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Friday, October 6, 2017

31 Days of Horror: Day 6-- Others On This Journey With Me

I am not the only one doing an October binge. Lots of other sites are engaged in some kind of 31 Day celebration, but many of them are not useful to you, the library worker.

Today, I will highlight a few of the others on this binge-worthy journey with me. Some even allow for you to follow along.

Every year the Horror Writers Association allows it’s member to participate in their Halloween Haunts, a blog-a-thon for the entire month of October. Participants are asked to share a Halloween memory, but they also talk about their own writing and their influences.  This is a great way for you, the library worker, to learn about current authors, how they write, why they write horror, and who their influences are. You don’t have to check it every day, but a couple of times this month click over and see what’s been posted.

Over at Booklist Reader, horror author and Booklist Editor, Daniel Kraus is hosting his ninth [!] annual 31 Horror Films in 31 Days challenge. With this link you can see the 2017 FAQ with all the rules on how to participate and links to past years’ recaps.  It is not too late to join him. I don’t participate but I do love following Daniel’s tweets about the movies he is watching. Those alone are worth the [free] price of admission.

Now let’s move to libraries specifically.  I would like to highlight two examples of what you can do to celebrate at your libraries.

Here is something that is highly effective and super easy-- The Chicago Public Library’s Halloween Page. They have fresh content-- blog posts, programming, lists, etc...-- running across the top of the page AND links to catalog searches for items, like books and films, in a variety of categories. Basically it’s everything Halloween based that CPL has for its patrons.

Even if you live no where near CPL, you can still use this page to help your readers. Get ideas, suggestions, and more. Also use it as an inspiration to create something for your library for next October, or even give it a go for another holiday or big event.

CPL’s page is easy for one person to do quickly, but what if you had a whole year to plan and wanted to celebrate the haunting season in style?

Well, enter Konrad, the Local History Associate for the Springfield-Greene County [MO] Library District. They are hosting an entire month of programming and events, including an appearance by Grady Hendrix! Here is a link to the PDF file of all of their activities. I have also turned each page into an image to attached at the end of this post.  But first, I have a report from Konrad on their very first program which happened earlier this week:
I just wanted to let you know that our Ozarks Urban Legends & Superstitions program had 109 people! That's more than double what I've had for any local history program, and local history programs get some of the best attendance. Kaitlyn McConnell talked about Ozarks Legends like The Blue Man, The Albino Farm, The Joplin Spook Light, and she used Kahoot! to interact with patrons on questions about Ozarks superstitions. I put out "Oh, the Horror!" fliers, our quarterly publication Bookends, and my business card in case anyone wanted to send me commentary or tell me about other programs they'd like to see, and people picked a lot of them up.
Great job Konrad.  And he still has a lot more planned.

Also, all you readers out there that think no one like horror [oh, I’ve heard it a lot, from many of you], Konrad and his results beg to differ. Stop making excuses and start taking horror seriously.

I hope this post encourages you to think about how you will celebrate Halloween at your library for the rest of this month and for years to come. Maybe it’s too late for a 31 Days event at your library this year, but it is the perfect time to be inspired to plan for next year.

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