In this captivating episode of Beyond the Pen, we sit down with Joseph Wooley, Acquisitions Director, and Danielle Acton, Adult Engagement Coordinator, at the Hamilton East Public Library in Indianapolis, Indiana. Join us as we uncover the ins and outs of getting your book on library shelves, the significance of adult engagement programs, and the evolving landscape of book fairs and genre diversity. Discover the importance of professional reviewers, the role of Amazon reviews, and successful strategies authors can use to make their mark in the world of libraries.
Key discussion points:
1. Demystifying Acquisitions: Tips and tricks for authors to get their books in libraries.
2. Adult Engagement Programs: Why they matter and how to get involved.
3. The Value of Library Presence: The impact of having your book in libraries.
4. Expert Strategies: How to successfully pitch your book to library professionals.
5. The Reviewer's Dilemma: Professional reviewers vs. Amazon reviews.
6. Book Fair Evolution: Exploring genre diversity at this year's events.
Don't miss this informative and engaging conversation with two key figures from the Hamilton East Public Library as they share their insights and expertise to help authors flourish in the literary world!
- "Beyond the Pen" podcast episode
- Features interview with Danielle Acton and Joseph Wooley
- Hamilton East Public Library in Indianapolis
- Process of submitting a book for consideration in the library's collection
- Importance of local authors being involved in the library's programming
- Upcoming local author fair
- Value of professional reviews
- Inclusivity and accessibility in library programming
- Trends in the industry
- Guests encourage listeners to visit their local library and attend the local author fair
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**Speaker 1** (00:00:08) - Welcome to Beyond the Pin, the podcast that delves into the untold stories of emerging authors and the literary world. I'm your host, Maccabee Griffin, and each week I'll be shining a spotlight on talented, yet undiscovered authors, giving them a platform to share their incredible stories and unique journeys that brought them to the world of writing. In each episode, we'll deep dive into the story behind the story, exploring the inspirations, challenges, and triumphs that have shaped our guests literary careers, and have some fun along the way. From the initial spark of an idea to the journey of crafting and publishing their books, we'll uncover the secrets that make their stories truly special. But that's not all. Once a month, we'll be joined by an expert from the publishing world who will share invaluable insights and advice for aspiring writers, answering your burning questions and demystifying the path to success in the literary industry. At Beyond The Pen, my mission is simple to entertain, educate, and encourage the next generation of great storytellers. So, whether you're a writer and avid reader, or simply someone with a passion for storytelling, join us as we venture beyond the pen and celebrate the power of the written word.
**Speaker 1** (00:01:42) - Hello, all you happy people? It is McAbee again, and I am at my local library with two wonderful people, two people that you need to know if you are wanting to get your book into your library. I am talking to Mr. Joseph Wooley, who is the acquisitions librarian, and Ms. Daniel Acton, who is the Adult Engagement Coordinator. And these two are your greatest resources for at least here at the Hamilton East Public Library in Indianapolis area. But for anybody else that's not in the Indianapolis area, go to your library, find out who your acquisitions librarian is, and your adult acquisition, or excuse me, adult engagement coordinator is, and they're gonna be able to give you all those in all that information on how to get your book into the library. So without further ado, I am going to bring Mr. Joseph Willie and Ms. Daniel Acton on here. Thank you for coming on the show. I appreciate it. So, for everybody who doesn't know anything about either one of you, uh, we'll start with you, Danielle. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, can you please introduce yourself to our beautiful bookworms and literary liaisons, and tell us a little bit about yourself, but also most importantly, something you're willing to give up to us that we can't find out about you on the internet or anywhere else?
**Speaker 2** (00:03:13) - Uh, so, uh, as you mentioned, I am the adult engagement coordinator here at the library. So that's just the fancy way of saying I'm the adult program coordinator. I lead our public services librarians in some of our assistance in providing planning and providing, um, events and classes that are geared towards the adult audiences here. Something about me that nobody could dig up on the internet, that's a, I don't know, that's a tough one, um, that you're willing to give up, that I'm willing to give up. Um, well, I didn't really understand a lot of the, what you were doing with the mics here. Um, I have, I have, um, broadcast on Twitch before <laugh>, like, what's a nerd in a nerdy, in a nerdy way? I'm very much into board games. Okay.
**Speaker 1** (00:03:57) - What's your Twitch thing? We can talk about that later.
**Speaker 2** (00:04:00) - We can talk about that later. Like, we're not, we've fallen off the wagon lately, uhoh. So, but, um, it grew outta covid on pandemic quarantine times, um, as a way to still connect with our gaming friends and find new gaming friends. Actually, we made some cool, cool friends and connections, uh, over Twitch.
**Speaker 1** (00:04:21) - That's awesome. Yeah. All right. What about you, Joseph?
**Speaker 3** (00:04:24) - Yeah, thank you. Um, yeah, as you mentioned, um, I am the adult material selector here at the library, which means that, uh, all of the adult materials, meaning books, uh, movies, CDs, audio books, everything of that nature, both physical and, and on our digital catalog as well. Uh, anything that comes into the library kind of goes through me first. So I, I do the, um, the kind of the approval and, and, um, and maybe unfortunately passing on some, some of our materials and a way to, um, get our, our patrons the best, uh, uh, best information and the things that they want, want the most. And I guess a, a thing about me that my coworkers probably know, but the world at large doesn't, is that while I live in Indianapolis, I'm a diehard Detroit sports fan. So if you want a shortcut to getting your book into the library, maybe set it around the America Park, where the Tigers play and, and, and that, that might, that might help you out a little
**Speaker 1** (00:05:22) - Bit. Wow. Okay. So we got a little bit of dirt on you then, <laugh>. So, okay. So as the acquisitions librarian, uh, can you walk us through the step-by-step process of submitting a book for consideration in the library collection, uh, whether it's an ebook, a physical book, or even an audiobook?
**Speaker 3** (00:05:45) - Sure. Absolutely. So, uh, submitting a a physical book is the, the easiest way to do this, uh, digitally on any of our ebook content is kind of run through our overdrive or, uh, hoop flow platforms, which are less accessible for, for, um, somebody who's not behind a, a major publisher. Uh, but for physical books, we, we happily take, um, any kind of donations that a local author is, is willing to, willing to part with and how that process works. The donations come to me and, and, uh, uh, some of my colleagues and our, our selections team, we evaluate the book against our, uh, established collection development policy and, and criteria. And when it, uh, inevitably when it passes our, our tests, then we add it into the collection and, and decide where it best fits the, the needs of the patrons.
**Speaker 1** (00:06:39) - Nice. And Danielle, um, how do you envision the future of the adult engagement at the library and the era of digitalization? And why is it important for authors to be a part of it?
**Speaker 2** (00:06:53) - Well, especially, um, when you're working with your local library, I mean, I think local authors, especially if they are self-publishing or just starting out, they want to connect with those around them first, like in the community where they live. So we, as the programming coordinator, we get a lot of requests, um, from authors saying, Hey, I have a new book coming out. Um, I would love to have a talk at the library or assigning. And, um, I feel for those authors, however, <laugh>, we get so many of those requests, we have a really prolific community around us. So unfortunately we can't, we can't honor all of those requests. So that's why we do this annual local author fair every year so that we can, um, accommodate as many of those local authors as possible. Um, cuz there's just no way we can, we can do every single, every single one as a one-off, unfortunately.
**Speaker 1** (00:07:53) - So what goes into this book fair? What, what are some of the things that people need to know about it?
**Speaker 2** (00:08:00) - Um, it's growing year after year. Um, this is the third one that since I've been here, uh, at Hamilton East Public Library that I've been involved in coordinating and planning, it's, it's the biggest ever this year <laugh>, we had over a hundred applications from local authors, which is amazing. However, we only have about 60 booth spaces. So, um, it's, it's becoming, um, a task like, it's, it's heartbreaking to have to say no to, you know, 40 some authors that applied. Um, but that's, that's just where we are now. It's, it, the words out the, the events getting bigger and more popular. So
**Speaker 1** (00:08:39) - Yeah, for someone who was there last year mm-hmm. <affirmative> and talking to a lot of the authors, this is huge. Cuz we had how many last year? We had like 20,
**Speaker 2** (00:08:47) - It was, it was about 43, including the, or the few organizations that were there too. Right. Um, and that was, we were being, being still a little cautious around covid, you know, concerns and in the spacing of the table. So that's why we're up to about 60 some this year. We can pack people in there <laugh> a little more closely. Um, but that's really like the capacity of, of the, uh, the venue. So yeah.
**Speaker 1** (00:09:15) - But even still, that's a lot mm-hmm. <affirmative> and, and, you know, last year was really successful with that and I'm, I'm pretty sure Joseph, that some of these authors have actually been brought into the library after this, uh, book fair actually happened or even prior to that. I'm, I'm
**Speaker 3** (00:09:35) - You mean on, uh, as there, there are books on the shelf? Yes, yes. Yeah, absolutely. In fact, yeah, that's one of the things that I, I work with Danielle here on is, uh, getting those titles into our, into our catalog as soon as possible. So, uh, in fact, I'm in the process of, of doing that right now is, and that's, uh, going through the list, uh, of, of authors who have already been vetted by the, the local author fair committee and, and, uh, adding their, their books to our, to our shelves so that, um, the local, local readers can, can read what their neighbors are writing. That's, that's kind of a fun way to think about it.
**Speaker 1** (00:10:09) - Yeah, that is because I, I think it's funny as that when people really look at these book fairs, they don't really look at how much of a community process this is and how much the community's involved in it. So what are some of the key benefits an author can expect from having their books included in the library's collection?
**Speaker 3** (00:10:31) - Uh, absolutely. Uh, well, the, but just by having books on the shelf gives, uh, well, with, as with any book gives free access to that, that title. And I've had numerous authors who, uh, reached out to me and asked maybe after the fact, how, how is my book doing? And I'm able to, you know, do some searching and see, be happy to tell 'em, oh, your book's gone out a dozen times in the last, in the last year or so. And that's, uh, that's, I think that's really enlightening for, for a lot of, a lot of new and, and up and coming authors to know that, well that's, that might be 10 people who read my book last year that that wouldn't have otherwise just because it was on the shelf and the cover caught their eye and, and the, the description sounded good and they, a person walked home with it. So, uh, that's, that's been, uh, really fun to, really fun to connect the authors with the an audience.
**Speaker 1** (00:11:23) - Yeah, because I, when I was coming up with these questions and doing research on what you do and Danielle, what you do, I noticed that a lot of different articles were saying the exact same thing, is that majority of the time, especially with self, uh, self-published authors, that there is a sense that when it's at the library, there's a lot more people that see it comparative to going on Amazon and Barnes and Noble and all these other places because they don't have that reach and it's a lot more fun and more fulfilling to them when it's within their own community. So, have you ever observed any successful strategies authors has used to secure spots for their book in the library's collection?
**Speaker 3** (00:12:14) - The, the most successful books that are, are submitted into our collection are, are those with the, the kind of the widest reach and, and the most, um, the most interest level for, for, for all patrons. So that could be, it could be, um, sticking with certain genres. Uh, like I know I've, I've wit witnessed success with people writing like science fiction books and, and having those, those, uh, do well in our, in our circulation numbers. Um, but having the, the wider reach and kind of, uh, meeting a lot of the, the popular demand is, is what, um, what drives circulation.
**Speaker 1** (00:12:47) - What about you, Danielle? Can you share any, uh, share a story of a memorable or transformative experience, an adult pat, uh, Patreon hat Patron, can't speak, had at one of your library events because of this?
**Speaker 2** (00:13:02) - Any library event or specifically the author Fair?
**Speaker 1** (00:13:06) - Either one. Either one.
**Speaker 2** (00:13:07) - Um, well, um, I hope I don't get emotional, but after last year's fair, actually it was several months after last year's author fair. Um, there was one of the authors that was invited to last year's fair. She and a friend of hers were all also, they were both, um, at the fair, both had a booth, um, and, um, I apologized that, I don't remember their names right now, but she said, I wanted to let you know that my friend, this was, that was her first book. She was so excited about getting accepted to the author Fair. And she, you know, had a blast talking to the people that came to the fair and she sold books and it was like a dream come true for her. And the reasons that she was telling me this is that her friend had cancer Oh, wow. And then had passed, oh, like a month or so before, she sent me that message via email, and she just wanted to let us know that like, we made such a difference in her friend's life, like before, before the end. And she was so happy to have had that experience at our author Fair.
**Speaker 1** (00:14:15) - Wow. That is
**Speaker 2** (00:14:16) - Amazing. I had to take a few moments that day at my desk, <laugh>,
**Speaker 1** (00:14:21) - I bet I, I would've been, I I would've been shot for the rest of the day, but like, I'm going home. Yeah, I'm done. I
**Speaker 2** (00:14:27) - Can't do this anymore. Things like that make, you know, all of the day-to-day stresses at work worth it. So,
**Speaker 1** (00:14:33) - You know, that's, I think that's something that people need to be realized when they're doing this. How grateful, you know, people can be with the, just having the opportunity and utilizing that opportunity. And it, it doesn't matter, like you said, it, it doesn't matter if it's one book, if it's 10 books, if it's 35 books. Just having the opportunity to have your story picked up by somebody and having the opportunity to come and talk to them and all this stuff. I mean, even as a story writer myself, that's, that's great. I love when people can say, I love that story. It impacted me in some way, shape, or form. And it's fun. Cuz that's what we do as storytellers. That's why we have great librarians like yourselves here, because that's what you, I just love to do, is just to keep that art of storytelling alive.
**Speaker 1** (00:15:26) - Joseph, we're gonna get into some of the nitty gritty of, you know, some of the things that people really have been looking for when it comes to, you know, writing their books and everything. And I remember at one point, again, when I was doing the research, that it is said that it's more valuable to have a author invest in paid reviews for, you know, anything from, uh, I think it was the publishers journal or something to that effect. Um, but these reputable journals and articles that focus on getting these reviews out there for people. Do you think that most people should either work on rep these epidural journals or focus on online reviews from platforms like Amazon and Good Reads to get your people that are in your positions? Uh, attention?
**Speaker 3** (00:16:34) - Yes. Uh, professional reviews are, are hugely important in our industry. I spend a, a large portions of my day reading those professional reviews. Uh, I I think you, you were getting at Publishers Weekly, maybe as, as one of the options. Yeah, yeah. Library Journal, um, Kirks reviews, those are all, uh, professional reviews sources that, that we use to, um, they they advocate for, for books and, and, uh, especially stress. Uh, what kind of books are important to, to which size collections and, and what types of collections. So, um, so yes, I I I can't pretend that the, the professional reviews, uh, uh, uh, don't, don't help the, the situation, but they, they certainly do. Now that's not possible for, for everyone. However, as you mentioned, those are, are paid reviews. So, uh, they, they tend to exclude people who don't, uh, take that additional step or, or have the, the means to, to take that step.
**Speaker 3** (00:17:30) - So, uh, getting, uh, getting reviews of independent books are, are, are just as, just as important. Uh, there are are certain review sources. There's a, a forward magazine, uh, uh, they, they, um, compile independent reviews of, or, or I should say, reviews of independent books that, that we use that to kind of drive our, uh, some of our purchasing decisions. Um, but, but yes, those, those kind of, um, industry trade reviews are, are, are certainly very valuable. Now you mentioned like, uh, an Amazon review or, or, so those, um, not to say they're not useful to us, but, uh, we understand that those are written by, by individuals and, and those aren't, uh, we wouldn't treat those with the same kind of, uh, understanding as we would a, a professional review.
**Speaker 1** (00:18:19) - Right? No, the, because it's almost like looking at when co when you look at journalism, you know, journalists, their biggest favor or their favorite places to, that they always want to go to is, you know, the New York Times or Washington Post. Those are like the places that people wanna go because that's where people see their articles the most. And they have been around for so long that people see that as this is the articles that you want to go to look. Same thing with medical journals or engineering journals or whatever the case may be. There's always those prolific ones that people want and need to go to because they're the most seen. So I can definitely understand that. So, Danielle, let me ask you this real quick. Um, knowing that these reviews and everything are something that people need to look into more and think about investing for themselves, how do you ensure the accessibility and the inclusivity in your adult programming, uh, for your patons, when it, when it varies to abilities, backgrounds, and needs and having these presented to them in a way that's going to allow them to be seen by the public?
**Speaker 2** (00:19:40) - Well, I mean in, in regards to our local author fair, um, we of course evaluate, you know, after the applications come in, we use a number of criteria to determine whether or not we will invite the author for the fair. Um, however, a lot of the authors that are local, like we mentioned, we we're, we're not gonna find their, their works, um, reviewed by those sources, the professional reviews. Um, so we, we do look at Amazon, um, to a certain extent, um, or Good Reads because a lot of them do have, you know, a, a good number of reviews on there already. We're not talking thousands mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, but, you know, dozens, hundreds. Um, so that certainly helps. Um, but for the, for the fair, it's really like local is is paramount. So we, we look at the distance from our service area, cuz we did get some far flung applications from like Ohio and I'm like, you're not really local. I mean, thank you for taking the time and I'm like wildly curious as to how you found out about our Fair, fair <laugh>. But it could've been anything
**Speaker 1** (00:20:48) - To do with the podcast
**Speaker 2** (00:20:50) - At all or anything like it could've been that. Um, and like local significance. Um, we have several that are, you know, about Noblesville history or Fisher's history specifically, so that's almost a shoe-in. Um, yeah, yeah, I still have
**Speaker 1** (00:21:06) - Both of those books at home right now and I need to bring those in cuz they're really good books.
**Speaker 2** (00:21:10) - I just, yeah, yeah. Keep forgetting. And of course we, we invite some, um, organizations, um, to come to the Author Fair, um, as well, um, one this year being the Hamilton County Bicentennial Commission because they published a book that was, you know, about the, the county's history. Um, yeah. So it's, it's definitely, um, a number of criteria that we, we use when, when judging who we can invite to the fair. But, um, it, it is definitely different than what Joseph is looking at when he's making purchasing decisions. Yeah,
**Speaker 1** (00:21:45) - Absolutely. Um, so let me ask you just Joseph, because everybody knows that, well, at least most people should know this, that when it comes to getting these books, getting these programs out there, there's a budget and you guys have to share that budget because it's, this is nonprofit, uh, more or less, more or less, more or less. Um, but is state funded? Am I correct on that? Yes. Okay. So what are some of the current trends in the library? How can authors leverage these trends to increase their chances of being included in your collection?
**Speaker 3** (00:22:26) - Well, I think I would say pay attention to the other books that are on the, uh, not the New York Times bestseller list, for example. That's, there's a reason why authors tout that as the, as the, the gold standard for, for best selling. When you see that you'll, you'll, you'll see the trends that are, are evident. I think also paying attention to what gets turned into movies and TV series. Uh, anything that is, is big enough to turn into a filmed production within, within a year or so, uh, just watch that will spawn some, some lookalikes down the road. So, uh, I think that following in those, in the trends that, that are, um, that are turned into, you know, other mediums is, is definitely a, a, a popular, popular avenue to, to get more, more eyes on a, a book.
**Speaker 1** (00:23:16) - So let me ask you this then. As of this month, what are some of the most checked out genres of the library that you know of? And the same thing with you, Danielle, with people coming to, uh, the book Fair and stuff like what are the top three?
**Speaker 3** (00:23:34) - Sure. The, um, thrillers are, are always, always a big deal at our, our library. If you, if you write a, a captivating mystery with a, with a twist ending, uh, those are, those are gonna be, um, going to be, be popular, i, I who done it mm-hmm. <affirmative> kind of mysteries. Those, those are always gonna be in the most popular. Um, romance stories, obviously. Also, if you write a captivating romance, like, uh, Colleen Hoover jumps to mind right away. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, uh, I, I I think last I checked six of her books were in our top 10 most circulated in the last, last really month. So, so she has particularly caught storm. So, um, and, and she writes in that, that, um, romance that's, that's popular amongst, uh, many readers, so mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, you'll, you'll notice that as a, a popular, popular trend.
**Speaker 1** (00:24:22) - That's awesome. What about you, Danielle? What, what are some of the more popular genres that are at gonna be like at the book fair this year?
**Speaker 2** (00:24:31) - We, we try to invite a variety so that we have a good representation. Um, but it, if it can be difficult if we don't get authors applying Yeah. Um, that write in those genres. But we definitely have several romance, um, writers for the adult audiences. Um, but we, we have a good subsection though too of, um, children's authors that will be at the fair. Um, a little more than a dozen of those. About a dozen young adult authors. Teen authors as well. Um, and of course the teen authors, they tend to, um, favor like fantasy, um, you know, fantastical realms. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, your high fantasy. Yeah. High fantasy, um, is very popular. But also there's, we have poets, uh, collections of poetry. Um, the Indiana Poet, uh, poetry Society will be there. Let's see, we have a lot of memoirs too. A lot of people locally, um, have written memoirs, um, telling their life stories. So mysteries, thrillers, a couple of westerns.
**Speaker 1** (00:25:38) - So there's definitely a diverse,
**Speaker 2** (00:25:39) - Definitely diverse. And we, we tried to get a good mix of genre representation at the Okay. At the fair.
**Speaker 1** (00:25:47) - So let me ask you both this, cuz there's always a right way to do it and there's always a wrong way to do it. What are, what are the, your, your top three dos and don'ts of, you know, getting a book even looked at for not only, you know, the book fairs or any of these adulting, uh, events, but also to get their books into the libraries?
**Speaker 2** (00:26:13) - I'll start for the author fair, the only do is have a published book and then submit your application for the fair. That's all. That's the baseline. Wow. That's, yeah, that's <laugh> If
**Speaker 1** (00:26:24) - You can't do that, come on now, folks.
**Speaker 2** (00:26:26) - Seriously.
**Speaker 1** (00:26:26) - Yeah.
**Speaker 3** (00:26:27) - Uh, I will echo that. Yeah. Having a, a published work in hand and, and something that, that we can, we can look through and, and browse, uh, that, that is definitely the, the place to start, at least if you're starting from a, a theoretical, well, I wanna write a book about this. I I would say fantastic. I can't wait to look through it. And then, then, but then we would go from go from there. As for, um, as for a, a don't, I'll, I'll, I'll take that. Um, I would, part of our, our policy is that when we accept a book into our, our collection, whether it's by donation or by something we have, have elected to purchase, that we kind of decide where that book lives and, and what we do with it from, from that, from that point on. So, uh, a don't would be, uh, going into your library and, uh, well, first demanding that they add it to the collection, which is, is not going to be a, a, a fun conversation for either either side of the of things.
**Speaker 1** (00:27:26) - Yeah, yeah. No, that's, that's not, no, let's not do that.
**Speaker 3** (00:27:29) - Yeah. <laugh>. But, but then, uh, but then deciding or, or, or trying to instruct the library where you think that that book should, should live and, and the best ways for us to use that. Uh, we, we just ask that, that you trust librarians to, to do with your book what, what, um, what is best for the patrons and best for you and best for the library itself. And, uh, and that, that would be, uh, I, I'll turn that into a do. How about, how about that? There you go. Say you go trust, trust your librarians.
**Speaker 1** (00:27:57) - Well, you know, the people that actually do this every single day, the, you know, the, the experts per se. Um, speaking of policies, you know, there was something that I, I also noticed when, again, doing my research, because I never want to come into these interviews, you know, have cocked or anything of that nature. Is there a way that authors can actually come to you and say, Hey, can I have a, a a look at what your policy is, um, some of the resources that, of places like where you, you I need to put this stuff up and where you look and stuff of that nature?
**Speaker 3** (00:28:36) - Yes. Our policy, well, for collection development as well as any of our, our policies are all public facing, and you can find them, uh, on our website. In fact, there's a, a policies banner that lists all of these. And, and collection development is one of those, uh, particularly we have selection criteria that, um, a book doesn't need to meet all of those, uh, those criteria. But, uh, there, that, there's a clearly laid out list of, of things that, that kind of, uh, decide how we select books for, for the collection. And, and I would, I would urge anybody to, to check that out. Um, and that, that is true for, I won't say every library, of course, but for, for most libraries, the, their policy is, is public for a reason. So, uh, the, those are most often available on, on websites including collection development.
**Speaker 1** (00:29:27) - So beyond the basic information, um, what additional details should author include on their sales sheet to make it more compelling for the library to, you know, pick up?
**Speaker 3** (00:29:40) - Well, as, as Danielle mentioned earlier, having a local connection is, is always, um, is always preferred. I would say, uh, not to say that we won't accept donations from, from anywhere, but if you are, if you are an, an author trying to get your book in, in a swath of libraries, uh, maybe sending more personalized messages in including those with your books as opposed to just a, a blanket, uh, email to libraries across the state about, about adding your book. And those are, are less likely to get noticed by, by someone like, like me.
**Speaker 1** (00:30:17) - So here's the fun thing that I, I love about this is that you guys have been able to really bring out the resources for people. And obviously Danielle, you know, people can come, I'm presuming people can come to you at the book fair and talk to you about this and, you know, even be able to say, yes, I can be a resource for you kind of thing.
**Speaker 2** (00:30:43) - Yeah, yeah. Um, librarians in general, we are here to help, you know, whether it is the event coordinator type like myself or the collection development type like Joseph or just our, our public services, um, or children's librarians or teen librarians, we are here to help. Um, we are here to ask questions and help connect you to the information and resources that you need, whether that is related to writing a book and getting it published or anything else, you know, you need to research stocks or, you know, I don't know. We get all sorts of questions and that's what we are here for. Um, we, we can, and if we can't answer the question for you or help you with your particular concern, we, um, will try our best to connect you to another resource or organization that we'll be able to.
**Speaker 1** (00:31:34) - So I, because I've heard this, and it's been a long time ago, but I've never been able to confirm it, when adding a book to the, the library, either physical audiobook or ebook, every book is, or every library is attached to the same specific system. Is that correct?
**Speaker 3** (00:31:57) - Do you mean like inter-library loan, is that what you're referring? Inter library loans? Yes. Yeah. Um, I, I'll speaking broadly, not every library is connected. It's, it's not one network Okay. That, that all libraries are connected with. Uh, but there are certain networks which libraries can, can share materials around. So, um, that's, that's one of the things that, that we do very, uh, very frequently is, is, uh, take requests and, uh, see the best ways to, to, to get them either by purchasing them, purchasing them, or by sending them to, uh, another library and, and getting those materials brought in so that we can assist our patrons using the resources of, of another library.
**Speaker 1** (00:32:40) - So if, you know, we we're, we're gonna go into the, the creative, uh, part of a part of this, uh, episode. Uh, obviously you both are not authors yourselves, uh, but you guys know enough about books that this is gonna be fun anyways, <laugh>, um, say that I am, you know, a, a new author and I have come to you guys, you've already approved of just having a conversation, at least. What are some of the things that I need to really re uh, to research before I even come into you guys to say, here's my book. I know you guys have seen the reviews and everything, but it, how is it that I can secure it being here at least one copy?
**Speaker 3** (00:33:27) - Uh, well, fortunately that there's not a lot of research that, that you need to do on the author end, the, the, uh, we kind of, we do a lot of the research our ourselves in, in a way that we wanna make sure that it, our book meets our, our selection criteria. So, uh, I would say, uh, just have a have an open and personal conversation with one of us if that, whether that comes from a, a letter that, that you're including or, or just a conversation that that happens over the phone or, or even dropping by the library. Uh, and just, just talking to us about your book, showing that passion, that that goes a long way in, in, in selling a, selling a, a librarian on, on adding that book to the, the collection.
**Speaker 1** (00:34:07) - And, and don't tell us exactly where you need to put it. And
**Speaker 3** (00:34:10) - <laugh>. Correct. Yes. So those are things
**Speaker 1** (00:34:12) - <laugh>. So I want to thank you both for being on here. I really do, because this is something that I've been waiting to do for a while. I just haven't had the chance <laugh>, and now I do, and it's great. But now we wanna learn a little bit more about you two, and we're gonna start with Danielle on this. Um, Danielle, what inspired you to actually be a librarian?
**Speaker 2** (00:34:35) - Um, I'm in a very different role now than when I first, you know, came a, an official librarian out of grad school. Um, I didn't have this programming focus before, um, I was just sort of a general reference librarian, but back when I came outta library school and was a brand new shiny librarian, there's a library school. Yes. Wow. Yes.
**Speaker 1** (00:34:55) - You learn something new every day.
**Speaker 2** (00:34:57) - Yes. I, I have a master of library science. So <laugh>
**Speaker 1** (00:35:03) - Master.
**Speaker 2** (00:35:03) - Yes.
**Speaker 1** (00:35:04) - Okay. Master. Um, tell me everything.
**Speaker 2** (00:35:07) - <laugh>. Hey, when I, when I was fresh out of grad school, um, I just, I, I gravitated towards public libraries as opposed to academic or school libraries or special libraries like law libraries. Mm. No, thanks. I admire the people that can do that, but that is not for me anyway. Um, I, I love, no two days are the same. You're always going to have conversations with patrons, um, that are different and amazing and interesting, and, but they, they need help, you know, in one way or another. Whether it's just, Hey, I want this specific title, can you help me find it in the library? Or I need to do this research for this paper, or I need to learn how to use Microsoft Word for work. Can you help me? Um, that's what really inspired me and keeps me going, like helping people in our community, the people that are in our neighborhood, and you know, it, especially adults, you know, I, you know, I deal with adult audiences and, um, everybody I think might at first think of libraries, public libraries as story times for little kids. Um, and we love families and that is a big part of what we do as well. But, uh, we're here for the continuing ed education of adults from the time they're 18 until, you know, a hundred and beyond, hopefully <laugh>. There you go. There you go. So, um, it's challenging, but it is also very rewarding.
**Speaker 1** (00:36:39) - What about you, Joseph? What inspired you to become a librarian?
**Speaker 3** (00:36:43) - Well, I think Danielle took all the good answers, <laugh>, but I think that just, uh, that speaks to the fact that I, librarians, um, if I could speak broadly, get into this business because we want to help, help our patrons and help our community. And, uh, I, I think most, mostly we, we recognize that this is a, a place for everyone. And, and there's something very, very value valuable about being able to connect anyone, uh, with, with, with whatever they're looking for. Whether it's something for entertainment or something for education that we, we have, um, we, we try to have the resources, resources for everyone. I, I, I like to think of, of libraries and, and, um, this is answers your question in a roundabout way, but when you're, when you're in school, uh, people are, are learning, but they're almost learning because they're, they have to be, they're, they're in school.
**Speaker 3** (00:37:33) - Yeah. I think of libraries just a little differently, but people walk into a library, it's because they, they want to be here and they, they want to learn more or, or, or find some enjoyment or, or they're, they're here because they, they choose to be. And, and, and, um, it's our responsibility to, to get them, to get them what they need. There's, there's no expectation to, to pay a dime when you walk in the door. You just, um, we, we have stuff for everyone. And, and that's, uh, that's the, the most rewarding part of, of, of what we do.
**Speaker 1** (00:38:06) - And I think it's more la especially when you said about the, the money part. It's like, this is free. Everything here is free. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I don't think a lot of communities actually really take advantage of that. Or if they do have the capability of doing it, you know, some obviously don't have the ability to do it or go out and buy a new book every week. Um, like many of us bookworms actually would love to do. Uh, but the, the ability to come to a library and say, Hey, I just got done with this book, can you recommend me a new one? Um, or Do you have this next book because I can't find it anywhere else. Is there a quote that inspires you to continue to come in and just have that same mentality every day to just keep doing what you do? It doesn't matter if it's like a song that helps you to get, you know, have that thought process of, this is gonna be a great day, I want to come in today. Or if it's someone that's just continues to inspire you to come in each day as well. I like that cheesy one. Oh, we gotta do the cheesy
**Speaker 2** (00:39:13) - One. If you want a cheesy one. You mentioned song, so here you go. <laugh>. This was, um, um, actually about the time when I was interviewing for this position here, <laugh>, it was my motto, have you seen the Lego movie
**Speaker 1** (00:39:26) - Too? Oh my gosh,
**Speaker 2** (00:39:27) - Which one? Everything's not awesome, <laugh>. Everything's not awesome, but it's cool when you're part of a team or however the song goes, like, you know, everything's not awesome, but you, you know, if you've worked together as a team towards, you know, a greater purpose, then, you know, yes, it's not awesome all the time, but you can do great things still.
**Speaker 1** (00:39:48) - So it's the Lego movie that just got it for you. Yes. The Lego movie.
**Speaker 2** (00:39:51) - It, you know, it it, that is it. It has great messages. It
**Speaker 1** (00:39:55) - <laugh> It does. I will admit that. Yes. Yes. It is a good movie. What about you, Joseph?
**Speaker 3** (00:40:00) - Well, I, I think, uh, I, I'll, I will, I won't have anything quite as fun as that, as that to add, but I, Danielle hit the nail on the head, is working, working with a team that, that keeps me coming, coming to work. And, uh, just being, being a part of, of a great team here at the library and knowing that we all have the same goal, and that is to, to help patrons and, and, and to be here. That, that is, is absolutely what keeps me going.
**Speaker 1** (00:40:26) - All right. So I, I know, uh, we were joking about this earlier, about writing kryptonite and everything. It was like, I'm not a writer. I don't, I don't do this. So I wanna know, what is your librarian kryptonite?
**Speaker 3** (00:40:40) - Definitely time management for me. I, I have about, uh, eight hours of things worth doing and, and maybe two hours to actually do them. So trying to, trying to squeeze all that in, in on one day and, and, and still be open and available to, to questions. That's, that is definitely the, uh, uh, I, I just wish I had had more of those hours on the, on the clock.
**Speaker 1** (00:41:02) - You and me both brother. You and me both. What about you, Danielle?
**Speaker 2** (00:41:05) - Same. Um, but I will also say more recently, um, I'm very distracted by the construction that is happening. <laugh> at our buildings, renovations will be fantastic, but, um, it is very distracting for me. <laugh>, I wanna watch what's going on. That's the part of the problem. Not just like when it's a little noisier than normal, but I wanna watch and see what they're doing, <laugh> Okay. And how they're gonna, how it's gonna look more awesome at the end.
**Speaker 1** (00:41:32) - Everything's gonna be awesome. Yeah. All right. So final question. What is next for you, Danielle and you Joseph? Not only as librarians, but for the library itself.
**Speaker 2** (00:41:46) - For me, it's a never ending cycle of planning programs and events and then putting those programs in, you know, into, into action and, and presenting them or facilitating them or, um, yeah. And as far as the local author fair, I, we will have to have a hard look and see if, like, how, how can we grow this? Because in the current venue that we are using, and there's literally not much more we can do to fit in more authors or organizations. So, um, we'll have to evaluate there, what, what is gonna come for next year's 2024. Ooh. Local author. Fair.
**Speaker 1** (00:42:26) - Interesting. All right. Joseph, what about you?
**Speaker 3** (00:42:28) - Well, next for me and my department is April, and then May, and then we keep going. You the, yeah. Um, no, I be, I am being light. But, uh, it's, it's definitely about keeping the, the, uh, materials coming in and, and keeping our patrons happy. Uh, and, and also at, at always, always, always evaluating our, our space to see, uh, to make sure that people are, are finding what they need and, and that they're finding it where they expect to find it. And, and kind of keeping our, our spaces, uh, the, the most, most user friendly and logical and, and keeping people happy. That's, that's what we're, we're trying to do next,
**Speaker 1** (00:43:07) - Man. Joseph, Danielle, thank you for being on a show. Please tell everybody where they can find you. This is the shameless self-promotion point. <laugh> is there, what event? Obviously we know the book fair is gonna be the big event, so we definitely wouldn't tell people about that, but is there any place people can find you? Uh, anything big coming up for, for you, Joseph or the department or anything like that? The floor's, yours?
**Speaker 3** (00:43:32) - I would just encourage you to visit your library. We, we've got locations here at, here at Fishers and Noblesville and, uh, any, any librarian would be happy to, happy to talk to you and, and help you get, get whatever you need. So, um, I have, I have nothing to personally promote. You can ask for Joseph at either library and you'll probably get me somewhere, but I'm, I'm usually usually hanging out at one of those two buildings. So,
**Speaker 2** (00:43:56) - Uh, so yes, the Hamilton East Public Library 2023 local Author Fair is coming up on Saturday, April 15th from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM at the form Events center in Fishers. It's, uh, really close to Ikea. And, uh, so we will have just over 60 local authors and literary organizations that you, it's a free open house style event. All ages are welcome. It doesn't cost you a dime to walk in the door. Um, hopefully you will, um, talk to some of our local authors about their writing journeys and, and their inspiration for, um, why they wrote their book or books, and hopefully purchase some books while you're there. There will be chances to also win some fabulous store prizes, like some book bundles, um, of books that have been donated by some of the local authors that are participating. Um, you'll, you'll also find MacAfee there. I will probably talking to some of these authors as well, so,
**Speaker 1** (00:44:53) - Yeah, that's true. Yeah, I'll be there, <laugh>. I will be there now. Thank you again, both for being on there. And ladies and gentlemen, please, please, please, I cannot say it much. Please go to your local library, talk to your librarians, get educated, get inspired to just continue to write, to continue to, uh, express your life in words that you may never have the chance to do again. And create these memoirs, create these memories with your kids, families. Do everything to get better and be better. And of course, of course, come to the book fair here in the Fishers areas. Just as Danielle said, it is April 15th from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Hey, I gotta look Awesome. Yes, <laugh>, and of course, continue to come to Beyond the Pen and get all these great, uh, quotes, inspirations, and everything else about our authors. And just do, as I always say, keep writing, keep inspiring, and keep sharing as we all go beyond the pen.
**Speaker 1** (00:46:08) - Hey folks, that's a wrap for this episode of Beyond the Pen. We hope you enjoyed listening as much as we enjoyed creating it. If you'd like to stay connected and up to date with everything beyond the pen, follow us on Twitter at Beyond the Pen, pod and Instagram at Beyond the Pen podcast. For even more content and exclusive access to our guest profiles and more, make sure to visit our website at beyond the pen podcast.com. Don't forget to join our Facebook fan page to interact with our favorite authors and fellow fans of the show. And if you want to take your beyond the Pen experience to the next level, check out our selection of video interviews on Traverse, TVs, video on demand and livestream. You can access these interviews through your Roku, Amazon Fire, apple tv, Google Play, iTunes, or the Traverse TV app. So, until next time, thanks again for tuning in and remember to keep writing, inspiring and sharing as you go beyond the pen.
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