Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Regression (Civilization) -- Fiction

In the realm of libraries, WorldCat is a really cool tool, a self-described "window to the world of libraries." As explained by Wikipedia, it's "the world's largest bibliographic database, built and maintained collectively by libraries that participate in the OCLC global cooperative. Created in 1971, WorldCat catalogs the content of more than 50,000 libraries in more than ninety countries. As of April 2006, it contains more than 63 million records referencing physical and digital items in more than 360 languages."

So I did a WorldCat search for the title of my forthcoming novel, Hurricane Moon (Pyr, July 2007.) And it came up. Oh, this is exceptionally cool. After working in libraries all my life as a student or staff, there's my book and my name:

by Alexis Glynn Latner
Language: English Type: Book : Fiction Internet Resource Internet Resource
Publisher: Amherst, N.Y. : Pyr, 2007.

Happily clicking to the next level of detail, I get this:

Hurricane moon

Hurricane moon

Language: English Type: Book : Fiction Internet Resource Internet Resource
Publisher: Amherst, N.Y. : Pyr, 2007. | Other Editions ...
ISBN: 9781591025450 1591025451 | OCLC: 86038541 | Cite this Item

Oh, joy, it's even cataloged as to subject! Regression (Civilization) -- Fiction isn't a subject heading I would have thought of. That link pulls up 45 titles including books by authors ranging from Philip K. Dick to Pat Murphy to Andre Norton, and Cormac McCarthy to Doris Lessing. Outer Space -- Exploration -- Fiction yields 230 titles of books and movies as well.

I also see Hurricane Moon listed as being in some libraries already. These libraries may have Pyr books ordered "on approval" and routinely get them all. A book like that can show up in the online catalog before it's actually available... or even published quite yet. Right now, a couple of months before its publication, Hurricane Moon is held by nine libraries. Leading the list is the Gwinnett County Library in the greater Atlanta area (735 miles.) WorldCat assumes you might want to go to the nearest library that has the book you want, and so it helpfully notes the distance from wherever you're logged on.

Libraries in Seattle, Pasadena, California, Albuquerque, and Flint, Michigan are also on the list. Then there's the British Library (4700 miles.) And that sounds like a fine reason for me to visit the British Library the next time I'm on that side of the world.


Alexander "SquidLord" Williams said...

The amusing thing ... the Gwinnett Library is my local library, merely a mile or so away.

Jess Nevins said...

I wish you joy of it, Alexis! The first time I saw my own name in WorldCat my delighted squeeing was audible for miles around....