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Cosplay in Libraries

How to Embrace Costume Play in Your Library

Ellyssa Kroski

Cosplay, comics, anime, and geek culture have exploded into the mainstream over recent years and have resulted in a thriving community of costume enthusiasts and pop culture fans. Today’s cosplayers find inspiration on the pages of comics, classic literature, and even history, as well as film, television, and video games to inform their creative and oftentimes elaborate ensembles. They utilize all manner of materials and techniques including 3D printers, thermoplastics, craft foam, fabric and more to design their costumes and props.

Libraries on the leading edge are already embracing this new worldwide sensation by integrating cosplay into their programming and events. Learn all about the world of cosplay and how you can host cosplay events, workshops, makerspaces, clubs, and more in your library!

This one-stop guide includes quotes and interviews with librarians who are incorporating cosplay into their programming as well as with cosplayers. You’ll also find 32 full-color photographs of cosplay in action to give you both ideas and inspiration for getting started!
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Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
Pages: 168Size: 7 1/4 x 10 3/8
978-1-4422-5647-7 • Hardback • October 2015 • $95.00 • (£65.00)
978-1-4422-5648-4 • Paperback • October 2015 • $50.00 • (£32.95)
978-1-4422-5649-1 • eBook • October 2015 • $47.00 • (£31.95)
Ellyssa Kroski is the Director of Information Technology at the New York Law Institute as well as an award-winning editor and author of 34 books including Law Librarianship in the Digital Age for which she won the AALL's 2014 Joseph L. Andrews Legal Literature Award. Her ten-book technology series, The Tech Set won the ALA's Best Book in Library Literature Award in 2011. She is a librarian, an adjunct faculty member at Pratt Institute, and an international conference speaker. She blogs at Cosplay, Comics, and Geek Culture in Libraries. Her professional portfolio is located at: http://www.ellyssakroski.com

Ellyssa is also an avid cosplayer and has appeared on TLC's Cake Boss TV show as well as in the official music video for New York Comic Con and many other events. Her cosplay portfolio can be found at http://giallogirl.com. Contact her at ellyssakroski@yahoo.com.
Chapter One: What is Cosplay?
Chapter Two: Getting Started: Tools of the Trade
Chapter Three: Places to Go, People to See
Chapter Four: Cosfamous
Chapter Five: Libraries Embracing Cosplay
Chapter Six: Cosplay Programming for Libraries
Project 1: Host a Comic or Anime Con in your Library! 
Project 2: How to Host a Cosplay Contest
Project 3: How to Form a Cosplay Club in Your Library
Project 4: How to Host a Cosplay Props 3D Printing Event
Project 5: How to Host a Create Your Own Armor with Worbla Event
Project 6: How to Host an Armor Painting Event
Project 7: Budget Cosplay Event: How to Create an Infinity Gauntlet with Craft Foam
Project 8: Budget Cosplay Event: How to Create Cardboard Superhero Helmets
Project 9: Budget Cosplay Event: How to Create Papier Mache Minions
Project 10: How to Host a Cosplay Cards Workshop
Project 11: Host a Cosplay Web Presence Workshop
Project 12: Plan a Themed Cosplay Lock-In
Chapter Seven: Cosplay Issues, Tips, and Tricks
Chapter Eight: Must-Have Cosplay Resources

Appendix A: Cosplay Event Activities
Appendix B: Suppliers Directory
Appendix C: Cosplayers Directory
Appendix D: Photographers Directory
Appendix E: Cosplay Websites & Blogs Directory

About the Author
In this volume, Kroski demonstrates her love of cosplay and argues for the inclusion of fandoms in the library space. Beginning with defining cosplay and the many different types of fandoms that participate, the author delves into the various ways that libraries can integrate cosplay into their collections and programming, citing several examples of institutions that are doing it successfully. Kroski’s direct address of the relevance of cosplay for fostering learning also serves to educate those who do not see its role in the library. While there are many books on cosplay and the culture surrounding it, this work includes a plethora of resources and ideas for a variety of budgets and locations, as well as helpful advice on the challenges planners may face. Verdict: Kroski provides an essential reference for librarians and library staff interested in bringing cosplay into their setting. This work will be invaluable for those who are unsure of how to get started and are looking for a guide to walk them through the process. The chapter on programming ideas will be particularly useful as the author clearly presents the key elements involved in putting an event together successfully.
School Library Journal

Cosplay in Libraries is a treasury of hands-on instructions, practical programming advice, informational resources and even a few of the finer points of geek culture. Kroski brings expertise and enthusiasm to a topic that may surprise you with its relevance to libraries. Whatever your level of experience with cosplay and event planning, whether or not your library is new to fandom-style programming, you’ll learn something new, fun and interesting from this book.”
Jason Puckett, Librarian for Communication and Virtual Services, Georgia State University Library, and author of Zotero: A Guide for Librarians, Researchers and Educators

Fandom is a powerful model for self-organizing communities of enthusiasm, and Libraries are naturally positioned to roll out the welcome mat to fandoms of all types! Cosplay is a big part of modern fandom, and Ellyssa's book gives library staff of any level, at libraries of any scale, what they need to pitch, plan, and present a dynamite Cosplay experience for library users new and old.
Eli Neiburger, Deputy Director, Ann Arbor District Library

Whether you are just starting to explore the fascinating world of cosplay or are a seasoned veteran of the cosplay, comic, anime and general “geek culture”, I can guarantee that Cosplay in Libraries will be a worthwhile and engaging read. Ellyssa Kroski covers all possible topics that a librarian would need to know in order to successfully integrate cosplay in to programming at their own library. Filled with ideas, resources, practical advice and much more, this book is a must buy for any library considering hosting a comic con or any other type of cosplay event. The staff at Princeton Public Library in Princeton, NJ found it immensely useful in guiding their own efforts to plan their first ever comic con.
Janie Hermann, Public Programming Librarian, Princeton Public Library, Princeton, NJ