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Chapter proposals for The Small Library Manager’s Handbook

Do you know how to manage a small public, special, or academic library well?  Would you be willing to share your expertise in one or more management areas with other librarians?

If so, you are invited to submit proposals for The Small Library Manager’s Handbook  to be co-published by the Medical Library Association and Rowman & Littlefield  in 2014.

I am editing this guide and am looking for concise, how-to chapters by practicing librarians in all types of libraries about your experiences managing a small library. This is a how-to book by librarians for librarians and LIS students.


In particular, we are looking for chapters that cover:


Administration (possible sub topics):

o   Managing time effectively

·         Generating realistic job descriptions

·         Developing effective staff

·         Creating annual reports

·         Determining strengths and weaknesses

·         Distinguishing library issues from institutional issues

·         Building partnerships and cooperative organizations


Marketing and Outreach (possible sub topics):

·         Building relationships with key members of the larger institution

·         Promoting the library within the organization and to the public

·         Programming

·         Creating community support

·         Recruiting and retaining volunteers

·         Creating a library website


 Finance and Fundraising (Possible topics are):

·         Establishing a budget

·         Locating funding sources for libraries

·         Writing successful grant proposals

·         Raising funds through events and Friends groups

·         Tracking purchases and expenditures


Collection Development, Management and Access (possible topics include):

·         Reconciling your library’s mission with the collection

·         Writing a collection development policy

·         Building a collection

·         Knowing when and what to weed

·         Cataloging tips for the non-cataloger

·         Accessing the collection

·         Building a collection of electronic resources

·         Choosing your ILS

·         Joining a library cooperative


Our target reader is the librarian in a small public, academic, or special library who either works by themselves or has a very small staff or volunteer group helping them.


Chapters should be self-contained, assume very little or no prior expertise in the area and make the reader’s work life easier.


Your chapter should:


(A) Begin by describing the nature of the function or task being covered, including its purpose and place in the day-to-day operation of the library;

(B)  Detail, in step-by-step fashion the best way(s) to go about the work, focusing on the time, staff, equipment, and financial resources (if any) involved or needed;

(C)  You may want to include a checklist or other handy tool to help readers visualize the work;

(D) Helpful tips, especially do’s and don’ts that will help readers avoid common problems or mistakes in the area; and

(E)  A very brief annotated list of recommended resources for further information, particularly those aimed at small libraries;

Contributions should be 3,000 to 4,000 words (about 10-15 pages, double-spaced, pages in New Times Roman 12 point type).  Chapters should be by a single author or at most two authors and should be original contributions.


Step One: Send a description of your topic in about 50 words, along with brief biographical information to by October 25, 2013. The Subject line should state the general topic/subtopic/your name, e.g. “Administration/Managing Time Effectively/Graves”


Step Two: When you are given the “go-ahead” you will have two months to submit your finished piece as a Word doc attached to an email. I will give you the format to use.


Payment will be one complimentary copy of the book for each author and a publication credit on your CV!

If you have any questions or need clarification, please email me at the address above.

Alice Graves, MLIS 

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