Teen Librarian Toolbox
Inside Teen Librarian Toolbox

Sassy is gone forever, but lucky you, there’s Teen Vogue

Women of  a certain age are still lamenting the early demise of Sassy magazine. To those of you who are nodding your heads right now, I implore you: give Teen Vogue a chance, and while you’re at it, gift a subscription to a young woman in your life.

Yes, Sassy was pivotal…

Sassy magazine cover featuring Curt Cobain and Courtney LoveHelmed by Jane Pratt, Sassy provided a marked departure from the other teen glossies that we ogled in grocery checkout lines. Remember the ’90s? Remember the red ribbons and the flannel and how we chained ourselves to trees and Rocked The Vote with the help of R.E.M’s longboxes? It was a big deal and Sassy got it. It got that we were more than teeny boppers into fashion and trendy music. It got that we were people, on our own, outside of being coupled with someone. And that was kind of revolutionary for a glossy teen fashion mag.

but Teen Vogue takes it to the next level, and then some.

cover of Teen Vogue; headline reads While Sassy treated us like people, Teen Vogue is treating today’s young women like the thoughtful, powerful, political, engaged movers and shakers they are. There was something in Lauren Duca’s gaslighting article that struck a chord with a much larger readership. Was it the concise, clear way that it laid out an issue and made it relatable? Was it how it used a political issue to steer young readers toward an understanding of abusive relationships without specifically saying that’s what it was doing? Was it the tone, which was authoritative but still comfortable? Was it the historical background informed by linguistics, politics, and pop culture? Yes. It was all of that, and thinking that it only had to be one of those is the specific problem that Teen Vogue is addressing: young women are not to be underestimated. I’ve said before that, for all of their problems, glossy fashion mags are, for some, the bible of girlhood. This one respects girls enough to know that eyebrows and crunches are but one facet of the lived experience of young women, that they spend a lot of time thinking, talking, and acting on a wide range of political, social, and personal issues regardless of the color of their nail polish.

This didn’t just happen

It’s been widely pointed out that perhaps the incisiveness of Teen Vogue is due to being helmed by Elaine Welteroth as Editor in Chief, the first African American woman to hold that position and only the second to be Editor in Chief at a Condé Nast publication. While Beauty Editor, she pushed for more inclusive coverage, a move that has translated well to feature articles. The team approach to direction of the magazine also includes creative director Marie Souter and Phillip Picardi as the digital editorial director who recalls a realization that magazines can be used for social good when he read an Anna Wintour letter in Vogue about marriage equality. The magazine’s boundary pushing approach is by design and being actively managed by a team that gets it.

We want more of it – A GIVEAWAY!

We can praise the editorial direction and forward thinking, inclusive content that’s respectful of its teen readership all we want, but we all know that it’s the dollars that matter in publishing. For this reason, the writers of the Teen Librarian Toolbox are sponsoring ten more subscriptions to Teen Vogue. Get one for yourself, get one for your library, get one for a classroom, get one for a teen. The first ten commenters below can pick their recipient of a one year subscription. Must be US addresses. After you leave a comment, please email Karen at kjensenmls at yahoo dot com (we don’t want you to leave your address publicly). The first 10 comments/emails get a free subscription.  Thanks for the interest all — we have our 10 subscriptions all accounted for.

What Others are Saying

Teen Vogue’s Political Coverage Isn’t Surprising

Teen Vogue’s Trump takedown is not a surprise

If You’re Shocked Teen Vogue Is Great, You’re Not Paying Attention

A user’s guide to Teen Vogue, which is quietly doing very good journalism

And Check Out These Teen Vogue Posts

Mike Pence’s Record on Reproductive and LGBTQ Rights

Why We Should Be Talking More About the Victims of the Charleston Church Shooting

National Parks May Be in Danger Under Trump Presidency

The Little-Known Federal Program That Is Concerning to Muslim Americans

Guys Read Sexual Assault Stories

A few of Karen’s favorite things . . .

Christmas is over so I won’t bore you with my witty intro that makes the song get stuck in your brain (mmmm . . . brains!)  No, I’ll just dive right into it.  These are my favorite things.

Collection Development Tools: Netgalley/Edelweiss

I work at a smaller library now, and run a blog, so I really use a lot of Advance Reader’s Copies (ARCs, or galleys if you prefer).  You can find them here (if the publishers approve you, and sometimes they don’t, which sometimes takes me back to the feeling in middle school I had when everyone picked me last to be on their kickball team.  To be fair, I did really stink at kickball.)  Anyhow, you request and ARC, if you get approved it sends it to your e-reader, and viola – books.  To date, I have bought every book I have read and loved via an ARC.  With a smaller budget, I like knowing that my teens are going to read it when I spend that money.  And as a bonus, I am better prepared when the new books come in to make recommendations, put together displays, and market, market, market because I have read the book.

Netgalley
Edelweiss

Emergency Craft Supply Must Have: Duct Tape

It comes in so many glorious colors and patterns. You can do so much fun stuff with it.  They have written whole books about it.  Whether you are doing ductagami or simply decorating notebooks and folders with it, I gotta have some on hand.

Proof That I Can’t Get Rid of Anything: Discarded Magazines

It should come as no surprise to you that I love words. Truly.  And you can do so many fun things with discarded magazines including decoupage, make your own magnetic poetry, marble magnets, guitar pick jewelry.  Sometimes, I will even just be talking to a teen who is a huge Twilight fan and I will go back in my office and get a discarded Seventeen out of my stash and give it to them – I am a hero!! I love being a hero.

Make Your Own Magnetic Poetry Kits

Social Media Addiction: Twitter

Twitter has a seriously rich book community – authors, publishers, librarians, book bloggers.  I am there every day and every day I learn about new books, share book/library love with my peers, and learn about new tech and teen trends.

Don’t Underestimate the Value of Twitter

It’s Absence Makes Me Ragey: ISBN Numbers

It brings me great joy when publisher ads and book reviews include ISBN numbers.  Yes, I am perfectly capable of going and looking them up.  But you know, it’s super nice when I don’t have to and I can just enter the ISBN number into my jobber and a title to my cart.  If I am using an online source, I can simply cut and paste it.  I will love you all hardcore if we can make it a point to add ISBN numbers with our book info.  And I will wholeheartedly admit that we do not always do that here at TLT.  Let’s make it our New Year’s Resolution to embrace the ISBN number.  Pinky swear.

An ode to the ISBN number:
You make my life so easy
When I don’t see you I get queasy
It’s true that I can go hunt you down
But seeing you turns smile from frown

Great books, now let me go look up the ISBN number
 
Yay- great books AND I don’t have to go look up the ISBN number
Best. Ad. Ever.

Most Benefit for Your Buck: Teen Volunteers

They rock! It seems like I shouldn’t have to say more than that.  But I guess I will.  I get to serve teens by helping them serve their community: win-win.  Plus, I get to spend time with them one-on-one and talk about things, if I am lucky that thing=books.

Can’t Live Without: VOYA and SLJ

I am not going to lie, I don’t really use these for the book reviews because the jobber we use has all the journal reviews in one place for me.  Okay, so I am still using their book reviews, just not in the traditional way.  I do, however, love these resources because of the following: Booklists, Programming Articles, Author Interviews, etc.  I also love to read the letters to the editor (I am a huge online comment junkie as well.)  Don’t forget to visit their online sites as well, lots of additional content.

VOYA
SLJ

What Do I Do Next? Post It Notes

Not only can you make art with them, but you can leave yourself little notes and stick them on your computer.  You will not be surprised to know that I find them all over with ISBN numbers written on them.  I leave myself one every day on my computer letting me know what I need to do tomorrow.  Sometimes I leave notes saying, “return Stephanie’s e-mail”, or “remind Christie to write that review,” or “bring back your really overdue library books.”  Librarians make the worst library patrons, just saying.

Post It Note Art

My Brain: My iPhone

Yes, it keeps me connected to Twitter.  But our tech at work is old and slow and I send my e-mail to it, use it to do quick searches on the Reference desk when our Internet decides it is trying to lose a race against a snail, and I take pictures. Tons and tons and tons of pictures.  Pictures at programs, pictures of books, random pictures when living my daily life.  You never know when you can turn one of them into an awesome RA poster, which I do often.  I have almost nothing but photography apps and photos on my cell phone. I have been known to pet my phone and call it “pretty”.  Also, The Mr. has banned it from the dinner table.

Last But Not Least: You – My Fellow Librarians

I steal some of my best ideas from you guys.  I mean borrow, I borrow some of my best ideas from you guys.  Best program I have ever done? Live Angry Birds courtesy of Heather Booth.  Most fun I had this year? I #mustacheyoutoread which was started by Kearsten at Glendale Public Library.  And who else is going to understand when I say, “when will we be done with the instalovetriangle business?”

So here we are, at the end of the year and these things have made my year rock! And I promise, as my New Year’s Resolution, I will never complain about the lack of ISBN numbers on ads again. Pinky swear.  Here’s looking forward to a great 2013.  I hope you all will continue to join us next year.  We’re all in this together :)