Frequently Asked Questions about the CCBC
Here are some of the questions we are commonly asked. But if you don't see the answer you are looking for here, don't hesitate to ask a question yourself. You can call the CCBC at 608-263-3720, or e-mail us.Can I send my newly published book to the CCBC?
Can you review my new book?
Our long name comes from a long history of being cooperatively, or jointly, funded by several different agencies. We are currently a library of the School of Education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and receive additional funding from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction through the Division for Librariesand Technology. Back to list.
There are a number of book examination centers affiliated with colleges and universities, libraries and school districts or statewide agencies around the country. But one of the things that makes the CCBC unique is its outreach mission to serve librarians and teachers across the state of Wisconsin. In this way, the library embodies the Wisconsin Idea. Back to list.
Although we are specifically funded to serve students, faculty and staff
on the UW-Madison campus, and school and public librarians and teachers
in Wisconsin, we welcome any adult who has an interest in children’s
and young adult literature.
You don't have to have a special ID or pass to come to the library, and dropping by unannounced is fine. But we encourage you to contact us ahead of time if you have a specific need or interest and would like to meet with a librarian during your visit or have books for pulled and waiting for you when you arrive.
Individuals make use of the CCBC in a variety of ways. We often assist students in UW-Madison classes, especially from the School of Education and School of Library and Information Studies, as they work on assignments for classes, or as they look for book ideas for their practicum or student teaching assignments.
Librarians from across the state visit the CCBC to examine newly published books firsthand as they decide what to purchase. Teachers at all levels come to the CCBC to look at books relating to a specific subject areas or themes. And many Wisconsin librarians and teachers use our Intellectual Freedom Information Services.
Established and aspiring authors and illustrators sometimes visit or use the library as well
The CCBC doesn’t have “members” and any adult is welcome to use the library. However, we do have a terrific library Friends group, and this is often what people are thinking of when they ask about "joining" the CCBC. The Friends of the CCBC supports the work that we do, including publishing CCBC Choices, our annual-best-of-the-year list. Back to list.
The CCBC is a noncirculating library, which means we don’t check books out.
We will loan books out for up to one-half hour if you need to photocopy or scan something--you will need to leave a photo ID at the Reference Desk while you have the books.
The good news is that this means the books are here when you need them, whether you’re coming from across campus or across the state. (Do call ahead if you are traveling--we do take books with us when we make off-campus presentations and want to help you plan a visit at a time when all the new books will be here.) And if you are working on a project, we are happy to hold books for you here at the library for several days so you don’t have to track them down again when you return.
If you need books for a class presentation, we encourage you to plan ahead in order to obtain the books you from another campus library, or from the Madison Public Library. If you are doing a practicum or student teaching in an area school, we also encourage you to see if the school library has what you need for using on-site. Back to list.
The CCBC is not designed for or funded to serve children or families directly. And no matter how much your child loves books and reading, the CCBC cannot match what the public library can offer. We encourage families to visit their local public library, which will provide them with a much more satisfying experience, including being able to take books home with them at the end of their visit! Back to list.
We can’t accommodate school groups or classes at the CCBC. However, we do make an exception for students who are studying Ellen Raskin’s Newbery Award-winning novel The Westing Game, as Ms. Raskin donated her manuscript to the CCBC so that students could see where books come from and how they are made. To inquire about seeing the manuscript materials by appointment, contact CCBC Director Kathleen T. Horning, 608-263-3721. Back to list.
In any given year we receive about 3,500 newly published books at the CCBC. Back to list.
No, with the exception of a very small number of books in Spanish that we keep as a sampling of what U.S. publishers are offering—most of these are translations of picture books previously published in English. We also do have some bilingual books; most of these are in Spanish/English. Back to list.
No, we only have print books. Back to list.
We don’t read every new book, but one or more of the librarians does examine every book that comes into the library. Many of them are subsequently read by one or more of us. Back to list.
Anyone can pick up a copy of the current CCBC Choices, our annual best-of-the-year list, here at the CCBC while supplies last. To order copies, go to our Choices page for complete information, including back issues available in print, and how to access back issues through Minds@UW, the UW-Madison Digital Library. Back to list.
The CCBC librarians read hundreds of new books throughout the year—at home, on the bus, in the car (but never while driving). We discuss what we’ve been reading with one another, and talk about books with others at our monthly discussions, or with librarians and teachers visiting the CCBC or whom we meet on our travels. Sometimes we seek out content experts who can provide insight we need to determine if a book is accurate or authentic to the experience portrayed.
We are looking for books that are well-written, authentic, entertaining, engaging, original, compelling, unique, provide content we know is important . . . in other words, there’s no single thing that makes a book a Choice. Our goal is to create a list of high-quality books that will meet a wide range of needs and interests.
All of our reading
and discussing and feedback informs our selection process, and in
the end it comes down to the books that the current CCBC
on. Because it's a list created by consensus, there
are always a number of books
we appreciate individually that don’t end up in Choices,
and others that we all liked, but not quite enough to make them a Choice. And
every year we find a few after the fact that we wish we’d included. Back
Every new book we receive is kept for at least twelve to eighteen months, usually as part of our Current Collection. Every six months we evaluate the oldest books in the Current Collection and withdraw many. Most of those that remain become part of our Basic Collection.
All of the books we withdraw go to the Friends of the CCBC, Inc, our library Friends group. Twice a year they hold a book sale, the proceeds of which helps fund their projects, which includes the annual CCBC Choices publication. We do not donate books to any other organization or cause. Back to list.
You are welcome to send us a copy of your new book, although we might already have it (most large trade book publishers in the U.S. send us review copies of their new books). New books are added to our Current Collection of newly published books.
If you are a current
or former resident of Wisconsin, we would love to
to the state, as we will add your book to our annual
identification record of books by Wisconsin book creators. Back
In a word, No. The CCBC does not regularly review books. We do write
about selected books for our annual best-of-the-year list, CCBC
Choices, and in several other contexts for specialized purposes
throughout the year, but we are not a regular review source and cannot
accommodate requests to review specific books. See the list of
Journals on our web site for sources that do regularly review newly
published books for children and teens. (Note: there is no guarantee
a journal will
review every book submitted; it can be particulary difficult for self-published
books to get reviewed by professional sources.
book has local
or regional interest, try newspapers and other media outlets in
the area. If you are in the Wisconsin or Midwest area, the Midwest
Book Review is another good resource.) Back
Can you give me feedback on my manuscript or help me get the children's book I've written published?
We can’t put you in touch with a publisher or agent, or offer feedback on your manuscript or portfolio. We also can't offer contract advice.
However, if you can come to the CCBC in person, you can spend time browsing our Current Collection of recently published books to see what U.S. publishers are producing. Pay attention to who is publishing what so you can better target specific publishers that seem a good fit for your own work, or whose books you especially admire. We also have resources in our Reference Collection on writing for children and teens, and on publishing.
The CCBC cannot help you market or promote your book. If we have a copy of it, we will make sure it is added to our Current Collection, so it is available to those using our library, and if you are a Wisconsin book creator, we will also add it to our identification record of books by Wisconsin authors and illustrators. Back to list.
We can try.
We’ll need to know whatever you can remember about it: characters, names, setting or anything else you can recall, such as the kind of book it was (picture book story, novel, informational book), whether it was a book you owned at home or obtained from a school or public library, and even what decade you read it during, if possible. (For example: “It was a novel about children who smuggle gold past Nazi soldiers on their sleds. I think I read it during elementary school in the 1970s.”) Contact us with as much information as you can remember. (By the way, the answer to the description above: Snow Treasure by Marie McSwigan.) With this information, we are sometimes—but not always—able to track the title down. (You can also check out the advice for finding old books on the Old Children's Books web site.)