How to Find a Novel or Short Story

Using the library catalog m

1. By author: Look up the name of the author and note the call number of the particular novel. (Novels are arranged on the shelf alphabetically by the author's last name)
2. By title: Look up the title of the novel and note the call number.
3. By subject: Look up the following subject headings.

Adventure fiction
American fiction
Bible fiction
Biographical fiction
Black humor (Literature)
Chidren's stories
Christian fiction
Diary fiction
English fiction
Epistolary fiction
Erotic fiction
Fairy tales
Fantasy fiction
French fiction
German fiction
Historical fiction
Horror fiction
Humorous fiction
Interplanetary voyages
Legal stories
Love stories
Medical novels
Movie novels
Mystery fiction
Occult fiction
Pastoral fiction
Picaresque literature
Plot-your-own stories
Radio and television novels
Religious fiction
Romans à clef
Russian fiction
School stories
Science fiction
Sea stories
Short stories
Social issues books
Spanish fiction
War stories
Western stories

Look, as well, for subject headings with subdivision Fiction, e.g. African Americans--Fiction; Abraham Lincoln, 1809-1865--Fiction; United States--History--1861-1865, Civil War--Fiction; Teenagers--Suicidal behavior--Fiction; etc.
    Fiction books are found on the low shelves in the middle of the main room of the library. They are arranged on the shelves alphabetically by the author's last name, e.g., The Habit of Loving by Doris Lessing (FIC Lessing HAB) follows The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway (FIC Hemingway SUN) on the shelf.

Finding Short Stories
    Short stories are a special kind of fiction. They are mainly published in collections or anthologies. Short stories collections are found in the fiction collection if they are by a single author, e.g., a collection of short stories by Doris Lessing or Ernest Hemingway. Some of these collections are marked with a sticker which says "Short Stories." Short stories in anthologies by more than one author are found in the story collection. Books in this collection have call numbers starting with SC. Physically, this collection is at the end of all the fiction books.
    The library staff is gradually adding analytical entries to its short story anthologies so that you can look up the stories by title and/or author. If you cannot find a stort story title by using the catalog you may find the Short Story Index another resource for finding short fiction.
    Short Story Index (SC 808.83 SHO) is the most extensive short fiction index. The library has volumes which cover through 1900-1993 which are kept in the story collection area. The SSI is a subject, author, and title index to short fiction published in collections or magazines. The library does not have every collection or magazine indexed in these volumes but looking here allows you to begin to find out where you might find a particular short story.
    A typical author entry might look like this:
Entry from a collection Entry from a periodical
    Adams, Alice, 1926-
        Molly's dog
            The Literary dog; ed. by J. Shinto
    Dixon, Stephen, 1936-
           The Yale Review v81 p66-71 Ja '93
The above example shows that the story by Alice Adams, "Molly's Dog," appears in the collection The Literary dog, which is edited by J. Shinto. For fuller information about the book consult the List of Collections Indexed. The above entry indicates that the story by Stephen Dixon, "Lost," appears in the The Yale Review, volume 81, pages 66-71 in the January 1993 issue. For fuller information about the periodical consult the Directory of Periodicals.
From Short Story Index, 1989-1993. Ed. by John Greenfieldt and Juliette Yaakov. H.W. Wilson, 1994

Other entries, e.g., title and subject will direct you to the author entry to find out what collection or periodical has the particular story.

If our library does not have the collection or magazine, check the MARINet catalog -

Return to the Redwood Cybrary Book Lists Page
Created by the Redwood Cybrary Webspinner: June 7, 2000. Updated October 22, 2002.

Tom kaun, Library Media Teacher -- The Bessie Chin Library @ Redwood High School, 395 Doherty Drive, Larkspur, CA 94939 -- 415.945.3662