Self-Publishing and the Local Library

Just when I think I’ve become familiar with all the resources at my local library, I’ll happen upon yet another free feature. Today it was the surprise of finding a self-publishing community!

Indie Author Project–bringing together public libraries, authors, curators, and readers–started out as a partnership with Library Journal, and turned into a publishing community.

In my library it appears on the Readers and Writers webpage, along with information about the library’s website for indie authors, AND an easy-to-use digital self-publishing tool.

Nothing short of brilliant!

Browsing the Indie Alberta Collections of Self-Published books via Calgary Public Library

I ran across more information at Jane Friedman’s blog, in the article “6 Steps to Get your Self-Published Book into Libraries“. Here children’s author Ilham Alam gives step-by-step instructions for other authors who are interested in getting their self-published book into libraries. She even includes a template to use for pitching your work to a librarian.

Even Library and Archives Canada is highlighting their services for self-publishers, here.

My book is not quite ready to be self-published, but it’s good to know that there are so many options available for sending it out into the world.

Here are some links for authors wanting to get involved in a local Indie Author Day:
https://indieauthorday.com/host-an-event/ and https://indieauthorday.com/authors/

And although it is closed for 2021, the Alberta Author Project holds a contest for Indie Authors, according to https://indieauthorproject.librariesshare.com/alberta/ .

Check out your library!

Granted, not all libraries are the same, so yours may have different offerings. But go check your library out, because it may have snuck in some new resources, too!

Here are some features more and more libraries offer:

  • Getting advice and having your manuscript reviewed by the Author in Residence
  • Accessing resources from a network of other library systems
  • Accessing free services like borrowing a laptop for up to 8 weeks, free printing, or even free library cards!
  • Indoor play areas
  • Meeting rooms for families or organizations
  • Borrowing a Musical Instrument
  • At-home online virtual services: story times, early literacy activities, study help for students, free online courses for adults, streaming your favourite music, flipping through a digital magazine, watching an award-winning film

A group I sometimes hike with even borrows hiking gear from their town’s local library!

Happy reading and writing and exploring!