Get ready to vote! The YALSA election runs from March 19 through April 25, and to help you be an informed voter, we’re sharing interviews with each of the 2014 candidates for YALSA Award Committees.YALSA_173x79

This week we are focusing on the Michael L. Printz Award Committee, which honors the best book and up to four honor books written for teens, based entirely on literary merit, each year.

Candidates, who will be presented in alphabetical order, were asked to craft “Twitter-length” responses (i.e. around 140 characters). Full biographical information on all of the candidates can be found on the sample ballot.

Today we have an interview with Franklin Escobedo.

Name and current position: Franklin Escobedo, Principal Librarian, Young Adult Services, Oceanside Public Library

Why did you decide to run for a YALSA selection committee?

Honestly I’ve hemmed and hawed about running for a selection committee like Printz. It’s a huge commitment, but worth all the time in the world if it gets best book in the hands of teens.

In a nutshell, what will you bring to the committee?


What experience do you have with materials selection and evaluation?

I’ve served on PPYA for 4 years, also have been on OBCB. I’m responsible for developing my library’s YA collection & several collections in the adult areas, large type, urban fic, and arts & crafts.

What makes you a good fit for this committee in particular?

Serving on PPYA gave me a greater appreciation for popular titles, but sometimes literary quality was lacking. I’m always looking for novels that move the reader or make you see the world in a new light.

How do you plan to manage the reading load required by selection committee participation?

This has always been a challenge, but sometime you read into the wee hours of the night. But it has to get done.

What have been some of your favorite past winners of this particular award?

Going Bovine is still one of my favorites.

What books should have won the award, but didn’t?

This is a hard question, so many of the honors would have been great winners, hence they’re honors.

What else do voters need to know about you?

I’m a big advocate for reader’s advisory. I read as much as possible so I can share this with my teens, often reading outside my comfort zone- that’s when you discover hidden gems in your collection.
This interview was cross-posted on The Hub and the YALSAblog.

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