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SUPPORTING TEEN STREET LIT READERS Megan Honig - LibraryLinkNJ - November 10, 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "SUPPORTING TEEN STREET LIT READERS Megan Honig - LibraryLinkNJ - November 10, 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 SUPPORTING TEEN STREET LIT READERS Megan Honig - LibraryLinkNJ - November 10, 2011

2 Megan Honig Member Editor, Young Adult Library Services Author, Urban Grit: A Guide to Street Lit Formerly at New York Public Library Blog: meganhonig.com/libraries Twitter: vonmeggz Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

3 Revok MSk"Agenda" LosAngeles Graffiti Art by flickr user anarchosyn  What is street lit?  Why do teens read street lit?  Books & reading suggestions  Advocating for teen street lit readers  Q&A Today's Agenda Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

4 Grounding Assumptions, Part 1 -- spring in philly -- by flickr user bancroft&ivy  As librarians, we serve all members of our communities.  Meaningful teen services are centered on the needs of teens.  The mission of a library is to connect library users with resources that have meaning for them.  Libraries can and must adapt to the changing needs of our communities. Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

5 Grounding Assumptions, Part 2 -- spring in philly -- by flickr user bancroft&ivy  Thinking through dynamics of race and class is key to understanding the needs of our communities.  Librarians don't have to like or agree with all of the materials we make available in libraries.  Members of the public don't have to like or agree with all of the materials we make available in libraries.  To provide effective library services, we must work from our mission, not our fears. Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

6 "Gritty stories about daily life, relationships, and survival in poor, urban neighborhoods." What Is Street Lit? Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

7  Literary context  A literature of class  Historical precursors  Rise of contemporary street lit  Street-themed novels sell big  Major publishers  Coldest Winter Ever  Flyy Girl  Independent authors  Teri Woods  Vickie Stringer  Zane Author Tracy Brown signs copies of Criminal Minded. From Contemporary Street Lit's Origins Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

8 Street Lit's Following Grows  Authors create publishing houses  Teri Woods Publishing  Triple Crown Publications  Urban Books  Mainstream publishers embrace street lit  Random House  St. Martin's  Simon & Schuster  The landscape today  Street lit = big business  Proliferation of authors and publishers Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig READ! by flickr user Barry Yanowitz

9 Defining Street Lit's Appeal VP and Cartel Cafe & Books  Street setting  External action  Fast pace  Conversational language  Authenticity  Pragmatism  Matter-of-fact treatment of sex, drugs, and violence Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers

10 And TEENS Are Reading This!!?? Shock-ed by flickr user CarbonNYC

11 "When some cultural critics fret about the 'ever-more-appalling' YA books, they aren’t trying to protect African-American teens forced to walk through metal detectors on their way into school. Or Mexican-American teens enduring the culturally schizophrenic life of being American citizens and the children of illegal immigrants. Or Native American teens growing up on Third World reservations. Or poor white kids trying to survive the meth-hazed trailer parks. They aren’t trying to protect the poor from poverty. Or victims from rapists. No, they are simply trying to protect their privileged notions of what literature is and should be. They are trying to protect privileged children. Or the seemingly privileged." --Sherman Alexie, YA and adult author, "Why the Best Kids Books Are Written in Blood" red hook projects by flickr user bondidwhat

12 "Street fictions [like] the novel True to the Game, satisfy a void that exists for marginalized people. Such communities of people are never validated or heard; their conversations fall through the cracks.[....]Like folklore and oral traditions, street fictions bring the urban poor together via conversation, gossip, and cultural talk about being in the same boat. Because street fiction is written in the African American Vernacular English (AAVE) and hip hop lingo (for the most part), both the everyday reader and the reluctant reader can find entry into the narratives—thus, upon reading them, they can apply what relates to them from the books to their worldviews and daily lives." --Vanessa Morris, Ed.D., Drexel iSchool Professor, "Inner City Teens DO Read" red hook projects by flickr user bondidwhat

13 Valentina and Makumba by Kelly Overton, Bronx Academy of Letters  Affirms identities  Reflects lived experiences  Can engage at a safe distance  Entertainment  Satisfaction/achievement  Connection with other readers  Wish fulfillment  Voyeurism  Risk-Free Thrill Why Teens Read Street Lit Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers

14 Books & Reading Suggestions Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig Sister Souljah The Coldest Winter Ever Tracy Brown White Lines Teri Woods Dutch Antoine “Inch” Thomas Flower's Bed

15 Authors to Know Ashley and JaQuavis Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig Nikki Turner K'wan Wahida Clark Tracy Brown

16 Keeping Up with What's New  Professional Journals  LJ: “Word on Street Lit”  Publishers Weekly  Street Lit Publishers  Triple Crown Publications  Urban Books  Melodrama Publishing  W. Clark Publishing  Top authors and series  Genre news sites  Streetliterature.com  Streetfiction.org  The Urban Book Source Library Shelves by flickr user Jamiesrabbits Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

17 Acquisitions and Reviews  Libraries can and must adapt to the changing needs of our communities!  Professional prepub reviews rarely available for street lit titles  Alternative criteria  Patron recommendations  Author or publisher's previous titles  Fan review sites  RAWSISTAZ reviewers  APOOO Book Club  Goodreads walk a crooked attic by flickr user jendubin Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

18 Street Lit in My Library? Strenuous by flickr user Seabamirum Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig  Shelving in public libraries  Adult or teen?  Interfiled or separate?  What about theft?  Suburban and rural libraries  Audiences  Creating pilot collections  School libraries  High school vs. middle school  Strategies for supporting teen street lit readers

19 Readers Advisory: First Steps Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig  Respecting street lit readers  The readers advisory conversation  Beyond street lit  Realistic teen fiction  “Street lit lite”  A world of possibilities... What should teen street lit fans read next? More street lit!

20 Readers Advisory: Making Connections Drama African American characters Poor & working class communities Overcoming adversity Wish fulfillment Concrete, external` action Brand names & fashion Authenticity Romance Popular culture Sex & sexuality Fast pace Realistic Teen Fiction e.g. Tyrell “Rich girl” books e.g. Gossip Girl Paranormal romance Action, e.g. Hunger Games “Street Lit Lite” e.g. Drama High Biography & Memoir Adult romance Horror Superhero comics

21 Advocating for Teen Street Lit Readers  Changing hearts and minds (including our own)  Work from your mission, not your fears  Next steps Fear - Graffiti by flickr user Jimee, Jackie, Tom, & Asha Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig

22 Final Thoughts  Trust street lit readers  Be proactive  Remember the mission cobblestone crisp by flickr user calm a llama down Supporting Teen Street Lit Readers – Megan Honig


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