Getting Your Self-Published Book in a Library – A Guest Post From Eseme

This is a guest post from Eseme


Aldersprig has invited me to do a guest post on libraries, and how the acquire books, because this is something that some self-published indie authors don’t know much about. And they are curious. Great. Getting your book into a library is a super cool thing!

Why do I think this? I’m a librarian. I got my Library Science degree in May of 2007. I had worked in two libraries, one prior to starting the degree, and one while I was getting it (though that one was a university library which did not buy fiction). After getting the degree I job hunted for a while, the worked at a small rural public library (a town of 5,000) and I now work in what my state, Maine, would consider a medium-sized to large library (town of 20,000) but which most of the country considers a small library.

So I know a bit about how libraries buy books, how they add them to their collections (cataloging books and other items is among my job duties), author events at libraries (I have arranged more than one), and ebooks in libraries. I am also going to end with a few links I have found about bookstores and self-published books (I lurk on Publishers Weekly’s website, and read a blog written by bookstore owners).

Do I read indie books? Some. I read two web serials, and I have read MCA Hogarth’s self-published titles. But I haven’t read many. However, given that it is March and I have read a grand total of one novel in 2011, I don’t have much time to read anyone’s books, be they from Big Publishing or self-published. I do not hate self-published books (though I will admit that I have been handed some dubious ones in my work as a librarian). I think indie publishing lets people find the books they like, even if a Big Publisher won’t take a chance on that book.

I will warn you, this is not all rosy. Libraries, as they currently order books and add them to their collections, are not set up to easily find indie books, and it is more difficult to add them to collections. I’m going to explain why, and I hope this will give you ideas about how to reach out to your local library (and bookstores) effectively.

Also, I am a long winded individual. Particularly when talking, but I get wordy with my writing as well. I am going to do my best to keep this short, but there is a lot of info. So sorry, Aldersprig, but this is going to be about five posts, I think.

This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.

8 thoughts on “Getting Your Self-Published Book in a Library – A Guest Post From Eseme

    • You’re welcome! I hope you find it helpful. The articles are long. There is a lot of info on how libraries work.

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