Turning Open Access Academic Books into BIPOC Art Galleries

One of the best parts about my job as a ScholComm Librarian is working with amazing students on meaningful publishing projects. As part of a team working on a Dept of Ed funded grant with our National Resource Center for Asian Languages, I had the wonderful privilege of collaborating with a team of BFA and MFA illustrators to make Vietnamese language books in support of bilingual K-12 education in Orange County. One of our illustrators, a young, gifted and Black artist by the name of Leah Simone Metters, brought tremendous energy, creativity and leadership to the project.

Now that my Open Science book experiment on the First Gospel (Qn) is almost a year old, over 1000 pages, more than 325,000 words, has over 2500 unique downloads, and is the basis for an upcoming peer-reviewed presentation in the Digital Humanities section of the Society of Biblical Literature this November, it felt like the right time to take the book to the next level of professional publishing. So I decided to commission book cover art, and I could think of no artist better suited to realize my vision for the book than Leah.

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Personal OA Experiment: Transforming a Past Published Monograph to Open Access via Unglue.it

As an academic author and a passionate advocate for Open Access, I have launched a crowdfunding campaign on unglue.it to provide access to my 2013 monograph for everyone in the world and to lead by example in my work as a Scholarly Communication Librarian in the California State University system. The print book has been unavailable on commercial sites for over a year now. My hope is that a successful campaign will give a new life to this book, increase its usage and citations, and inspire many other faculty in the CSU to start similar campaigns to unglue their books to Open Access.

How Libraries Can Learn Not to Hate Commencement

This op-ed was published earlier today in the CSU Fullerton student newspaper, the Daily Titan.


Back in the pre-digital age, when university libraries bought physical resources, graduating students knew that the university library collections would continue to be there for them. Even if it meant a trip back to campus, that reservoir of curated knowledge would always be available to enjoy.

These days, graduating students are sadly, abruptly and completely cut off from most of the digital resources that we librarians work so hard to supply and teach students how to use.

How did this happen? How have libraries learned to hate commencement?

[Link to full article]

Crowd-Sourced Unlatching of Curricular Books: A Joint Pilot by the California State University, Knowledge Unlatched, and the Internet Archive

Updated May 13, 2020

My CNI presentation felt like it went really well, despite a couple wireless freezes during the session. A video recording is now available on Vimeo or embedded in the session event page, linked from the Coalition for Networked Information Spring 2020 Virtual Membership Meeting website.

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