Like many libraries, you are likely highlighting Black authors on your website and social media right now for Black History Month in February. You likely have plans for next month to promote women authors and titles. And this is great! However, these are actions we need to think about making year-round. Patrons long to see themselves in the books they read all year long. They also want to read from a variety of perspectives (think windows and mirrors). Even though your doors might be closed there are still ways to promote diverse authors to your community:  

Start a reading challenge

Glenview Public Library is running a “Reading is a window” Winter Reading Program: “Challenge yourself to read books that present a diverse and inclusive worldview.”

The Suggested Reading lists all link to a variety of diverse lists (#MadeinLibraryAware!) and include a variety of genres and author backgrounds, including Own Voices lists.  You can also have a look at the first-ever NoveList Book Challenge here.  

Add a widget to your library’s website 

Harford County Public Library has an incredible display of book widgets on their “What to read next!” page, including highlighting fiction and non-fiction by black authors. The Recommended Adult Booklists page includes a widget for Adult LGBT books as well as Celebrating Black History Each Day, Every Day. We highly recommend you poke around their website for some truly great digital browsing inspiration.  

Share on social  

Social media promotion has become increasingly important in these days of social distancing and is an easy and effective way to highlight your diverse collection digitally. Scituate Town Library uses Facebook to post about Black Voices in Fiction. Peace Library System uses their Facebook to share Black Canadian History and Life Stories, showcasing a collection of autobiographies and memoirs.  

LibraryAware customers have access to *tons* of ready-made flyer and widget templates that can easily be shared to social media.  

We’re here to help 

Search in NoveList to find titles for diverse promotion. For example, you could create a widget or flyer featuring memoirs by Jewish authors, highlight novels by LGBT+ authors, or spotlight nonfiction by Latinx authors.   

Use the Advanced Search menu to search by author’s cultural identity, including African American, Asian American, Black Canadian, First Nations, Hispanic American, Jewish, Māori, Muslim, and more. Hold down the shift key to select multiple options. You can also search by author’s gender identity.   

Want to create your own diverse author promotion in LibraryAware?

Molly Wyand is a Communications Specialist for NoveList. She's currently reading Transcendent Kingdom by Yaa Gyasi.