Your eBook Holds: Behind the Scenes at WEPL

book cover of The Cold Millions

We’re All Adults Here

Book Recommendations & Other Musings

by Carol Tuttle

Carol Tuttle, Collection Services Librarian

Have you placed a hold on a library eBook and then been dismayed to see the estimated time when it will be ready as “several weeks”? And then been surprised when the book drops into your account sooner than expected? Don’t despair, go ahead and place those holds! Just like with our print book collection, we are keeping an eye on your holds and buying additional digital copies to meet your requests when possible in hoopla and Libby/OverDrive. It may seem like there is a mystery to digital holds, but I will try to explain and make you realize how important it is to PLACE YOUR HOLDS!

When you look at items in your hold list in the Libby app, there is an estimate of how long until your hold will be filled.  If you tap on the estimate, a box pops up with different numbers displayed:

pop-up hold window in Libby


Your place in line: this is based on ALL CLEVNET patron holds for the title. What is doesn’t tell you is how many WEPL holds on WEPL copies, which are prioritized for our patrons. If we own an Advantage copy of the title, your place in the line for WEPL copies is much better than this leads you to believe!

Copies in use: this counts ALL CLEVNET copies, including our specific WEPL copies as well as shared copies available from other libraries

People waiting in total: this counts ALL CLEVNET patron holds.

People waiting per copy: this is the “holds ratio” for ALL CLEVNET patrons on ALL CLEVNET COPIES. Since WEPL’s goal is to keep the ratio at no more than 4 WEPL patrons waiting per copy, we buy extra Advantage copies which are prioritized for our patrons.



Hoopla is another collection of eBooks and eAudiobooks for WEPL patrons. While many of the titles are available to download instantly, we have started adding some Flex titles that are “one user at a time” and you can place your holds on these. Unlike Libby (OverDrive), the hoopla collection is JUST FOR WEPL patrons (not shared with other CLEVNET users).

Once you place a hold on a hoopla title, check the My hoopla icon on the toolbar of the hoopla app and choose the Holds tab to see where you are in the holds queue. Since only WEPL cardholders can use our hoopla collection, the holds position you see in hoopla is your actual place in line for this title. Remember, we are monitoring the number of holds and will buy extra digital copies to keep you from waiting too long for your chance to read/listen.

At the Willoughby-Eastlake Library, we strive to provide books and eBooks to meet your holds on our print and digital collections. See something you like but it’s not available? PLACE A HOLD! If you don’t place a hold, we don’t know you want it. Like the squeaky wheel that gets the grease, your holds get our attention.

Carol Tuttle is the Collections & Digital Services Manager for the Willoughby-Eastlake Library System. She  is currently reading The Cold Millions by Jess Walter for the Lake County Reads! one book/one community program.

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