Recently on YALSA-YAAC there has been some discussion regarding the terminology used to define library services to 12 – 18 year olds- is the term “young adults” an appropriate label for this age? Or is “young adults” more appropriate for the’ 19 – 35 age range?’ ‘ What ages should we be providing services for?’  Check out the discussion at

I’ve always struggled with the term “young adult” because as someone in the under 30 set, I’ve always considered myself a young adult.’  I have begun refering to my department “Teen Services” because not only is that the terminology that my target audience identifies for themselves, but it also clarifies the confusion for patrons unfamiliar with the ‘ library terminology.’  The biggest adjustment has been for staff, who struggle to no longer refer to the Young Adult area (recently named The Teen Zone through a vote of’  teen regulars) or me as the Young Adult Librarian (I go by Teen Services Librarian now).’  Officially, my library defines my service age as 13 – 18, truly the teen years, however I also provide services to the 10 – 12 year old set as well in collaboration with the Youth Services department.’  I believe that is how teen librarians should address the 19 – 25 set as well, through collaboration with Adult services.’ 

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Even though it is only April, I’m already starting to get excited about Annual Conference in Chicago.’  Chicago is one of my favorite cities (even if ALA is late this year and so the Taste of Chicago won’t be going on at the same time). Those of you who are not sure about the ALA/Proquest Scholarship Bash, the Art Institue of Chicago is wonderful and worth seeing while you are there.’ 

The reason that I am most excited about this year’s Annual Conference though is that I am a member of the Best Books for Young Adults Committee (aka BBYA).’  This will be my first time meeting with the other BBYA folks and I’m really looking forward to some good debating on the many great titles that have been nominated so far.’  Read More →

Still thinking about registering for the Young Adult Literature Symposium? Check out these great goodies that each attendee will receive at the Symposium. These great badge holders are being sponsored by Scholastic and the conference bags are sponsored by Harper Teen. And, don’t forget you can read more about the Symposium on the YALSA Wiki and also register on the YALSA web site. (Click on each image to see a larger version.)
YA Literature Symposium Bag- sponsored by Harper TeenYA Literature Symposium badge holder- sponsored by Scholastic

YALSA will be offering two stipends up to $1,000 each to attend the first Young Adult Literature Symposium. One stipend will be awarded to a library worker who works directly with young adults and the other will be awarded to a student enrolled in an ALA accredited MLS program with a focus on serving young adults in a library setting.

Have a YALSA personal membership
One to Ten years of serving teens in a professional library setting (for library worker applicants) or enrollment in an ALA Accredited MLS program (student applicants)
Incomplete submissions will not be considered

Applications can be downloaded from the Young Adult Literature Symposium website

Application and current resume must be sent to by Midnight, May 1, 2008. Supporting statements from a professor or employer must be emailed seperately and received by the same date. (Make sure that your name and “supporting statement” are included in the subject line).

Criteria for selection:
Candidate’s commitment to Young Adult library services
Candidate’s desired learning outcomes for attending the conference
Candidate’s financial and professional development needs
Strength of supporting statement

Winners will be announced July 7, 2008.

Questions should be directed to Nichole Gilbert at or 1.800.545.2433 x4387

PS-Be sure to check out the Young Adult Literature Symposium Sponsorship Opportunities page and thank the sponsors at ALA this summer.

Registration for housing for the Young Adult Literature Symposium opened today. Rooms at the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel will cost $119 per night. For information on how to reserve your room, check out the Young Adult Literature Symposium website

Registration for the symposium itself will open on May 1, 2008.


Early Bird Special
Registration is only $195 for YALSA members and Tennessee Library Association/Tennessee Association of School Librarians members. Only registrations postmarked or made online by September 1, 2008, will be eligible for this special rate.

$195 YALSA Personal Member
$195 TLA/TASL Personal Member
$245 ALA Personal Member

$300 Nonmembers
$50 Students (enrolled full-time in a library program)

Optional preconference: $75

Advanced Registration
Advanced registration runs September 2 – October 3, 2008.

$245 YALSA Personal Member
$245 TLA/TASL Personal Member

$295 ALA Personal Member
$350 Nonmember
$50 Student (enrolled full-time in a library program)

Optional preconference: $75

Onsite Registration Fees
Onsite fees apply to registrations made on or after October 4, 2008.

$270 YALSA Personal Member

$270 TLA/TASL Personal Member
$320 ALA Personal Member
$375 Nonmember
$75 Student Member

Optional preconference: $75

Save the date! The first-ever Young Adult Literature Symposium, funded in part by the William C. Morris Endowment, will be held November 7 – 9, 2008 in Nashville, TN. This year’s theme “How We Read Now” features a great slate of programs.

Hit List or Hot List: How Teens Read Now (Rosemary Chance and Teri Lesesne )
Inside the Authors’ Studios: Award Winners Right Out of the Gate (Lisa Wemett and Olivia Durant )
Never Enough Nonfiction (Pam Spencer Holley)
Listening to Literature (Sharon Grover and Francisca Goldsmith)
Just Keepin’ It Real: Teens Reading Out of the Mainstream, presented by Rollie Welch
Reading: It’s Not Just about Books Anymore (Linda Braun)

Thrilling Young Adults: How to Keep the Attention of Today’s Teens (Amy Alessio)
Quickest of YALSA’s Quick Picks (Diana Tixier Herald and Diane P. Monnier)
Zine-a-Paloosa 2008: Teens and Zines! (Julie Bartel)
Explaining and Exploring Fandom, Fan Life, and Participatory Culture (Liz Burns and Carlie Kraft Webber)
Beyond the Rainbow Canon: Books for LGBT Teens (Angie Miraflor and Daisy Porter)
Books between Cultures (Mitali Perkins)
Connections: YA Literature and Curriculum (Jane P. Fenn)
Teen Readers’ Advisory: How Research Informs Practice (Jessica E. Moyer)

Four papers will be presented as well:
Are You There God? It’s Me, Manga: Manga as an Extension of Young Adult Literature (Lisa Goldstein and Molly Phelan)
The Age of Blank? Connecting YA Readers to Each Other and the World (Tom Philion)
Accept the Universal Freak Show: LGBTQ Themes in Contemporary YA Literature and Incorporating Them @ your library (Angie Manfredi)
Bullies, Gangs, and Books for Young Adults (Stan Steiner)

If all this wasn’t enough for one weekend, the Symposium will kick off with a special Pre-Conference on Graphic Novels and Manga. There will also be special breakfasts, lunches and other really fun events!

Registration will begin sometime around May 1st. There will be two Symposium Scholarships- one for a practicing librarian and one for a library school student who is focusing on teen services. More details will be coming soon.

For more information, visit the Young Adult Literature Symposium website, A wiki will be coming soon.