Blog - Library Services Centre

The summer wanes and the world begins once again to smell of red leaves and pumpkin spiced drinks. We're taking Sept 7th to relax before leaning into the fall. Enjoy yourself.

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We're taking Monday off for teh Civic Holiday, same as all our friends in Alberta, BC, Saskachewan, Ontario, New Brunswick, and Nunavut. Everyone else, we'll see you on Tuesday.

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Canada Day falls on a Wednesday this year, and Wednesday we'll be closed. But here all the more enthusiastically the rest of the week. So have fun, eh?

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LSC, as with the world, was thrown a curve ball back in March. For the first time in our history, we had to shut down completely, as did many of you. Since then, we've been working to get back to work. It is gratifying to say that, as of June 22nd, LSC is back to 100% operations. We know you have many questions, so today we thought we'd answer some of the ones we've been getting the most.


What happens to the FPP?

LSC sent out the second installment Fixed Price Processing Plan invoices on schedule on May 1st, largely just as part of our internal processes. However, we were then as we are now well aware of the detrimental effect COVID has had on library budgets, and that anyone on the FPP will have dramatically different unit numbers. We also know that many libraries won’t know the full extent of this difference until later in the year.


To help with this, we extended the period for volume adjustments to August 1st, as we understand that actual unit volumes for 2020 may have been impacted. So, when you determine what your adjusted budget will be, we can then estimate the number of units (based on the average cost of material) and then adjust the units purchased accordingly.


How long will materials take to arrive?

As of today, we do not anticipate delays in receiving materials from major publishers. Material that has been postponed has been updated with new dates in our catalogue, and publishers have not informed us of any major delays. If this changes, we will let you know. 


Our internal processes have been changed to ensure the health and safety of our employees and clients. Quarantine periods have been placed on material at various stages, which will cause it to slow down in our internal process. However, we have structured these processes so that, as much as is possible, where is it under our control, there will be no significant delays of shipping materials from LSC. For material ordered pre-pub, our intent is get it to you before or by street date, the same as always. 


The commercial courier industry is seeing increased demand at this time, and has had to create new guidelines for itself. Next day delivery is rare these days. As such, when your materials is sent by commercial shippers, there may be minor (and in rare cases, longer) delays in materials reaching you. We will try as much as possible to take these delays into account when we ship, but the best the couriers can give us is an estimate for delivery. They especially cannot guarantee delivery within specific time windows right now. However, libraries on LSC's private route should see no delays. 


That being said, we are all adapting to the new regulations and will undoubtedly encounter unexpected hiccups. We ask for your patience as you no doubt will require ours at some point, and together we will get back on track. 


What is the situation with Multilingual materials?

Back in February, multilingual was the collection type we most expected to be impacted by COVID. This is because the material is coming from country of origin, and with each country having been hit differently by the crisis, we knew there would be some struggle. Additionally, many of our vendors bring material from country of origin to Canada via the US, and... well, it's a different situation down there right now. As such, availability will vary depending on the language and where it is coming from.  


Broadly speaking, most of our vendors are reporting delays of some kind. However, many shipments were received by our vendors before the lock down happened, which means there may be some material available throughout the summer. It is likely that the biggest delays will be felt later in the year. The situation is changing constantly though, and we are keeping in touch with our vendors for updates. If you would like a more specific estimate on the languages that you collect, please reach out to Julie Kummu and she can help.


What steps is LSC taking for internal Health & Safety?

LSC is fortunate to have a large plant which has allowed us to implement social distancing measures and health & safety features that other businesses are struggling to adjust to. We acknowledge our privilege in this regard. All of our employees who can work from home will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. This includes many of our customer service, selection service, marketing, systems, and cataloguing departments. This has also enabled us to spread our processing team over the entire footprint of our building, giving everyone the space they need.


Items that are received by LSC are quarantined before they are unpacked. Internal processes have been streamlined to eliminate unnecessary touch points. Masks are mandatory inside LSC, and in some areas face shields. All shipped packages are labeled, identifying when the box was sealed. Should a library request it, we will quarantine the sealed box for 72 hours before shipping it to you (thanks to our processes, in many instances 72 hours will have passed between sealing and delivery anyway). 


What changes have been made to pub dates for summer and fall materials?

The publishing industry had to make adjustments during this crisis, the same as everyone else. While many spring titles were too close to publication to change, we did see many changes made to title release dates that were expected during the summer. Likewise, there were some titles expected in the fall that have been pushed back. Some, into the winter. Others, six months or a year. 


Any changes to release dates are provided via automatic updates from the publishers, and are therefore reflected in the database the next day. We recommend running and outstanding order report on materials ordered before and during the lock down, and seeing if anything has had a change of release date that would affect your budget. We are confident that anything listed in our Fall Notables catalogues, released last week, will not see further delays.  


What is the status of the DVD market, and other AV materials?

Obviously, movie theatres have been closed since March, and no major movies have been released since then. As such, expected bestseller titles, such as Mulan, Black Widow, and the new Fast and the Furious will not be available until after their theatrical release. We have no idea of when that will be; it is well beyond our control. However, direct-to-video films (which many films expected to have theatrical releases became over the last three months), documentaries, TV series, and children’s titles all appear to be releasing as per usual, with only the odd title being pushed back. 


In Music, plenty of smaller, independent titles are available in all genres, but most of the larger, well-known artists are delaying their releases until the fall. These would be most of the bestseller titles. 


Video games remain available, and have increased in demand while everyone was stuck at home. Some spring and summer titles were delayed to July/August/September, but many titles are still available. Because the best seller season for video games is November and December, right now we anticipate no delays more than is usual in the video game industry. 


Very excitingly, in the past two weeks Sony has announced that the PS5 is coming to market this winter, and will be using physical media (at first, at least). Not only that, but it will be backward compatible with PS4 games! This should come as a relief to libraries who were worried about their existing catalogue of titles, and many who were concerned about video games going entirely digital. It also means you can continue buying PS4 games for your collections without the fear of them being obsolete in a year. 


What about a second wave?

Everything mentioned above is contingent on a world which continues to improve. Existing release dates for fall and winter rely on no further delays or obstacles. Obviously, all of that is beyond LSC's control. We can merely react to what ever happens next. There is much concern over a second wave, and restrictions being put back in place. Should that happen, LSC will follow the guidelines of the Ministry of Health, the Ontario Government, and the Region of Waterloo Public Health, as we did the first time.


We will make every effort to communicate in a clear and timely fashion what our response will be, and our marketing staff would be reaching out to you individually. As we have seen throughout the spring, things can happen quickly, and changes need to be made on the drop of a dime. But the first time, it was unexpected and no one was prepared. That will not be the case again.


To keep up to date with all of LSC’s latest offerings, please follow LSC on Facebook, on Instagram, on Twitter, our YouTube Channel,  and now on Issuu. We also encourage you to subscribe to the weekly Green Memo, and we hope you check back each and every week on this site for our latest musings on the publishing world.

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Please continue reading for important information regarding LSC's reopening.

Shipments will resume the week of June 22nd.
LSC’s management team are working hard to make the changes to the LSC workplace that will allow us to re-open with our employee’s and customer’s safety top of our priorities. Because LSC is more like a very large technical services department than simply a warehouse, the changes are somewhat complex.

In the week of June 22nd, shipments will be of material that was in house at LSC when we closed in March. However, we will quickly begin providing material published since then. Our processes prioritise bestsellers and other popular items. These will arrive – in quantity – starting the week of June 29th.

  • We will ONLY send material when you have confirmed that your receiving is open.

Changes to shipments

All LSC shipments will be labelled to show the date that the box or bin was packed at LSC.


Selection Services
Our selection department is already back at work. Fall bestseller catalogues are in development and will be released ahead of schedule in June. Other fall selection resources are also in development and will be ready for ordering into the summer. Many new fall titles are already in the LSC database and can be ordered.

If your library has made changes to your budget or ARP profile, please let the LSC selection team know.

LSC selection staff are also available to assist with recommendations in any area that your staff might have fallen behind in.

Reducing touch points
The best way to get material to patrons safely AND quickly, is to reduce the touch points when it first arrives at the library. To this end, LSC is happy to do any finishing steps that the library would normally do before items are shelf ready. Just ask.

Stay safe
Michael Monahan, CEO

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LSC wants to thank everyone for the kind thoughts and emails we have received during this crisis. We hope that everyone is and remains safe, and extend our best to each and every library across Canada. We’re here to help in whichever ways we can. We’re all in this together.


We are aware that your needs and status are constantly shifting during this time. While LSC’s warehouse is closed to comply with the Ontario Government closure of non-essential work places, we have ensured staff are available to meet your needs remotely.


Please reach out to the following immediate contacts:


Fran Quinn, Customer Service Representative

Customer Service and general enquiries


Angela Stuebing, ARP Coordinator

ARP and Selection Services requests


Trish Hayes, VP of Marketing

Marketing, Cataloguing, general enquiries


Michael Clark, Sales and Marketing Representative

Sales and Marketing, general enquiries


Services available during warehouse closure:

  • is fully operational. Carts can be built, orders can be placed, on-order MARCs can be downloaded, and reports can be generated.

  • Publishers continue to send us new title information, which is reflected in the database. This includes any changes made to publication dates. Due to pre-pub and ARP ordering, most summer and many fall titles may have already been included in orders.

  • Titles not in the database can still be requested via the L1 function on the website to ensure titles not provided by our publishers will still be ordered.

  • ARPs continue to be maintained. If there are any changes your library needs to make to their profiles, please contact us, and we will make any adjustment necessary.

  • If there are any custom selection tools that your library wants, please let us know.  As before, LSC is focused on making things as easy for you as we can.


Special notes concerning some services:

  • Release dates have been postponed or delayed for AV materials. We will provide selection tools for these materials when physical release dates are confirmed.
  • If the physical closure of library branches has caused shifts in your physical materials budgets. LSC will make any changes a library wants to their orders. Please feel free to contact us and make adjustments to fit your changing needs.
  • LSC will be sending the second installment Fixed Price Processing Plan invoices on schedule from May 1st. However, we are extending the period for volume adjustments to August 1st, as we understand that actual unit volumes for 2020 may have been impacted. We will make any adjustments to final billing / credits as needed. Please let us know.


For the immediate future:

  • LSC will be reaching out to libraries individually to help us understand what your timelines and priorities are.
  • LSC will ensure that we communicate our own timelines to our clients as the situation develops.
  • LSC will work with libraries who have requests for how they want to structure their receiving of materials (ex. best sellers above all else; shipping delays after packaging for in-box quarantine; increased shipments; etc.)
  • Once we have a picture of what will be needed when libraries reopen, LSC will develop an internal plan to make it happen.
  • Reducing touch points on materials is likely to be a concern when libraries reopen.  Box-to-shelf for new material would be the straightest line to that end.  Any library that wants to add processing or cataloguing options to their profile to achieve that is encouraged to let LSC know. 

We’ll speak to you soon.

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The government of Ontario has announced that all non-essential business in Ontario is to cease. While what we do at LSC is important – it is not essential by the government's definition. Therefore, LSC will cease plant operations as of Tuesday, March 24. This closure will be for a minimum of 2 weeks. Orders can still be placed via the website. We will provide updates as they happen.


For more information on the governement closure, please see the following links:


The ordering catalogue will remain operational during this period. Carts can still be built and orders placed. However, orders will not be processed at LSC until we reopen. 


Everyone at LSC looks forward to working with our wonderful clients when we are able to return to work.  Stay safe and healthy.

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LSC understands and sympathizes with the difficult decisions made by libraries across Canada during this ever evolving and uncertain time. We are keeping up-to-date on the situation as it develops. We are taking steps to ensure the continued health and safety of our clients and our staff. In the meantime, LSC will endeavor to continue to provide the same level of service to which you are accustomed. LSC is continuing to process shipments and do cataloguing and processing.  Our plan is that when libraries are able to accept deliveries, we will be able to provide material with as little disruption as possible. As this situation changes further, we will be in communication with you.


If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out. 

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LSC is proud to announce our Comic Book Subscription Service!


Graphic Novels have long been a part of library collections, and have seen increased popularity as interest rises across all age ranges. Libraries have even started putting on their own mini comic cons. However, for those unfamiliar with the material, it can be an intimidating collection to maintain.


With so many titles, with on-going and limited series runs, and content appropriateness a factor, it can be hard. LSC prides itself on the value and scope of its Graphic Novel service, it becoming one of our most requested ARPs. We are happy to extend the same diligence and selection to individual Comic Book issues as well.


These issues mostly run 24 to 30 pages printed on magazine stock. Many libraries use these issues to add to their juvenile serials collection, though as with Graphic Novels titles are available across all age ranges. This service can also service as a testing ground for titles whose Graphic Novel bound editions could be added to a regular collection later on.


LSC is offering this service without cataloguing and processing. Should a demand for a cataloguing record emerge, we will happily develop a format that works for the library on request, likely a serial monograph for these titles. LSC will not be providing processing on these items for the time being, as like magazines they are more fragile, and we feel it is best to extend the shelf of the product to simply ship them untouched. 


There are hundreds of comics titles published every month, from a variety of publishers and on a variety of frequencies. Our Graphic Novel Selector will work with libraries to cull this intimidating list down to titles relevant and valuable to each library. If you aren’t sure where to start with your comic book collection, we will offer suggestions based on popularity in other public libraries. Do you already have a popular Graphic Novel collection? We can look together there for inspiration, as to what might be popular for a monthly title.


As part of this service, LSC will provide:   

  • Suggested series lists based on popularity amongst public libraries, for collection age groups.
  • Series updates provided, along with suggestions for replacements when titles end their runs.
  • Tracking of series done by the selector.  ex. 14 different Batman variations published in the month of August. 
  • Publication schedules tracked by LSC (bi-weekly, monthly, quarterly).
  • Monthly shipments to libraries.
  • Bulk ordering discount!

Trade discounts will be applied to most titles, and consistent monthly shipments will keep your comic books readers entertained with the newest chapters of stories. With LSC's service, there is no long term commitment to any title. If Scooby-Doo isn't working for you after a couple months, cancel the title and try something else, such as Ninja Turtles. There is also a limited ability to get backissues of titles, so if you'd like to start your collection with several of the most recent issues, we will try our best to accommodate . Availablity of backissues will vary based on title and publishers. 


For more information, or to start your own Comic Book subscription, please contact our Graphic Novel selector Angela Stuebing, at

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January 19th, 2020 is the inaugural I Read Canadian day, a day (and week) dedicated to encouraging young people to celebrate the richness, diversity, and breadth of Canadian literature.  The aim is to have Canadians, especially young people, take just 15 minutes out of their day to read a Canadian book, or have it read to them. 


Many libraries and schools are participating, including Ajax Public Library, Guelph Public Library, and Lethbridge Public Library. Here at LSC, we asked staff to let us know their favourite Canadian authors and/or books.  See below for their choices!


CEO Michael M. notes that one of his daughter’s favourite books was The Paper Bag Princess by the one and only Robert Munsch, illustrated by Michael Martchenko.  Originally published in 1980 by Annick Press, the book has withstood the test of time, Mike feels. Robert Munsch was a theme among our staff, also mentioned by CFO Kirk O., Multilingual Selector Julie K., and Nonfiction Selector Stef W. This year is the 40th anniversary of this classic book.


Stef’s personal favourite Canadian authors are Tanya Huff, Guy Gavriel Kay, and Gemma Files.  All three authors have written urban fantasy set in and around Canada: Tanya Huff’s Smoke trilogy and Enchantment Emporium trilogy; Guy Gavriel Kay’s Fionavar Tapestry; Gemma Files’s We Will All Go Down Together; and short fiction The Puppet Motel from the collection Echoes, edited by Ellen Datlow. 


In juvenile nonfiction, Stef recommends the Scholastic Canada Biography series, Indigenous author Theresa Corky Larsen-Jonasson, the Mothers of Xsan series, Eric Zweig, Elise Gravel, Jess Keating, the Haunted Canada series, and Helaine Becker.  In adult nonfiction, be sure to check out Metis author Jesse Thistle’s autobiography From the Ashes; The Skin We’re In: a Year of Black Resistance and Power by Desmond Cole; and The Vagina Bible by Jen Gunter.


Kirk O. cites Patrick DeWitt as one of his favourites; he’s loaned and recommends The Sisters Brothers to friends and family as a great read.  He also loved Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel.


Acquisitions Clerk Fabiana S. recently read Sweep: the Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier and enjoyed it so much that she plans to read the rest of his bibliography.  She also recommends the Lullaby series, which includes Canada Lullaby, British Columbia Lullaby, and Alberta Lullaby.  They’re even available to listen to on Youtube.


Rachel S., Adult Fiction Selector, has always had a special place in her reading heart for Gordon Korman.  Not only did she attend the same elementary school he did, but she’s met him professionally (he’s always charming and funny) and his book Don’t Care High was loosely based on the high school she attended.  She also recommends quintessential summer camp book I Want To Go Home, as well as No More Dead Dogs.


Outside of Gordon Korman, Rachel makes a point of reading Courtney Summers’s YA fiction, and books like Very Rich by Polly Horvath.  She notes that Dennis Lee wrote a picture book – Lizzy’s Lion – in 1984 that’s one of the most twisted and brilliant picture books she’s ever read, and some of her favourite adult fiction authors are Timothy Findlay, Michael Ondaatje, and Robert Sawyer.


Finally, Library Service Representative Michael C. has two recommendations to make.  First up is John Bianchi, who was actually born in New York but came to Canada in 1968 and made his career here.  Snowed in at Pokeweed School was a childhood favourite of Michael’s, and he’s always found Bianchi’s drawing style a delight.  His second recommendation is Canadian writer – and computer programmer – Ryan North.  North created Dinosaur comics, has written a Choose Your Own Adventure style version of Hamlet, and recently published How to Invent Everything: A Survival Guide for the Stranded Time Traveller.


These are just some of the great Canadians creating great literature.  For more information on I Read Canadian Day, check out their website, which offers awesome reading lists, including the Forest of Reading Awards and the CCBC Book Awards.

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Rachel Seigel
September 21, 2020
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Selection Services
September 14, 2020
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LSC Library Services Centre
September 7, 2020
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Stef Waring
August 24, 2020
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Michael Clark
August 17, 2020
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Jamie Quinn
July 27, 2020
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Sara Pooley
July 20, 2020
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Karrie Vinters
February 10, 2020
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Angela Stuebing
December 16, 2019
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Dale Campbell
June 24, 2019
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