Over on AISL blog today…

Today I am sharing some tips and tricks for planning a bookish event over on the AISL blog.

I had the privilege of putting on a Harry Potter Holiday Feast in December 2015 — It was so much fun to pull together and the students had a blast. Before I share a few tips and tricks I figured out along the way, I thought I would give you an overview of the event.

set up

We transformed a space on campus into the Great Hall using House crests, gold chargers leftover from prom, and wizard hats with the House shields on them! For activities, we set up a Mirror of Erised photobooth, a Floo Flame fireplace photo-op, and a wand duel. Food was provided by the Dining Hall with some additional desserts from Flourish and Blotts.

Gryffindor house

Without further ado, here are some things to think about before putting on a bookish event:

To see the tips and tricks, head over to the AISL blog!

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Library School Day in the Life 2013: Tuesday – Friday

I am documenting my life for Hack Library School’s Library Student Day in the Life. For other great bloggers who are participating, check here.

After I posted last Monday, I realized that midterms was absolutely the wrong time to try to blog every day! As much as I love sharing pieces of my life — especially for something as cool as the Hack Library School “Day in the Life” — it’s just too much pressure during a stressful time at work. Rather than adding even more to my plate with daily posts, I thought I would post what my days looked like as a whole. Without further ado…

Tuesday: 

Tuesdays are “school days” for me — I scheduled all my courses on Tuesdays and Thursdays this semester so that I would have more time for my internships. My first course of the day, Cataloging, is at the absurd 8am hour. If I didn’t love the class so much I might be inclined to resent the sleep invasion.

The course covers the fundamentals of cataloging books and other printed materials. Of course this is much more difficult than it sounds. Have you ever seen a MARC cataloging record?

Sample MARC record

Not as simple, right?

After my cataloging class, I rushed to the library to get in some last-minute studying for a midterm. Management for Information Professionals is a required course for my masters but it’s also one of the least “library science” related. A lot of what we’re learning is basic management theory (administrative model, scientific model, etc) rather than putting all of it in a library setting. The midterm went well…I think.

Wednesday:

I spend Wednesday mornings interning at Duke University Press. For more about my job there check out my previous “day in the life” post here. I love working at DUP because I get to work with many editorial assistants. Since each editor’s list is so different, I sometimes feel like I have three different jobs! The tasks are never the same so the learning curve can be a little steep — at least it’s never boring!

Later in the day I head over to my internship at the public library. Wednesdays are usually programming nights so I either help out with the events or cover the desk while someone else works them. This Wednesday there weren’t any programs, so I got to answer reference questions and help people find books. I never thought I would end up in a public library but this internship has shown me how much fun it can be. For more on why I love working at a public library check out this post.

Thursday

Much like Tuesday, I start my day in Cataloging. With the weight of the midterm no longer hanging over our heads we work on serials. Just when we thought we’d gotten our footing, these pulled the rug right out from underneath us! Serials are cataloged in a very different way from books, especially because we are learning to catalog them using a different (older) set of rules. Though I took furious notes during class, I’m fairly sure the material will take a few more days to sink in.

My afternoon class is an introduction to databases. I’ll be honest — I signed up for this class because it fit into my schedule well. I had never considered doing a library job that required me to learn the inner workings of a database, nor had I ever thought I would understand the structure if I tried! Color me surprised. This is by far my favorite class. Perhaps it’s because I get to use a different part of my brain or maybe because it’s set up more like an undergraduate class — who knows the reason, I just know that it rocks my socks! I can’t imagine doing a library job without understanding databases; they now seem so integral.

Friday

Another day, another shift at Duke University Press. Fridays are a change of pace at the press because I usually get to work on manuscript descriptions. This means that I get to read the manuscript (or at least the introduction and first chapter) and write a one-page description of the author’s argument and main points. Sometimes I feel completely out of my depth but more often than not one of my Kenyon courses touched on the topic at hand — see, a liberal arts education IS useful! To be honest, without the range of courses I took at Kenyon I would be up a creek. One week I could be working on a political book about a former president, the next week it might be about Afghanistan during the turn of the century!

Liberal Arts

After working at the Press, I head off to the library for another closing shift. I usually spend an hour working on readers advisory lists or programming before hopping on the desk to answer patron questions. Since the library closes at 6pm on Fridays there’s usually a flurry of activity in the DVD section; I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked, “Do you guys have any comedies?” You’re asking the wrong librarian, this girl prefers documentaries or period pieces!

So there’s my typical week in a nutshell. I hope it maybe convinced you that library science isn’t all shelving books and shushing anymore!

Beauty Queens by Libba Bray

Beauty Queens

by Libba Bray

Survival. Of the fittest.

The fifty contestants in the Miss Teen Dream Pageant thought this was going to be a fun trip to the beach, where they could parade in their state-appropriate costumes and compete in front of the cameras. But sadly, their airplane had another idea, crashing on a desert island and leaving the survivors stranded with little food, little water, and practically no eyeliner.
What’s a beauty queen to do? Continue to practice for the talent portion of the program – or wrestle snakes to the ground? Get a perfect tan – or learn to run wild? And what should happen when the sexy pirates show up?
Welcome to the heart of non-exfoliated darkness. Your tour guide? None other than Libba Bray, the hilarious, sensational, Printz Award-winning author of A Great and Terrible Beauty and Going Bovine. The result is a novel that will make you laugh, make you think, and make you never see beauty the same way again.

Book blurb from Amazon

Reviews for Beauty Queens

LATimes

YALSA

NYT

Booklist

Awards for Beauty Queens

Rainbow List 2012 – GLBTQ (ALA)

Audie Awards – Best Author Read Novel 

Best Books for Young Adults 2012 (Booklist)

Amelia Bloomer List 2012 – Feminism (ALA)

2012 Best Fiction for Young Adults (ALA)

Buy Beauty Queens

Indiebound

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Get Beauty Queens at Your Library!

Durham County Public Library

Orange County Public Library

Chapel Hill Public Library

More by Libba Bray

*note: This page was created for my INLS 530 class at SILS UNC Chapel Hill*

Banned Books Week Is Here!

As a MSLS student, I am very rightfully enamored with the tradition of Banned Books Week. If you’re not familiar with the project, here’s a little blurb from the official website:

Banned Books Week is the national book community’s annual celebration of the freedom to read. Hundreds of libraries and bookstores around the country draw attention to the problem of censorship by mounting displays of challenged books and hosting a variety of events. The 2012 celebration of Banned Books Week will be held from September 30 through October 6. Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries. More than 11,300 books have been challenged since 1982. For more information on Banned Books Week, click here. According to the American Library Association, there were 326 challenges reported to the Office of Intellectual Freedom in 2011, and many more go unreported.

Bill Moyers on Banned Books Week from BillMoyers.com on Vimeo.

So for your viewing pleasure here’s a little video about the importance of banned book week and what it means to censor reading. Enjoy!

Get Fired Up About Librarianship

This week in my INLS 513 (Collection Management) class we watched a really inspiring video about the mission of librarians. So much of what librarians do goes on behind the scenes so it’s easy for people to think that books are the only thing we do. The video proves that it is so much more! I’ve embedded the video below but I’ll have to warn you that it is about an hour long. Let me know what you think!

Grand Challenges of Librarianship. R David Lankes vid Biblioteksdagarna 2011 from Svensk Biblioteksförening on Vimeo.

 

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Library School: First Week Reflections

As of last night I’ve officially completed my first week as a master’s student and I’m more excited than ever about my chosen career path. Every class seems new and exciting! Here’s a breakdown of what I’ve learned so far:

  1. Everyone that I have met has a deep love of J.K. Rowling. During orientation someone mentioned an obscure HP line and everyone understood. I think I’ve found my people.
  2. There are people from all different backgrounds here at SILS. At Kenyon, it was expected that everyone had come from roughly the same academic experience but here that’s really not the case. It’s interesting to see what different people bring to the table!
  3. There are no grades. This one is the biggest shocker to me! As someone who has at times been called an overachiever, it’s going to take some time to learn to live without the ever-present ‘A.’ Here at SILS, classes are H/P/F, meaning high pass, pass and fail.
  4. Technology in the classroom is encouraged. I’m not sure how to deal with professors telling us to bring our laptops to class to tweet or google! The SILS program is about sharing collaboratively so the professors have encouraged us to be active on the web

 

It’s been a great first week but the ease into classes is officially over — homework calls!

 

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