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The Story Center Collection

The Story Center Collection is a special collection of Mid-Continent Public Library that supports the mission of The Story Center to help people create stories, share those stories, and connect with the stories of others. Similar to books in the Library's general collection, the 2000 items in this special collection circulate, except periodicals. The Story Center Collection comprises five complementary sections.

Browse the Story Center Collection

Primary Collection

Established with funding from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the primary collection features books intended to inspire and guide storytellers working in all mediums—poets, fiction and non-fiction writers, and oral and digital storytellers. Books about the storytelling craft complement collections of folktales, reflections on writing, and books about the publishing business. New books are added to the primary collection regularly.


The Story Center Collection subscribes to 36 periodicals including a selection of literary journals from across the country, and magazines about the craft and business of writing and storytelling. Periodicals are updated annually.


The ReadLOCAL collection celebrates the literary achievements of writers who currently live within the Library’s service area. It encompasses a range of styles, genres, and publishing methods—self-published, hybrid published, small press, and large or traditional publisher, for example. All books have been published within the past few years, and new books are added regularly.

Thusnelda Schmidt Storytelling Collection

Named in honor of the first State Coordinator of Children's Services and originally housed at the Missouri State Library, the Schmidt collection contains a number of how-to books as well as books of stories to tell, many of them out-of-print. Browse the Schmidt Collection.

Missouri Authors Collection

When renovation of the historic Woodneath house is completed in 2019, this selection of books by noteworthy Show-Me State authors such as Mark Twain will be housed in the Crouch Family Reading Room. Many of the titles are out of print.

The Library is committed to growing The Story Center Collection and encouraging its use. Unfortunately, the Library is not able to accept donations to the collection at this time. Suggestions for titles MCPL should consider adding are always welcome. For more information, please contact The Story Center at (816)883-4774 or

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