Getting Graphic at ALA | ALA Annual 2015

Tuesday, Jul 21

This article has been updated to include information on Trajectory’s new deal with Image Comics and Recorded Books, iVerse, and Boopsie’s plan to expand Comics Plus: Library Edition.


By on June 30, 2015

The American Library Association’s (ALA) annual conference produced a crop of comics news, beginning with the Comic Book Club Handbook, a new resource produced by the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF) in collaboration with Comic-Con International, with the assistance of Erwin Magbanua of the San Diego Public Library and illustrated by cartoonist Rick Geary. Designed for retailers and individuals as well as librarians, it explains how—and why—to create a graphic novel book club. Print copies were distributed at the CBLDF booth; for those who missed it, a free download is available at (or if you’re lucky enough to be going to Comic Con International in San Diego this July, you can snag one there as well).

In addition, the third annual Will Eisner Graphic Novel Grants for Libraries, funded by the Will and Ann Eisner Family Foundation and administered by ALA’s Games and Gaming Round Table and the Graphic Novels & Comics in Libraries Member Initiative Group, were awarded at the conference.

The 2015 Will Eisner Graphic Novel Growth Grant was awarded to Yuma High School Library, Yuma, AZ. Its current graphic novel selection is only 2.69 percent of its collection, yet it accounts for 31.76 percent of its circulation. The library’s project—”Improving Literacy and Enriching Lives”—will expand its graphic novel collection. The 2015 Will Eisner Graphic Novel Innovation Grant was presented to Bellmore Memorial Library, Bellmore, NY, for its project “Picture Yourself: Using Graphic Novels to Explore the People and Perceptions of Bellmore.” The project aims to connect the library with a diverse local audience and document life in the town through book clubs, graphic novel workshops, and the opportunity for patrons to write and illustrate their own Bellmore stories.

Each of the grants awards the winning libraries with a $2,000 voucher to purchase graphic novels from the distributor-partner Diamond Book Distributors, $1,000 to host a graphic novel-themed event, and a $1,000 stipend to attend the conference, plus a collection of Will Eisner’s work and biographies and copies of the graphic novels nominated for this year’s Will Eisner Awards at San Diego Comic-Con.

Read the complete article here.