Cuyahoga County Public Library & SELF-e

Cuyahoga County Public Library's Indie Author Conference afternoon showcase. Image provided by Cuyahoga County Public Library
Cuyahoga County Public Library’s Indie Author Conference afternoon showcase. Image provided by Cuyahoga County Public Library

By Porter Anderson / @Porter_Anderson

Be sure to see our September Top 10 SELF-e Books

‘Standing Room Only’ Ahead of the new Skirball Writers’ Center

Cuyahoga logoIt’s hard to find a library program more focused on supporting its local authors than Cuyahoga (“Kye-ah-HOE-ga”) County Public Library in Parma, Ohio.

All you have to do is let Laurie Kincer, the incoming Coordinator of the new William N. Skirball Writers’ Center—opening October 18 at the South Euclid-Lyndhurst Branch—fill you in:

This year we created our first Indie Author Conference & Showcase, an all-day event that we plan to host annually for self-published writers.

At the morning conference, we had three speakers on self-publishing:

  • Jim Kukral on “The New Rules of Self-Publishing”;
  • J. Thorn on “How I Went From Selling 2 Books a Day to 200”; and
  • BiblioBoard’s Carolyn Morris on “SELF-e: Connecting Writers with Their Readers, at the Library.”

At the afternoon showcase, we hosted 45 local, predominantly self-published authors who each had a free table at which to meet their fans and sell and sign books. We also invited writing organizations to exhibit at the conference, including the local chapters of Sisters in Crime and Romance Writers of America, along with the Western Reserve Writers’ Conference and IngramSpark.

Everything was free and open to the public. We were overwhelmed with the response: a standing-room only crowd of 175 for the morning conference and 250 visitors to the afternoon showcase.

Laurie Kincer
Laurie Kincer

These activities, of course, are exactly the kind of thing that SELF-e is created to support, and Cuyahoga’s program offers a specific page on its site that can be used both to learn about uploading a book using SELF-e, and about seeing the SELF-e Indie Ohio Collection.

Sometimes, as we make conference presentations around the country (and overseas) about SELF-e, we encounter a little skepticism among authors that librarians are genuinely interested in the work of local and self-publishing authors. Kincer will make you think again fast with the Cuyahoga’s warm welcome:

We’re planning a promotion of SELF-e Select to congratulate local authors who were chosen for inclusion in the national module. We’ll launch the promotion after our brand new William N. Skirball Writers’ Center opens. It’s one of the very few dedicated, public library-based writers’ centers in the U.S. We’re timing our Select promotion with an invitation to visit the Writers’ Center for writing or author programs or just to write.

Hallie Rich
Hallie Rich

One of Kincer’s main focal points is effectively getting SELF-e Select titles from the Ohio Indie Anthology in front of patrons. “It’s hugely important, she tells me, to authors and readers that the SELF-e Select titles from the Ohio Indie Anthology are integrated into the library’s online catalog. SELF-e Select authors want to have their books search-able and find-able just like any other book in the library’s collection.”

On Vacation From Sanity by Elizabeth YurichThis involves a good, quick integration capability of MARC records (MARC stands for “machine readable record cataloging”) to be sure local authors’ work is as easily found and accessed as any other.

One of the titles that patrons will encounter in the Cuyahoga system is On Vacation From Sanity by Cleveland-based Elizabeth Ross Yurich, included in the Ohio Indie Anthology and SELF-e Select.

Guess how all this hard work by Kincer, Communications and External Relations and others on the team is being received?

There’s more to this story: Read the rest

By Porter Ander­son  

SELF-E Blog: Cuyahoga County Public Library & SELF-e: New Skirball Writers’ Center

Read the full post at: The Blog from SELF-e, Powered by Library Journal


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