Why Librarians Don’t Want to Buy Your Self-Published Book

wrapped up in books

When a self-published author contacts someone in the collection development department at my library, we let out a collective groan. Inevitably, our answer to the request to add their book to our collection will feel personal, which is awkward. It will definitely mean more work for us no matter what, and for acquisitions and cataloging staff as well if we do accept the book as a donation or decide to purchase it.

Librarians don’t want to buy your self-published book, but not for the reasons you think. 

I’ve been thinking about self-published books and their place in libraries a lot recently, as my library has been updating our collection development policy and brainstorming ways to streamline how we deal with requests from authors to include their self-published materials in our collection and how our collection development work complements our strategic goal of supporting content creation in our community.

Then, this weekend…

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