Unshelved Clearance Sale
Unshelved strip for 3/29/2010

Don't Ban Our Books

I have this conversation several times at every library conference, and PLA last week was no exception

Librarian: "We love your comic strip!"

Me: "Thank you. Would you like to buy one of our books?"

Librarian: "Our library already has them all!"

Me: "That's great, thank you for the support. It really makes a difference"

Librarian: "Yeah, we keep them in the staff room."

Me: "What about your general collection?"

Librarian: "Oh no. No, we'd never put them there."

I can never get a straight answer about why this is. My best guess: Unshelved often presents the public as dumb, rude, and/or unreasonable. Well, they are. And I should know because no one is dumber, ruder, and/or more unreasonable than I. But that's not the point.

The point is that librarians, intellectual freedom fighters extraordinaire, aren't supposed to be hiding disreputable books in the back where only they can see them. They're supposed to be shelving disreputable books right up front with all the rest.

So please, don't ban our books. Some of our most loyal readers first discovered Unshelved in the library, on the same shelf as Doonesbury, Dilbert, and Pearls Before Swine, three personal favorites that also aren't afraid to call people stupid.

Update: I've already gotten a ton of emails from folks letting me know that all seven Unshelved collections circulate freely in their libraries, so clearly the above-mentioned phenomenon is an aberration. I also heard from several libraries that shelve our books under "library science", which is both awesome and frightening.

One Book A Day

This week is sponsored by four different authors of four different books, one each day. Please reward their support of Unshelved by clicking on their banners and investigating their books. There might just be something for you (or your library, or your bookstore). I'll post a summary at the end of the week.

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Our next appearances

Apr 26 Seattle, WA
Cartoonists Northwest Toonie Awards Dinner
Hall of Fame Award & Talk (Gene & Bill)

May 7 Chicago, IL
Chicago Public Library staff
STP (Gene & Bill)

May 9 Darien, IL
Indian Prairie Public Library District staff
Funny Thing (Bill)

May 16 Campbell, CA
Santa Clara County Library District staff
Funny Thing (Gene & Bill)

May 30 New York, NY
Book Expo America
11am 1E02 Worst Social Media Advice Ever (Bill)
1pm 1E02 Too Much Information (Gene & Bill)

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Drop-In Titles

A paid service from Unshelved letting you know about titles so hot off the press you won't find them in any catalog! How to list titles

Landmark: The Inside Story of America's New Health Care Law and What It Means for Us All The Staff of the Washington Post / PublicAffairs / $12.95 / 9781586489342 / 1586489348 / Politics/ Health / Trade Paper / On Sale: Apr 30, 2010 / The Washington Post?s must-read guide to health care reform traces how Obama and the Democrats achieved this historic overhaul, explains the legislation itself, and shows how it will impact individual Americans.