Even the most voracious reader hits a point in time where the usual authors and standby genres are not satisfactory. Trying to find something to read in a building that can have tens or hundreds of thousands of books can be overwhelming to the most savvy library user. Enter the humble library display to the rescue.
Providing relevant displays close to the entrance of the library or section of the library where users visit is a great way to increase circulation. Not only this, but it is a great way to showcase more than just the latest best sellers. Themed displays that relate to what is happening in the news can showcase the breadth of the library’s holdings. For example, in April 2013, the US lost a beloved film critic, Roger Ebert. Enter a quasi memorial display in the library: his biography, books on film ratings, DVDs of films he rated. Easy right?
April 2013 saw another well known person’s death, that of Hollywood teen idol Annette Funicello. A display of her Beach Blanket Bingo movies, Mickey Mouse Club shows (both past and present); CDs of Annette’s songs, Mickey Mouse Club and Disney songs and her autobiography make a relevant display of materials for those who grew up knowing her.
The third major death in the news in April 2013 was that of Margaret Thatcher. Immediately thoughts went to the new movie starring Meryle Streep, The Iron Lady, on DVD. Both autobiography and biography as well as books analyzing her political career make an interesting display of people looking to seek more information on this illustrious leader.
Keeping an eye out for newsworthy items and the zeitgeist will keep items that are not usually sought in front of the eyes of the patrons. It is not only newsworthy items, however, that can make interesting displays. Programs given at the library lend themselves to items for further reading.
For example, a memoir writing workshop can be a great tie-in for books on writing style, writing memoirs, actual written memoirs and books on the writing life in general. Art programs benefit from books on different artistic techniques, books on artists who specialize in that technique, museum coffee table books and the like.
In short, if you keep your eyes open, there is an almost unlimited amount of material within the library to use for making displays that are fresh and relevant. Do not be worried that they go fast; there will be more material for a new display as close as your local news site or paper.