ALA Annual 2023

Graphic Novels for Mental Health #alaac23

The Graphic Novel and Comics Round Table kicked off #ALAAC23 on Friday with an informative and inspiring discussion forum on graphic medicine and mental health. Panelists included librarian Soline D. Holmes and authors Natalie Norris, Elizabeth Trembley, and Jarrett J. Krosoczka.

The authors reflected on the role of memory recall in the creation of memoirs, their creative processes, navigating humor when dealing with tough subjects, and the sense of relief and/or anxiety in telling their stories. 

As a Youth Services Manager, I was eager to learn how to bring these ideas back to my children and teens. Holmes discussed hosting a week long artist in residence at her school, which would be great for children and teen programs in the public library. I’ll certainly be reading her article in Children and Libraries. I’ve long been interested in a Teen Zine program and Trembley’s speciality is with Zines. On Saturday, I hope to catch Trembley’s Zine workshop at 11:00 am in the Zine Booth. I can also imagine using content from Krosoczka’s YouTube channel with our children’s book club.

Check out some of the panelists’ work:

Soline D. Holmes Article in Children and Libraries “The ‘Bane of the Bassinet’? Graphic Novels as Informational Texts” 

Natalie Norris Dear Mini: A Graphic Memoir, Book One (Teenage experience of sexual assault and PTSD. Told in the form of an illustrated letter to a friend. Available July 4, 2023)

Elizabeth Trembley Look Again (Experience finding a dead body while walking her dogs. Available now.)

Jarrett J. Krosoczka Hey Kiddo (Growing up with a drug addicted mother and a missing father. Available now.)

Sunshine (Follow up to Hey Kiddo.Summer spent as a counselor at a camp for seriously ill children. Available now.) 

Lunch Lady series 

What an informative session! I can’t wait to attend more.


Today’s guest contributor is Lacy Wolfe (she/her/hers). Lacy is currently the Youth Services Manager at the North Little Rock Public Library. She is so excited to return to an in-person ALA conference! Lacy has served on Council as a Chapter Councilor and has missed all the energy, ideas, and networking from attending conference. She has recently moved back to public libraries after 10 years as an Instruction Librarian at academic libraries so you’ll find her at ALSC and YALSA sessions with an iced coffee in hand! 


Please note that as a guest post, the views expressed here do not represent the official position of ALA or ALSC.

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