I wrote yesterday about how to make a very simple accordion book for your newspaper poetry. But that was the easy part. The hard part -- pasting the clippings into the book -- shouldn't be that hard; didn't you learn pasting in kindergarten? And it's a whole lot easier nowadays than it was when I was in kindergarten, thanks to the invention of glue sticks.
But there's a difference between kindergarten pasting and artisanal pasting. I wish I was better at the artisanal kind; some of my artist friends who specialize in books seem to have way better pasting skills and equipment than I do. But I do not claim to be making books for the ages, so all I want to accomplish is to get the pieces stuck on straight and not have them fall off tomorrow.
First tip: there are glue sticks and there are glue sticks. I want one that will go on smooth and white, not grainy and tacky and purple. Some glue sticks are too elastic -- no sooner have you smeared them on but they pull together and recede from the edges. Some are too dry -- you have to really scrub at the paper to get the glue to stick. Don't buy those.
I haven't tried every glue stick on the market, so you may well have one that you love and I don't know about. My go-to is the Staples house brand. I have also used and liked Elmer's All-Purpose. Whatever brand you choose, make sure you get the white, not the purple; I think they're much creamier.
Second tip: little bits of newspaper are difficult to handle with your fingers. I couldn't do collage or newspaper poetry without my tweezers, which make it easy to pick up and place the bits. I have also seen people do this with the tip of an X-acto knife, but I do better with the security of a two-point grip.
Yes, you're wasting 75% of your glue, but it's the only way to get a secure bond. (That's why I buy my glue sticks in the 18-pack.) If by chance you get too much glue on your clipping, and it oozes out onto the paper, clean it away with a toothpick or the tip of your tweezers. Better to lift the excess glue, if you can, than to wipe or smear it.
Final tip: don't try to be frugal with your work surface. If you accidentally place your clipping face down into an area with glue on it, you'll make a mess and perhaps ruin your work. I like to cut pieces of scrap newspaper about 3 x 4 inches, make a big pile, and take a new sheet with almost every paste.
That's my story, and I'm sticking to it. Like glue.