A Step in the Right Direction!

As I have been trying to grow my writing presence here, there hasn’t been much talk for a while about one of my other many hats – the library. Well, as of this week, I am now full-time employed in a library! Since getting my Library Science degree last year, I have been working part-time at the local university library, and they have bumped me to full-time.

I’m excited, as this is a step closer to being a full-time librarian. I had been doing some minor professional work as a reference librarian, working the desk for some of the extended hours (evenings, weekends) and some during the day at times as well. Now, doing reference work has been written into my job description! So more and more of good experience, and of the library showing trust and faith in me.

As to my writing, you may well be like “hey David, why didn’t you do more while you were part-time employed?” Well, a lot of that time was taken up by working other jobs – the reference work, and other part-time jobs. Breaking into a career is hard work, and as one interviewer put it, what I have been doing “shows a lot of sacrifice.” I think that going through this whole process has taught me and shown me a lot – and I hope that it shows me most of all that it’s going to be a lot of work and sacrifice to become a writer!

So the math is funny, as I’m not at the most money I’ve ever made, but I am at the highest hourly rate I’ve ever made. Moving upward, and no overtime, so I’ll take it as a plus. I’m happy, and more secure, and that’s all to the good. So thanks for listening to a moment of my personal life, and I hope your life has you in a good place as well!

E – e-Book

ESo part of the goal in the A to Z Challenge is to keep the posts short, so I’m not 100% sure why I decided to tackle e-books in a short format! What sorts of topics could I discuss on e-Books?

I think really, the point of this post, to keep it short, really just needs to be, aren’t e-Books neat? The ability to have a whole bunch of books, on a single device. Being able to carry a virtual library with you wherever you go. Great for travel, which is when I get a lot of my reading done. Which might be bad, since I don’t travel enough…

But are e-Books neat enough? The answer is probably, not yet. What do you do when you’re done with it? Keep it forever. Okay… that’s a long time. So no donating it to the local library, no loaning it to a friend, no giving it to someone as a gift. No downsizing your collection – since, after all, it’s portable, so who would want to ever reduce the size of the collection? (Librarian Sarcasm)

Okay, there’s elements of some of those things you can do. And, better yet, there is a growing capacity for checking out e-Books from libraries. However, there is by no means an industry standard to this yet, as some publishers want to charge a ton for electronic access – something that’s done with print journals in databases, as well – because more people can access the book then. Or, they’re limiting access to how many people can have the book at a time. Or they’re adding a limit to the number of times a book can be checked out before it must be bought again. So it isn’t perfect yet.

So while I like my convenient books, I like my free access to books too – maybe especially books I’m not sure about, or books I know I won’t be reading again.

Where are you at? Completely adopted e-Books? Waiting to see? Half and half? And have you checked your local library for e-books? Let me know in the comments below!

Reviewing the Reference Interview

Tonight I start my first evening at the reference desk, and I was brushing up on the Reference Interview and found an old assignment I had done on the subject. It looks like it had been my duty to read everyone’s write-ups and post a collection of our experiences. We had played at “secret shoppers” talking to librarians, seeking their help with a question of our own choosing.

It looks like I had a lot of data to go through! Lots of insights. I am going to share this write-up, figuring it’s helpful insight about one of the more important and constant aspects of any librarian job: reference. I am making a couple of edits, but for the most part, with a bit of intro here, I figure it’s pretty good. This is something originally written by me, and the data is mainly from students in my course with me. If I had kept up my blogging more while getting the degree, this might have ended up posted far sooner! I do have a couple of references, and I will leave those as-is.

It’s also kind of fun to read it and think that it’s definitely in my same “voice,” something that is solidifying more with more and more time spent writing on a constant basis! Read more of this post

New Year’s Malaise

The New Year is supposed to be full of cheer, new possibilities, a new lot in life. I think that’s why, when it doesn’t feel that way for you, it’s even worse – not just that you don’t feel optimistic, but that you don’t feel optimistic, AND you know you’re supposed to.

I’m in a funk, and I feel like talking it out through writing. Writing is my outlet, my dream job, something I take pride in when working other jobs. I haven’t written a lot over here in a while, most of my efforts centered on Comparative Geeks and some fiction world-building. However, I would like to get more over here – and write more fiction – and overall just write more. Three posts a week on Comparative Geeks was just the beginning!

So if you feel like, read on and move through my malaise with me, and join me at the end where I try to find hope and an outlet.

Read more of this post

Now that I’m a member of the ALA…

I’ve had some comments about the term “hipster librarian” so I guess I should post the source of that phrase…

IST 511 – Day 5

This was hand-crafted in JFK on Saturday, but the WiFi in my wing did not work so well. Here we go!

So Friday was our poster session, which we did in the style of a conference poster session. Lots of topics, lots of people passing through with passing curiosity. Our main focus was to tackle a topic that is contentious for librarians – there are plenty of controversies on which librarians agree for the most part, after all. You can find Harry Potter on the shelves, right?

Our poster began as a search into controversial forms of funding libraries. After all, the American Library Association is against charging fees of any kind – to the point of being against overdue fines. Charging for services discriminates against those who cannot pay, and discourages those who can. Or so goes the argument. So what did we find? Read more of this post

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