Formats and Dewey

My recent stint in collection development has hit some snags.  The materials I was allowed to order have forced us to reexamine some of our collection practices, and the whole thing has spiraled into far more work than anyone thought it would be.

The problems revolve around our dvd and graphic novel collections.  In the case of DVD’s (which all fit on a single shelf previously) we had them separated into features (placed with our a/v materials) and non-fiction (shelved with the books).  Our graphic novels on the other hand were shelved as a special collection within our YA department.  Neither of these collection policies scaled well.  With the videos we’re running up against non-fiction features (the John Adams miniseries) and Shakespeare adaptations that could go either way, and thus the system breaks.

With the graphic novels the issues are a combination of age appropriateness concerns, what to do with non-fiction books, and what to do with all the art collections of comic artists I purchased (I’m actually regretting that a little now).  The art books are the real problem here, as we don’t have any other ones in YA, so there’s a debate raging now about whether or not they should go in the adult collection instead.

Now I know the easy solution to both of these issues is to stop taking the half measures with both collections and just have separate sections by material type alone.  I would love to be able to do that, but I don’t think it’s going to happen anytime soon.  So in the meantime we have to continue making things up everytime we find an exception to a rule, which is going to happen frequently the way things are.

I’m done venting for now.

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