Tomorrow marks the tenth anniversary of Monster Librarian.
The first review was published on January 1, 2006. The Monster Kid had just recently joined the family, and Dylan was working two jobs and going to school part-time to earn a master’s degree in library science. His internship in a public library, and his experiences in library school, showed him how disregarded the horror genre was in libraries, and as a lover of genre fiction he felt this was a real disservice to both readers and libraries. There is also research showing that horror and suspense are successful hooks for reluctant readers, and developing lifetime readers is essential for both individuals and society (this is part of why our original logo is of a kid literally reading to survive). But mostly he just wanted to connect readers of all kinds and all ages with books, and since most of the librarians he encountered had no interest in or knowledge of horror fiction beyond the most perfunctory, he felt that a resource like this was a need for the library community.
Much has changed since then. A lot of the debate over ebooks and self-publishing has been put to rest. The Internet has made small presses more accessible. Mainstream publishers, who had more or less abandoned the horror genre, are publishing horror again. Vampires have ceded their popularity to zombies, and all kinds of people have embraced horror tropes in popular culture, across a variety of media. The horror genre is more diverse and welcoming than it was ten years ago, and that’s really fantastic. What hasn’t changed is our desire to help match readers to books that will make them want to keep reading, to paraphrase S.R. Ranganathan, and to celebrate the love of reading whatever you love as reflected in our Genre Reader’s Bill of Rights.
Now is a good time for reflection and for input from you, our readers. Where should we go from here? What is most useful to you? Is there something you’d like to see here that we haven’t covered? Comment here or on our Facebook page, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me what you’d like to see.
Here’s to a great 2016!