Cataloguing


This page is for cataloguing questions and tips that people may have.
At this point we have two questions:
1. Why are scary stories are found in nonfiction?
2. When the given call number results in books being separated when you want those books together, what helpful thoughts do people have?

The following two postings are responses from a question on ISLMANET. The question was, Why are scary stories are found in nonfiction?

As others have said, it's because they're based on folklore.

That said, it's *your* decision as to where to catalog things. Many items can be in several places in Dewey. Fiction should technically all be in the 800s, but that just gets silly! :)

In my building, we recently moved the Scary Stories series, the Short & Shivery series, the Dare to be Scared books, and similar items from the folklore section to our Short Stories collection. We'd already had The Dark-Thirty in our Short Stories collection, so it made sense to move them all there. There are several creepy collections of short stories, folklore, and/or a mix of the two, and the kids seem to have an easier time finding what they want.

When I'm cataloging items and I'm not sure where I want to put it, I do three things-- I look at what other items would be next to it in our current collection given number A or number B, I look at what other items in our collection have the same subject headings and where they're shelved, and I look up the items in the catalogs of my fellow schools and in my husband's public library consortium (they have somewhere around two dozen libraries!). It's amazing how different the numbers can be.

Here's where libraries in my husband's consortium have variously stuck the Scary Stories books:

133.1
398
398.2
398.25
398.7
398.7 U.S.
808.83
JUV FICTION SCH
JUV PAPERBACK S
J PB SCH
J MYSTERY SCH

This related question emerged from the question about why scarey books are in non-fiction: When the given call number results in books being separated when you want those books together, what helpful thoughts do people have?

For a similar comparison, look at all of the places where people stick the Chicken Soup for the Soul books:

155.4 [preteen, kids]
158.1 [most of them]
158.12 [most of them]
158.128
158.1280835 [teenage]
242 [christian teenage]
242.63 [christian teenage]
305.235 [teenage]
808.831
YA P [this means YA paperbacks]

Kate Hahn
Jewel Middle School
North Aurora, IL


Excellent advice from Kate Hahn!

I would only add a fourth (and final) consideration to Kate's three -
When I have established all the legitimate options in assigning a call
number (and thus establishing location of materials), I select the one
that would seem logical from my student's perspective. In other words,
where will it work best for the kids?

Example: American Girl original series would be scattered if assigned
call numbers are based on authors as is the standard. Obviously they
are accessible in the card catalog through the series search, but it
best serves my students if they are collocated. I hesitate to just give
this series their own shelf without reflecting that in the call number,
however, so I have assigned them a call number prefix of AG. I don't
recommend exceptional treatment of very many items, but it is my belief
that an exception, carefully weighed, can suit the needs of my clients.
So my American Girl books would look like this:

AG
Fic
Tri

AG
Fic
Sch

Marcia Brandt, Director of Library Media Services
Herscher, Bonfield and Reddick Grade Schools, Herscher CUSD #2, 510
North Main Street, Herscher, Illinois 60941
815 426-2242 x4102 / brandtm@hsd2.k12.il.us