By Katina Strauch, Editor
Whew! Beth Bernhardt, Leah Hinds, Tom Gilson, and I worked all weekend discussing proposals submitted for the 33rd Charleston Conference (November 6-9, 2013) (Theme: Too Much is Not Enough). We thought we only had 90 or so to discuss but with last minute proposals at the deadline, there ended up being over 250 of them! And they were all better than ever so it was a hard job to try to fit them all in the limited number of rooms that we have available. Hopefully by 2015, we will have a bigger venue at the refurbished Gaillard Auditorium, just down from The Francis Marion Hotel. Anyway, we hope to have a quick listing of many of the accepted proposals shortly up on the website. We realize that some people want to see more of the program before the Early Bird registration deadline which is August 16!
This is about the activities of one of our Charleston Conference regulars! Just learned that Karen Christensen, a Great Barrington resident and founder and CEO of the Berkshire Publishing Group, has founded the Berkshire Train Campaign with neighbors and business owners. The group is advocating for passenger rail service from the Berkshires to New York City. Karen became interested after returning from a trip to China in August of 2011. We in Charleston have been trying to get passenger rail between Charleston and Summerville and between Charleston and Columbia for some time! Wouldn’t that be nice?
Boo hoo! I was distressed to learn about the retirement of one of my favorite people, Irv Rockwood, the editor of CHOICE for the past 17 years! I remember when Irv first came to the Charleston Conference and wrote a fabulous editorial in Choice later in the year! Irv has been a longtime friend and supporter and I wish him nothing but the best in his retirement! Meanwhile, we at Against the Grain would like to welcome Mark Cummings who has been named editor and publisher of CHOICE. Cummings will serve as editor and publisher designate beginning June 17, 2013, and assume the position full time effective July 7, 2013! Welcome, Mark, and we hope to see you in Charleston in November!
Moving right along, I was intrigued to see news of the CHOICE e-Collection (CeC), the first collection of eBooks made up exclusively of titles reviewed by CHOICE. Currently consisting of several hundred titles spanning the entire liberal arts and sciences curriculum, the CeC presents CHOICE-reviewed titles from a growing list of publishers, including the University Press of Mississippi, Wesleyan University Press, M.E. Sharpe, McFarland, and Vanderbilt University Press, among others. The CeC features a free de-duping service that allows a library to determine within 48 hours which CeC titles it already owns. Publishers Row of Skokie, IL, hosts the CeC. There are three sales models offered for acquiring CeC titles: a traditional purchase or ownership model (with perpetual access), and two Patron Driven Acquisition (PDA) models—rent-to-own and rental only.