The K/S Library

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Name: The K/S Library
Date(s): 1997-present
Profit/Nonprofit: non
Country based in: US (1997-present) and UK (1998-2013), Austria (2014-)
Focus: Star Trek (mainly K/S) zine and book library
External Links: Complete catalogue of the K/S Library's European branch
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The K/S Library maintains an extensive collection of zines and other K/S and K&S books. There are two branches, one in the US and one in Europe. The European Branch was relocated from the UK to Austria in 2014. The materials are available to subscribers of letterzine The K/S Press. The letterzine contains monthly updates to the collection.

Its 1997 Birth

It was started in June 1997. From issue #10 of The K/S Press:
How can fans with limited funds discover the great pleasure that’s to be found in reading some of the classic, out-of-print zines that are so hard to find? For a long time I have pondered establishing a K/S Revolving Library, and now looks like the right time. I searched through my own collection and came up with several duplicate, out-of-print zines. Another friend graciously added several more, so we’re starting with a basic selection of eleven zines. These zines... are available for borrowing by any subscriber to The K/S Press. Just write and ask, and if they’re in the stacks, they are yours to enjoy for a period of one month. Jenna will pay postage initially, and ask that you reimburse her when you send the zine(s) back to her. Until we build up the collection, please limit yourself to just three zines at a time.... This whole procedure requires trust. You trust me to be a good, reliable librarian, the entire K/S community trusts the borrowers not to keep the zines and to return them on time in good condition, and I trust the borrowers to pay me back for postage! But I know this can be done.

A 2015 Description

In this time and age of internet glory, with such awesome projects like the Archive of Our Own or the Kirk/Spock Fanfiction Archive ensuring easy access to our beloved addictions, there are more and more young fen who have never had a print zine in their hands. On the other hand, despite all the wonderful new creations people upload to those sites daily, and the awesome efforts of dedicated fen to archive elder fanworks and thus make them available online, there are still thousands of stories, ficlets, poems, illustrations, meta articles etc. which you can only access in their original form: the print zine. And many of them will never see the light of internet, due to questions of privacy and copyright. Let's not forget that there are many authors and artists we can't ask anymore... Fanzine Lending Libraries work by snail mail. They are thus the fannish equivalent to handwritten postcards, typewriters, vinyl records, vintage fashion, and craft-beer. Very hipster, very retro, if you will. As offline and analogue as it gets. [1]

Some Rules

The rules as per a 2000 issue of the The K/S Press:

  • Anybody who’s a subscriber can borrow from either branch. You can borrow three zines at a time, and keep them for three weeks, not counting mailing time.
  • Write to one of the librarians and tell her which zines you want to borrow. If you don’t know, tell her what kind of K/S you like, and she’ll be happy to pick something out for you. Give her your name and address.
  • Wait in joyous anticipation (see above) until the wondrous day the zines arrive in the mail. Forget about going to work, forget about sleep, ignore the whines of children, spouses, pets, and assorted significant others who wish your attention/help/food. You are in K/S land!
  • Sadly, after three weeks, mail the zines back to the librarian, but keep their memory in your heart. Include in the envelope a check or money order or cash to pay the librarian back for the postage she spent to mail the zines to you. You might be kind and give her a little extra to also pay for envelopes and tape.
  • Start the process over again until you’ve read everything in the library!

The Chris Soto Memorial Fund

In 1998, a special section of this library was created: "Chris Soto was an extraordinarily gifted writer and artist who generously shared her love of Kirk and Spock with us for many years. Her death at forty-five last year was a great loss not only to those who knew and loved her but to all of Star Trek and K/S fandom. In her name we are starting a new section of the library. I am offering some professional fiction and non-fiction books from my own collection for borrowing. The same rules apply as for the regular library with the exception that we are asking for an additional $3.00 donation for each shipment... I will collect and keep track of the money and by next year we hope to have enough to bring a needy fan to Shore Leave in Chris's name. The selection process is still to be decided. Suggestions anyone? Hopefully we will expand this section in the future to include videos, audio tapes, etc. I think Chris would be pleased." [2]

References

  1. post by the librarian at kirkspock.livejournal, August 25, 2015
  2. from The K/S Press #24