I’m on a quest to eradicate YA from my library. Over the past year, I’ve never heard one person between the ages 12-19 call themselves young adult. At the same time, I don’t hear them call themselves teens, but you know, what can you do. Libraries are obsessed with labels, age groups, catalog, call numbers, and all that woopdiedoodah.
I turned to TEEN because, honestly, there isn’t a better option available. LAND OF AWESOME was something I preferred because I can say that I have a certain amount of pride about my area of the library. But LAND OF AWESOME isn’t gonna work. It’s too abstract or something. What about not having age distinctions in the library? I gave thought to that but I didn’t want to deal with the question “BUT WHAT ABOUT CHILDREN’S MATERIALS?” Color coding? A symbol based system? Audio clues?
The conclusion I came to? There is no answer. In my case, the YA stickers were old and crusty. They looked like mustard with the letters YA written on them in some horrible ketchup color. The TEEN stickers are a bit lame. You can tell the designer was trying to be hip and “turn kids onto books! with an exclamation point”. The catalog looks a lot nicer as well. Instead of being labeled as “j YA” we now have TEEN. It’s not perfect, but it’s something.
What are you doing in your library with call numbers and age designation? I’m curious to hear what you think.