313. Tracking Changes: An Interview with Bowling Green Browne Pop Culture Library Archivist Steve Ammidown

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In this episode, I’m chatting with Steve Ammidown, who is the Manuscripts and Outreach Archivist at the Browne Popular Culture Library at Bowling Green. We talk about what Steve’s job means, what he does, and what the Browne Popular Culture Library has within its collection. Board games, liquor decanters, promotional items, pogs, pins, cookbooks, marketing ephemera, books, and many, many other cool things live in the Pop Culture Library. We discuss some of the most interesting parts of the collection (Fanzines? Yup) and the parts he’s developing currently. March 2019 is the 50th anniversary of the library, so they’re also looking at what more they can do in the future, including focusing on their romance collection, which is hella substantial. (That’s an official library term, btw.) We also discuss the challenges of being an archivist in a digital age, and how the idea of a manuscript collection is changing with all the changes in the way in which we write. We also talk about the library’s RWA collection, their category romance collection, their manuscript and papers archive from about 45 different romance writers, and, obviously, their romance genre collection as well. Plus, Steve tells us about romances he’s reading, and his impressions of the genre as someone who discovered it as an adult. In one of the library’s recent tweets, Steve quoted Elizabeth Designer, who said, “It is a feminist act to preserve stuff that women have done and written.” I entirely agree, and would love to visit this library someday. So let’s take a road trip, shall we?

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