Inner West Council

Buying Plan

The Library has very popular lending and reference collections for children and adults. To ensure that our collections remain relevant, buying guidelines are prepared annually by the staff responsible for collection development in those areas. The focus for development of our various collections is outlined below.


The aim for our Fiction collection is to have a current, balanced collection of popular, literary and classic titles across a range of genres. To respond to demands for emerging authors and to what patrons are requesting.

  • All of the Top Ten titles from The Sydney Morning Herald
  • All of the fiction titles reviewed in The Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian (weekend editions)
  • Titles highlighted in Good Reading Magazine  

Genres include:

  • Mystery / Suspense / Thriller
  • Romance
  • Westerns
  • Literary fiction
  • Translated titles
  • Historical
  • Science fiction
  • Fantasy
  • Australian fiction
  • Classics

Ttitles which are heavily reserved and have mass appeal will be bought in duplicate.

All of the winners of the major literary awards, such as Man Booker, Miles Franklin, Pulitzer, Orange etc. will be bought. All of the short listed titles will be bought.

Titles for the fiction collection will be bought frequently in response to what bookshops are stocking. A browse of the new titles in the library collection will reflect the new titles in a bookshop, according to budget restrictions.

Large Print

The aim is to have a large print collection which, as much as possible, contains titles and genres equivalent to the fiction collection (availability of titles published in large print format should be taken into consideration).

Apart from genres, the physical aspect of the stock is important, so the standing order plans will reflect a large percentage of soft cover titles.

Genres include:

  • Literary titles
  • Romance
  • Western
  • Mystery
  • Historical
  • Australian titles

Adult Non fiction

Collection development of the Adult non Fiction Collection will reflect in-demand subject areas based on the following criteria:

  • Best sellers
  • Books in the news and reviewed in the press
  • Books from television programmes
  • Biographies
  • Popular culture, the arts and science
  • Political issues and current affairs
  • Local and international travel
  • Sport and recreation
  • HSC materials
  • Adult graphic novel collection.

The Non Fiction collections will be undergoing a metamorphosis to bring like materials closer together with the development of book shop style reading areas. The first established is the new Parenting Collection in our Children's area at Ashfield Library. The Children's and Adult Non Fiction collections will also be merged to form one collection, the call numbers will retain a distinguishing feature, to assist with appropriate selection of books for children.

Children's and Youth

Collections for children and teenagers will continue to focus on increasing the appeal to the target audience, by focussing more on recreational titles and incorporating more youth feedback and involvement into the acquisitions process.

The children's and youth graphic novel collections continue to boom, the library is focusing on acqusition on more suitable materials in graphic formats for the younger children's collections. 

Ttitles which are heavily reserved and have mass appeal will be bought in duplicate.

All of the CBC Children's Book Council Book of the Year Shortlist titles, CROC Shortlisted titles, INKY Shortlisted titles and the KOALA Kids Own Australian Literature Awards Shortlisted titles will be bought. 

All of the in print newly listed Premier's Reading Challenge titles will be bought.

Community languages

This year we will be buying many more titles for our very popular Chinese collections. This collection will be supplemented by daily newspapers and an increased collection of Chinese language Dvds.

Popular fiction and non fiction titles will also be purchased in Italian and Korean . Purchase of materials in languages of newly emerging population groups in the Ashfield area will also be investigated.

The library's collection of learning languages material will be strengthened to reflect all major language groups represented in the Ashfield local Government area.

Reference Collections

Print reference collections for Children and Adults will continue to reflect current information resources with updates of major resources such as yearbooks, almanacs and guides.

The Library now has a focus more on providing online reference resources. Continued development of a collection of databases reflecting a wide range of interests and needs. Each new database will be accompanied by programs to skill Library customers in their usage.


The Library's DVD collection will expand to include popular subject material, documentaries , television series , world movies and films based on books, and popular movies for children and adults. Dvds with other language options including in particular Mandarin and Italian, will also be purchased.

The library's collection of CDs will be increased to include titles in a range of rock, pop, folk, jazz, classical , relaxation (ambient music) and world music.