Book Collection - And the 2015 Winners Are!

Congratulations to Jessalyn Kreutzer, Krista Silva, and Alicia Matz, winners of the 2015 Book Collecting Contest!

Best Essay:
Jessalyn Kreutzer
Collection: "Liberation in Literature: Lesbian Ecofeminism"

The award for best essay goes to Jessalyn Kreutzer for her essay, “Liberation in Literature: Lesbian Ecofeminism”  Jessalyn’s essay and collection truly reflect her journey to discover herself and her place in society.  She purposefully centered her essay around her definition of selfhood, while cohesively weaving her plurality of interests around that theme and welcoming and encouraging others to have the courage to take a similar journey.  Congratulations to Jessalyn.

  • What prompted you to apply?
    I applied because I wanted to share my collection, and the power that the written work has had in my life and formation of my identity.
  • What inspired your collection?
    My collection has grown because I am drawn to books I can see myself in. I have always loved to read, so I have naturally gravitated toward research when considering my identity.
  • Do you have a favorite place to look for books?
    Garage sales, thrift stores, and used book dealers can have real treasures that strongly enhance a collection.  I also get many books as gifts.
  • Any advice you would give to future collectors?
    Collect what you love, want, and need.
  • What is your favorite item in your collection?
    We'moon 2015: Gaia Rhythms for Womyn is my current favorite.  It is a day book with amazing artwork and poetry to inspire my daily life.

 

1st place/Single Collector Award:
Krista Silva
Collection:
The Wonderful World of Whedon: A Collection of Texts Celebrating Joss Whedon and His Works"

The first place award, or single collector award, acknowledges an excellent, integrated and comprehensive essay, a well annotated bibliography, images, and wish list. This year the first place award goes to Krista Silva for her collection, “The Wonderful World of Whedon: A Collection of Texts Celebrating Joss Whedon and His Works.”  Krista demonstrated a holistic, broad minded and informed approach to her collection, specifying as she did so the importance of a collection as a symbol of personal meaning.  She showed how a collection is more than a group of objects, it is rather a gathering of portals of experience.  Additionally, her essay exuded the depth and breadth of the Whedon universe in a variety of ways which showcased an imaginative, thorough approach to her collection.  Congratulations to Krista.

  • What prompted you to apply?
    I've been following the Book Collecting Contest since the first semester I transferred to Puget Sound. It's very fascinating to me to see what other students are interested in outside of the classroom, especially when it comes to books. I've always wanted to submit my own collection, but I never really thought I had one. I guess I was wrong!
  • What inspired your collection?
    During this entire project I have had one thing on my mind: my dear friend Jana. She passed away last winter, and we had always, from the moment we first met, been connected by our love for Joss Whedon. I still remember when we would watch episodes of Buffy ​as they aired and swap commentary over the phone. I don't know if we ever had a conversation that didn't involve a quote from or mention of the Whedonverse. Working on this collection, defining it, arguing for it, living it, has been very cathartic for me. Each moment that I spent working on this project has been like having another conversation with her, and I feel so grateful to have had that experience, and that I was able to share this passion once more.
  • Do you have a favorite place to look for books?
    I just love visiting all book stores. Each one presents its own unique adventure. I guess, though, that I miss two book stores from my hometown: Blue Cypress Books and More Fun Comics. Blue Cypress is just a small local shop with shelves crammed full of used books that have that really great old book smell. Also, the sweetest little calico cat lives there. More Fun Comics is the place where my Whedon collection began, and it's also where I stumbled upon my autographed Joss Whedon poster.
  • Any advice you would give to future collectors?
    You probably have a collection sitting on your shelves and you don't even know it! Also, don't be afraid to love whatever it is you love and to share that with other people. They might not get it, or even like it, but when you're really passionate about something that's always a beautiful thing. So whether you enjoy geeking out over 17th century British Literature, old Nancy Drew novels, or you have a collection of comic books, don't be afraid to share it.
  • What is your favorite item in your collection?
    It's always hard to pick just one, but if we're talking about my favorite cover: Buffy, Season 9, Issue 23, "The Core, Part Three". Otherwise, I guess I'd have to pick Joss Whedon: The Complete Companion​ . I'm in so deep with that book right now, and it's definitely quite a pleasure to have two of my favorite worlds collide: Academia and the Whedonverse.

 

Collins Choice Award:  
Alicia Matz
Collection: “Epic, Myth, and Modern Magic: Where Classics and Fantasy Collide
 

The Collins Choice Award recognizes a student whose collection illustrates the hallmarks of a liberal arts education.  This year, for our inaugural award, the Collins Choice Award goes to Alicia Matz, for her collection, “Epic, Myth, and Modern Magic: Where Classics and Fantasy Collide.”  Alicia's collection immediately stood out as a truly interdisciplinary demonstration of learning. Her collection reveals a broad integration of different disciplines woven together to form a whole.  Grounded in her understanding of classics, her collection ventured into new territory, asserting connections and gathering meaning, all with a deep appreciation for her books as portals to knowledge. Ultimately, an exceptional collection and a rich topic for further study.  Congratulations Alicia.

  • What prompted you to apply?
    I have always loved books and wanted to show off my collection. But all of my friends have gotten sick of hearing about them so I decided to share my collection with the world.
  • What inspired your collection?
    Two of my favorite book categories are fantasy and books about the classics. Ever since freshman year I have wanted to put together a book collection and submit it, but could never come up with one that really spoke to me. Year after year I started applications with collections of just fantasy and just classics. But this year, I decided to combine them and thus my collection was born.
  • Do you have a favorite place to look for books?
    I really enjoy used book stores. There is a very large used book store near my house in Colorado that has a monthly "all used books $3" sale that I go to whenever I'm home.
  • Any advice you would give to future collectors?
    Don't worry if you think your collection only makes sense to you. Most of my friends thought I was crazy when I told them I was going to submit a collection on Classics and Fantasy because they didn't think there was much overlap. But if you think there is something there, go for it! Your collection should be uniquely you.
  • What is your favorite item in your collection?  (don’t worry if you can’t answer this!)
    Either my copy of the Aeneid or the Harry Potter books because they all have had an important role in shaping who I am today.

The aim of the competition was to encourage full-time students at University of Puget Sound to read for enjoyment and to develop personal libraries throughout their lives, to appreciate the special qualities of printed or illustrated works, and to read, research, and preserve the collected works for pleasure and scholarship.”

The award was sponsored by the Book Club of Washington, a nonprofit organization of book lovers and collectors who has a special interest in collecting and preserving printed materials.  It is a goal of the club to support a new generation of collectors with awards and recognition of their collecting accomplishments.  The club held its annual awards reception on April 18th, where the University of Puget Sound and all 14 students were recognized for their achievement.

 

Congratulations to all the students who participated in the contest.  Plans are already underway for next year’s contest!

Cassandra Childs
Imagining New Worlds: A Fantasy Collection

Zeb Howell
Far Far Away and Further: The Star Wars Expanded Universe

Jessalyn Kreutzer
Liberation in Literature: Lesbian Ecofeminism

Alicia Matz
Epics, Myth and Modern Magic: Where Classics and Fantasy Collide

Louisa Raitt
Tacoma, Havana, Iberia, and Beyond: A Personal Art [History & Critique] Collection

Krista Silva
The Wonderful World of Whedon: A Collection of Texts Celebrating Joss Whedon and His Works