The Distribution of My Dearest Mama’s Cookbook

In these times of economic woe and supposedly faltering print media, it is apparently, according to many people I know who have tried, very difficult to get a book published. And yet, not too long ago, my dearest mother did just that. Many years ago in the late 1990s when I had yet to hit double digits and I still lived in middle-of-nowhere Illinois, my mother decided to write a book. At the time married to a deer hunter, she saw the need for an easy-to-digest (Ha!) book for those new to cooking with venison that would demystify the meat and provide simple, tasty recipes.

And hence, a book was born:

It was sold at various retailers and given to many a family member. We were and are extremely proud of her accomplishment.

However, until recently I never considered something so basic: my mom’s cookbook is in libraries. Probably in multiple states! A quick search on WorldCat produced amazing results: there are (at least) 228 copies of my mother’s book in libraries across the country and around the world! There are copies in libraries in 41 states (states that still need to get on the ball: Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Maryland, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont) and three countries (USA, Canada, and New Zealand)! I know that as a library science student who understands how widely resources can circulate throughout systems I shouldn’t be surprised by this. But I have to say I’m blown away! To think that someone in Mississippi or Alaska or New Zealand could go in and check out my mother’s book is amazing to me. It is a testament to the positive outcomes of globalization – that information, even in print form, can travel so far and be represented in so many places.

All this is just to say that libraries and librarians are awesome (especially the ones that purchased my mother’s book) and that knowing so many people have access to something my mother slaved over, poured her soul into, and finally got published gives me the warm and fuzzies.

Also, on a lighter note, the back cover of her book will forever serve as evidence that she held onto that ’80s perm well into the ’90s:

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