Wednesday, January 4, 2012 Wednesday, November 23, 2011 Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The sad fact is that The Lost Country has become a pretty obscure work. shows only two used copies available for sale. In the Duke Libraries, the last transaction record we have for your novel is in 2004, when our copy was sent to high-density storage. It has not left the facility once since then, and our system shows no circulations in the prior decade, either. One of the famous “laws” of librarianship is that every book should have its readers, and the current system, I am afraid, is failing to connect your book to new readers.

It has to be said that the Authors Guild is not going to help you in this regard. They are not going to publish a new edition of The Lost Country for you, nor will they pay you any royalties on the out-of-print edition. The Authors Guild simply does not have the ability to create a new market for your book. Even if they were to succeed in a grand strategy to impose a licensing scheme for orphan works in general, there is no reason to believe that you would profit from it. With such an obscure work, potential users who had to pay a fee would probably just skip the planned use.

Kevin J. Smith, An Open Letter to J.R. Salamanca
Tuesday, September 27, 2011 Friday, September 23, 2011
Oh yeah, also tomorrow? Banned Books Week. 
Be ready for an onslaught. It’s going to be one crazy weekend.

Oh yeah, also tomorrow? Banned Books Week

Be ready for an onslaught. It’s going to be one crazy weekend.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011 Thursday, September 8, 2011


This year’s display! I’ve fallen in love with removable labels from DEMCO. The top is the adult display; each book has a label with a bright red slash/circle (what are those things called?) with some of the reasons the book was challenged or banned. This is the question we get asked the most—particularly when someone finds a classic or a beloved book. I got all of that information from the ALA website and the 2007 Banned Books Week Sourcebook. The close-up is LOTR which was burned with many other books for being “satanic”.

This year I kept the YA display separate, to encourage people to browse the books with the intent to check them out (which I think is easier when they’re browsing their reading level). For the teen books I went for a more provocative “Are you brave enough to read a banned book?” and a modification of the message from last year.

So, are you brave enough to read a banned book?