How to Make a Readers’ Advisory Graphic

DIYRAG

A few commenters have asked how I make the RA graphics featured on this blog,  so I’m going to break it down in this post. It’s really not that hard, though it can be time-consuming. I have faith that y’all can do it!

Step 1: Pick a theme – The possibilities are limitless. You can make a genre graphic, readalike graphic, book suggestions based on other media people enjoy, etc… There are plenty of great examples out there. I think that Molly over at Wrapped Up in Books makes some wonderful graphics. Pinterest is also an excellent place to find examples. If you draw inspiration from someone else’s creation (especially if you are reworking something they’ve already done), credit them.

Step 2: Find your titles – Once you’ve picked your theme, you need to decide what titles you will feature on your graphic. You can pull from your own knowledge or use outside sources. NoveList is a great resource for finding readalikes and most libraries have a subscription to it. I will sometimes use lists from sources like Buzzfeed or Flavorwire. If you do that, make sure to credit them in your post.

Step 3: Put it all together – This is the really time-consuming part. I use Publisher because it’s easy to import and arrange images and I have access to all of my own fonts. All of the jacket images I use come from our catalog. I sometimes incorporate Microsoft’s free stock photos and Creative Commons images from Flickr. Again, make sure to credit appropriately if you use a CC image from Flickr. For fonts, I use Fontspace or dafont to find relevant fonts for my graphics. Many of their fonts are free for personal use and some are free for commercial use. Check the license before using any font. Once I have everything set up how I want it look, I group it together and then save it as an image. Occasionally I will upload it to a free, online photo editor to add extra flourishes. My favorites are: PicMonkey, iPiccy, fotor, & befunky. After adding finishing touches, I share the graphic with the world on various social media sites and this blog.

So there you have it – three steps to making an RA graphic! Go forth and create!

Book Recommendations for your Vacation Destination

summer reading

Another graphic I created for our library Tumblr page.

Image credits:

Pofu Camp – Northern Circuit” by Gopal Vijayaraghavan on Flickr.

Desert Road” by William Warby on Flickr.

Paris.2012” by Emax-photo on Flickr.

Font Credit:

Confetti Stream” by Jonathan S. Harris on FontSpace.

Spark a Reaction – 2014 Teen Summer Reading Program

TeenFBCoverPhoto

It’s hard to believe that Summer Reading is almost here (or already here for some of you). Teen programs are on hiatus for the month of June at my library because bridesmaid duties are taking over my life, but our Summer Reading Program will start up July 1st. This year I’m doing things a little differently. Instead of using BINGO cards and doing random drawings each week, I’ve created a book log. Teens will keep track of all the titles they read in July (including fan fiction), whoever reads the most books wins the grand prize. If they read five books, they will earn a prize and an invitation to the after-hours awards party.

I’ve also got lots of activities planned: two LEGO robotics classes, crafts, weekly movies, and a video-making club. My book club teens have been begging to make a movie, so I’m making their dreams come true. I have some video-editing experience, but we all be learning together (which is fun).

Here are some of the handouts I’ve created for SRP packets this year:

Calendar of Events

Reading Log

Recommended Reading List

I would love to hear what other librarians have planned for this summer. Tell me in the comments!