Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/30/2010

Cover of the pulp magazine Strange Tales of Mystery and Terror (October 1932) featuring "The Hunters from Beyond" by Clark Ashton Smith.

Daily Thoughts 6/30/2010

I recommended Swann Galleries as an auction house for rare books. They have an excellent reputation.

Stores See Google as Ally In Ebook Market.

Today has been an interesting day. There are budget problems where I am and I waiting to see what will finally happen. It is not pleasant. I am trying to maintain my focus today.

I am starting to come to terms with it and think of next steps along the way. It is a matter of deep and abiding patience.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/29/2010

The New Novel, Winslow Homer, 1877 Museum of Fine arts, Springfield, Mass

Daily Thoughts 6/29/2010

We spent some time talking with a gentleman from GO2 media design about redesigning our website. They have designed a number of other library websites.

I spent some time reading Jason Shhhh! an almost silent comic with a variety of slice of life scenes. They are curious with black and white line art. It is hard to describe the exact nature of the art. I rather like it. This is a link to an article about it.

Two new books came in for to read, Deank Koontz's Frankenstein lost souls and Fitzpatrick's War by Theodore Judson.

Today has been fairly quiet. It was a chance to look at the displays and put some orders together as well as get ready for some meetings on telephone customer service, a staff meeting, and a meeting on using electronic ordering for our library this week.

I also had a chance to read some more Harry Mintzberg's Managing. I am reading a bit about the concept in leadership of moving away from I to we. The point is to be more team oriented and speak and identify as part of a community. This is difficult in some ways. He uses the word communityship which is a concept which I'm trying to get my mind around.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/28/2010

cover scan of Old Sleuth Library, no.40, from the collection of Larry Latham

Daily Thoughts 6/28/2010

I took some time to read Iron West by Doug TenNapel. It is a graphic novel set in the old west. The style of the story is very tongue in cheek. The drawing is a bit different. Doug TenNapel uses a very loose style with very wide brush strokes. I liked the storyline far better than the art. It is very cartoonish. The drawings contain a lot of humor.

It is cowboys versus robots. The robots are replacing people. It is rather silly to look at robots with sixguns. There is also a sasquatch and an old native american medicine man. This makes for a kind of mixed up story. It is very much a mish mash. It seems to be drawn more for the action and humor than a coherent storyline.

There is a fight between the loch ness monster and a giant robot made from an old west train. Ultimately, it does pull together in the end, but not before a lot of silliness. If you want to relax and read something for lighthearted humor and action, this graphic novel would fit the bill.

There is a map of the pattern of library closings here. It shows a steady increase in library closings between 2008 and 2010

Today was the opening day for Summer Reading, June 28, 2010. We sat in the lobby next to the gallery and handed out flyers to sign up for the teen summer reading program and the adult summer reading program. We also signed people up online on a laptop. We are planning on having a raffle at the end of the summer for people who sign up and read books or listen to audiobooks. I also handed out flyers for events associated with the summer reading program.

It was a pleasant thing to do. We answered peoples questions and had cookies for people to snack on. I think I handed out a little over 45 signup sheets for adults and signed up a few more people online as well. The childrens signup was downstairs.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/27/2010

Profile of Adam Smith authors of An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations Etching created by Cadell and Davies (1811), John Horsburgh (1828) or R.C. Bell (1872). The original depiction of smith was created in 1787 By James Tassie in the form of an enamel paste medallion. Smith did not usually sit for his portrait, so a considerable number of engravings and busts of Smith were made not from observation but from the same enamel medallion produced by Tassie, an artist who could convince Smith to sit.

Daily Thoughts 6/27/2010

I have started reading Henry Mintzberg, Managing. Harry Mintzberg is a professor of management studies at McGill University in Montreal in Canada. This makes the book have a different perspective. The author writes about Canadian, British, French, and Dutch companies which gives a more international perspective to his writing. He also talks about the Harvard Business Review. This comes across as more international in flavor.

His focus is on practice, not just theory. The focus of the program he teaches at is practice. He covers the day to day activities of what happens inside organizations in private corporations, publicly traded corporations, government, and nonprofit sector. There is a focus on tracking what actually happens in the day to day activities from line managers all the way up to chief executives.

I took a brief break from reading and watched a bit of James Cameron's Avatar which is quite interesting. I am enjoying the film so far.

If you have time, and are in the United States, Tuesday is Library Advocacy Day, call or write your senator or congressperson about libraries.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half: The Strategic Shopping Method Proven to Slash Food and Drugstore Costs- Stephanie Nelson

The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half: The Strategic Shopping Method Proven to Slash Food and Drugstore Costs by Stephanie Nelson

This book exists to sell a website . The website collects personal information then gives out online coupons. It is a trade off. I saved about $7 from the online printable coupons when I went shopping this week.

It also reminded me to check the grocery circular at my supermarket and my local drugstore while I was there. Money is tight so I tried it. I saved some more money at Walgreens on a few items like toilet paper and hand soap. Another $3.

While I was at the produce store, I got a few things which were cheaper at the produce store than the supermarket; yogurt, hummus, vegetables and fruit are cheaper at the local produce store than the supermarket. The reason it is this way is they don't spend as much on advertising and other things. The Coupon Mom book reminds you to comparison shop. There was probably a difference of another $10.

While I was at the supermarket, I bought a case of diet coke. It is cheaper than buying it from the vending machine at work. This probably saved me another $5 this week. The book reminds you to eat at home more. I have been packing a lunch starting last week. This probably saves me another $10 for the week.

I had a few coupons left over which I will keep in a folder for when I will need them.

There is nothing brilliant or new in this book other than the online printable coupons. I went shopping on Saturday so I did not get a chance to look at the coupons in the Sunday paper. This might have saved me a little bit more money. I saved $35 this week. I won't say it is half of my grocery bill, but I am just starting. It could add up to a decent amount of money over time. This is a solid guide on how to comparison shop and use coupons. There is a lot of hype in it, but it also has some good advice.

The real question is how much money is your time worth. It takes a little bit of effort to do this.

The book is easy to read. It has an index, basic charts, and lots of testimonials from people who have used her website. The testimonials are not that believable. There are also numerous shopping tips which are much more useful than the testimonials. For example, it is cheaper to buy spices and bulk dry goods from the produce store most of the time than the grocery store.

Stephanie Nelson has appeared on Oprah, CNN, and the Today Show. She comes across as practical and personable. There is something satisfying and practical about an Assistant Professor of Classics at Boston University writing about coupons.

Daily Thoughts 6/26/2010

17th century bronze lectern, Notre-Dame-la-Grande church, Poitiers, June 2008, Danielclauzier, own work, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0, Found on Wikimedia.

Daily Thoughts 6/26/2010

I finished reading Much Fall of Blood by Dave Freer, Mercedes Lackey, and Eric Flint. The Heirs of Alexandria series started with The Shadow of the Lion a fantasy set in a magical Venice. It was followed by This Rough Magic which was set in the Isle of Corfu. There was a standalone book by Dave Freer called A Mankind Witch that was set in Iceland. This book was quite entertaining because of Dave Freer's sense of humor. Much Fall of Blood could be considered the third book in the series, or the fourth book in the setting.

I have very much enjoyed reading this alternate history/fantasy. The magic is done well, so are the villains and heros. They are mashups of figures from history that are given magical powers; Countess Bartholdy, Duke Vlad of Valahia, Prince Manfred, Bortai from the Hawk Clan of the Mongols, Jagiellon Grand Duke of Lithuania, and others.

The settings are Aquitaine (a magical France), The Holy Roman Empire (think christianity with contact with angels and the forces of light and darkness), The League of Armagh (a kind of mystical Celtic state), the Territories of the Knights of the Holy Trinity (think of the knights Templar), the Grand Duchy of Lithuania and Poland (controlled by the dark forces of Chernobog), and the Kingdom of Hungary (influenced by the wicked Countess Bartholdy). There are also cities in Italy, Milan, Venice, and Rome. With Much Fall of Blood, we get introduced to Prince Vlad, Duke of Valahia, grandson of the dragon, as well as characters from the mongol hordes. The setting is fantastic.

The breaking point in the series, The Heirs of Alexandria, with actual history is the survival of Hypatia and the Library of Alexandria creating a very different world filled with magic.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/25/2010

English writer Neil Gaiman. Photograph taken at the 2007 Scream Awards. Source is Neil Gaiman. Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 from Wikimedia.

Daily Thoughts 6/24/2010

Neil Gaiman on closing libraries being a terrible mistake. He is a wonderful author and has done a lot to support libraries and intellectual freedom. My favorite of his books is Neverwhere and my favorite of his graphic novels is Stardust. The Graveyard Book is also an excellent read.

Ebooks Libraries at the Tipping is $20 for early bird registration it is on September 29 Hopefully, I should be able to attend this. It should be very interesting.

Today has been quiet. I spent some time updating the displays and looking at items that need to be processed to be added.

I also read some more of Much Fall of Blood by Mercedes Lackey, Eric Flint, and Dave Freer. I am enjoying the mix of history, fantasy, and magic.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/24/2010

Heyman Dullaert. A trompe l'oeil with plumes in an ink bottle, a letter, a seal stamp, a delft pot and a bottle, arranged upon a wooden shelf. Oil on Panel

Daily Thoughts 6/24/2010

The Westchester Library System where I work is facing cuts. This is an article on the cuts.

I am looking at a graphic novel called Mr. Mendoza's Paintbrush. It is beautiful in its style. The story is about a man who writes graffiti about the lives of people in a small Mexican town. The artist Christopher Cardinale is a muralist. His website has some very interesting artwork. The story and artwork are wonderful to look at. The writer, Luis Alberto Urrea has written many novels including Into The Beautiful North and a pulitzer prize finalist for The Devil's Highway. His writing is very entertaining and relevant.

I wrote a flyer for The Summer Reading Events that are coming up at our library this morning. Mostly, I have been planning things like meetings. Tomorrow I am calling Poets House to see if they can help us with working on poetry at our library.

I am checking out Henry Mintzberg, Managing as the next book I will read. It is a book of theory. It looks quite interesting. He focuses on management in practice and is critical of a purely numbers oriented approach.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/23/2010

Reading In The Forest, Oil On Canvas, 1880, Paris, Public Domain, Wikimedia, Eva Gonzales

Daily Thoughts 6/23/2010

I have been reading more of Coupon Mom's and looking at the website. There is a little bit of money to be saved, not a huge amount for the effort involved. The online coupons are kind of interesting. I don't buy most of this stuff.

This book is proving to be about much more than coupons. She describes the advantages and disadvantages of shopping at big box stores, supermarkets, discount stores, health food stores, wholesale clubs, and bare bones stores. I liked some of her ideas.

She reminds us that it is not good to buy giant packages of junk food from wholesalers, this leads to overconsumption and an unhealthy lifestyle. She also tells us that it is cheaper to buy fresh herbs and bulk food products like nuts from produce stores and healthfood stores than supermarkets. Stephanie Nelson follows the maxim that we must watch what we put into the refrigerator to make sure we are buying what we need, 15%-40% of food in refrigerators goes to waste in the United States.

The author tells us that it is cheaper to eat vegetarian on occassion. Vegetables, rice, and beans are cheaper than meats or cheeses. I am about half way through the book and am enjoying reading it. I have sent ten online coupons to my email inbox for things which I purchase regularly.

There is something different about writing about practical books. Most reviewers will not describe their experience using practical books; books on homeownership, power tools, carpentry, plumbing, personal finance, and other practical subjects are often not reviewed enough. Maybe, there isn't enough intellectual cachet in it.

Today has been quite busy. I have been working on a few things. The new display advertising for the playaways came in. We now have new bookmarks, signage, and posters for our playaways section and will soon have new packaging for the playaways. I also printed the Chick Lit bookmark today.

We are almost ready for the Adult Summer Reading in July and August We just put together a banner for adult summer reading and I am working on creating a flyer for the events associated with the summer reading program. We have two author events in July, two brown bag book talks, and a literary tea planned so far.

One of my colleagues suggested a graphic novel, Rabbi Harvey vs. the Wisdom Kid, A Graphic Novel of Dueling Jewish Folktales In the Wild West by Steve Sheinkin. It came out in March 2010. Another book came in for me, Much Fall of Blood by Mercedes Lackey, Eric Flint, and Dave Freer. I especially like the writing of Dave Freer. I put in a request for a weird western graphic novel, Iron West by Doug TenNapel which I saw from this list

On another thought, acccess to our library catalog will soon be available as an Iphone App

I finished reading The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills In Half by Stephanie Nelson. It has an old fashioned thriftiness to it. The author tells us she uses baking soda, vinegar, borax, and rubbing alcohol for her cleaning needs. She also makes a recommendation that you should grow your own vegetables, even using the term "victory garden". It has a homespun feel to it in parts even though it is very much touting coupons from major brands.

I started reading Much Fall of Blood by Mercedes Lackey, Dave Freer, and Eric Flint. Each author has numerous fantasy novels to their name and a decent following of readers. They somehow mesh well writing this novel. This is the third novel in a series. The first two are The Shadow of the Lion and This Rough Magic. It is set in a medieval Europe filled with magic both black and white. The characters are drawn from historical figures like Madame Bathory, Prince Manfred, and Prince Vlad Duke of Valahia. It starts nicely, moving between Venice, the Carpathians, and the tents of the Golden horde.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/22/2010

Design on Page 123 of The Library by Andrew Lang, c1881

Daily Thoughts 6/22/2010

This morning I read some more of Bootlegger's Daughter by Margaret Maron on the train to work. The characters are quite interesting. There is plenty of tension in the story because the author includes bits on sexism, racism, and homophobia. She writes about peoples prejudices and fears and has some quite interesting conversations between characters. It may make some people uncomfortable, but it has a direct feeling to it missing from many other novels.

I put The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half by Stephanie Nelson on hold. I don't usually cut coupons, but I've noticed that food prices are rising and I think I might need to start doing this. It came in this afternoon for me to read with another book, The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. The Last Lecture is a lecture by a college professor from Carnegie Mellon who was dying of terminal cancer. It was a bestseller.

There is a new teen novel which looks like quite interesting called Go Mutants! by Larry Doyle. Universal pictures has already bought the film rights. It is a mix of teen angst and aliens and monsters from 1950s B Movies. It sounds very good.

Today has been a day to schedule and arrange for programs. We are working on a Brown Bag Lunch book talk series that will be tied in with the Adult Summer Reading Program.

The shifting in the storage area is moving along very smoothly. Tomorrow, I think I'll ask to have the Chick Lit bookmarks printed.

I finished reading Bootlegger's Daughter by Margaret Maron. I enjoyed reading it a lot. I am not going to review it. It feels strange thinking about reviewing something that you have to read for a class. I also logged into the Readers Advisory 101 class for the first time. It is being presented by the RUSA (Reference and User Services Association) division of the American Library Association.

I have started The Coupon Mom's Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills In Half. It seems like a lot of hype. I have managed to find four online coupons so far to print. There are a few strategies in it to reduce grocery bills. This is the kind of book where the results you get from reading the book are what matters. It is a practical book. The only way to know whether it works is to try out what Stephanie Nelson practices.

I also donated $5 to keep the Ning Book Blogs network going. They need $500 in total to keep the network going for the year. I find it quite useful. They are using the Paypal donations system.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/21/2010

Lesestunde, Pastell-Gemälde von Carsten Eggers, 80 x 110, 1988, Own Work, Eigenes Werk, Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-2.5, Found on Wikimedia

Daily Thoughts 6/21/2010

Lerner Publishing sent four books to my library as a prize from Book Expo America, Draw In The Dark by Ilsa J. Bick, Traitor by Gudrun Pausewang, I-1I by Steve Brezenoff, and The Freak Observer by Blythe Woolston. These are all young adult titles.

Today was a very busy day. The shifting in the storage area is moving along nicely. We also have to work on the Adult Summer Reading Program. The Evance website is moving along nicely. There are several events that are associated with adult summer reading including some author readings, two brown bag book discussions, and a literary tea for the finale. We are going to be signing up people via our website soon. The Friends of the Library will be helping us with putting together the literary tea for adults.

We also have to work on creating a display for summer reading. I have a few ideas for bookmarks, a brochure, some signage, and a flyer. It is a lot to plan on.

We put up a new sign for the foreign language books and I finished creating a bookmark for Chick Lit.

On the way home, I read some more of Margaret Maron Bootlegger's Daughter. The main character, Deborah Knott's father sold bootleg whiskey and went to jail then was pardoned. The novel has a lot of politics in it. Deborah Knott is running for Judge while she is finding out a mystery. There is a lot of southern culture in the novel which is set in North Carolina. I like it.

Rebecca Brothers sent a comment recently about her charity to help people in Nashville, Tennessee get books. There was serious flooding in Nashville. It got into many of the schools. Rebecca is an english teacher. Her charity is A Dry Read: New Books For Nashville.

I remember her at the Book Bloggers Convention. She was very pleasant and mannerly. She made little individual lemon cakes with yellow bow ties for her charity and left them as a dessert for lunch with a card. Information about her charity can be found at

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/20/2010

Berthe Morisot, The Mother and Sister of the Artist, National Gallery of Art, 1869-1870, Washington DC. USA

Daily Thoughts 6/20/2010

I started reading Bootlegger's Daughter by Margaret Maron for my Readers Advisory 101 course. It is a mystery. Pretty soon, I will have finished reading all the background reading for the course. I like being ready well beforehand for these things.

I took some time to join up with the social media aspects of the New York Library Association. I have NYLA on twitter, NYLA New Members Roundtable, the Facebook page for NYLA, and The Facebook New Members Roundtable for NYLA. This should be interesting. I also found a group on Linked In for NYLA and applied. Every day, I am going to take a bit to look at NYLA's resources.

I read some of Bootlegger's Daughter at the laundromat today. It is not something I would have picked up on my own. I prefer noire, hard boiled, and police procedurals when I read mystery. This mystery really does not fit into these categories. It is a mystery set in North Carolina featuring a woman attorney who is investigating the death of a woman who died over a decade ago. There is a lot about southern politics and life. The Readers Advisory 101 class is introducing me to some new ideas already.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/19/2010

Woodblock print, about 1768, Suzuki Harunobu V&A Museum no. E.1053-1963 From Wikimedia

Daily Thoughts 6/19/2010

I check my blog stats sometimes. Here are a few interesting places that visitors have come from. Guy Who Reads, Library Juice Press, and Best of the Web Blogs -- Literature (Web Directory).

I am working on a Chick Lit Bookmark today. When I create bookmarks with lists of authors or books, I make sure the authors or titles are for books which our library owns. It is also preferable that the authors have more than one book published.

On the way home, I read some more of Ice Station. It is turning into a strange mish mash of conspiracy theories, suspense, paranoia, special forces, and aliens. As I read the book it becomes more and more odd. I can understand why it became a bestseller, it would appeal to suspense, conspiracy, and military action readers. There were lots and lots of silly, improbable action scenes involving scuba diving, big explosions, hover craft, icebergs, and underground ice stations. The action scenes were very cinematic in style.

Having finished reading Ice Station by Matthew J. Reilly, I can now say there are no aliens. There are irradiated mutant creatures, secret military cabals, man eating killer whales, black aircraft, and special forces teams, but no aliens. I was hoping there would be aliens. SETI was included in the story, but there were no aliens. It was silly escapism. I don't think this book would be something I would have read on my own. It took a Readers Advisory 101 class to motivate me to read it. I liked reading it. The book is c1999. I borrowed it from my library.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/18/2010

(personnelle) sur la littérature à partir d'images disponibles sur Wikipedia (domaine public ou libres de droits)

Daily Thoughts 6/18/2010

Today has been a quiet day, more relaxing than most. There are a lot less carts on the floor now, because a lot of the shifting has been finished in the storage area. I am contemplating weeding the oversize dewey 300s. I will have to work with the government documents librarian because many of them are government documents. Depository libraries have to get special permission to weed documents.

I am also contemplating creating a bookmark for chick lit books. This would be a new genre for me to explore. It is becoming quite popular. Meg Cabot and Lauren Weisberger are two prominent authors in the genre.

Next week, the adult summer reading program goes up on the website.

On the way home, I started reading Ice Station by Matthew J. Reilly. It is an utterly silly book. The book is reading for my Readers Advisory 101 class online. The premise is preposterous; the French and the United States are fighting over an alien artifact found under the ice in the antarctic. The story seems put together to describe French special forces versus American special forces soldiers in an exotic setting. It is pure escapism.

I have joined the NYLA New Members Roundtable email discussion list as well as the NYLA RASS Reference and Adult Services SEction email discussion list as my first steps into NYLA.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

New York Library Association and New York Library Meetup Combined Meeting

New York Library Association and New York Library Meetup Combined Meeting, June 17, 2010 6:00-9:00 p.m.

Tonight was the first combined meeting between New York Library Association and New York Library Meetup. It was at the City University of New York Graduate School for Journalism on 219 West 40th Street, Room 308. This was a chance to do a combined meeting on advocacy for public libraries. It was also the New York Library Association's first allied meeting to increase membership. New York Library Association is interested in increasing its activities in lower New York. Tinamarie Vella hosted the meeting.

Most of the New York Library Associations's activities are held upstate. For example, The Empire State Book Festival held on April 9 & 10 was held in Albany. The next NYLA conference will be held on November 3-6, 2010 in Saratoga Springs New York.

I found it to be quite interesting. We talked about the purpose of New York Librarians Meetup and what we planned to do for the future. Part of this was about future plans for the group. Stephanie L. Gross who is the Organizer for the New York Librarians Meetup mentioned the visit to the Jane Austen Exhibit at the Morgan Library & Museum as well as the visit to MOCCA (the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art) done earlier.

There were discussions on the We Will Not Be Shushed Read-In at Brooklyn Public Library which ran from Saturday June 12, 5 p.m. to Sunday, June 13, 5 p.m. . Attendees described the different advocacy campaigns for New York city libraries. This included the postcard campaign to support libraries as well as numerous organizations which were associated with advocacy.

Tinamarie Vella provided two excellent handouts. One was a list of advocacy resources on the internet for librarians. A few of them are Save Libraries , Geek The Library and, I Love Libraries . These are all worth looking at. The second handout was a guide to what the New York Library Association can do for you.

I have participated in sending postcards, making phone calls, and contacting my local representatives about libraries. There were a few resources I had not seen before which Tinamarie Vella listed, Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) Advocacy Page was one of them. .

The meeting touched on lots of different issues in librarianship. We got a chance to look at the NYLA (New York Library Association) website which has job listings as well as a variety of sections on different subjects in librarianship. The NYLA New Members Roundtable has a mentoring section for librarians. . All first time members are signed up for the New Members Roundtable. Currently, I am a member of the American Library Association and the Westchester Library Association. I just signed up on June 18, 2010 as first time member of NYLA for $25.

We also examined the New York Librarians Meetup page . On the New York Librarians Meetup we discussed the need to get people more active. If you are interested in social networking for librarians in the New York metro area, it is an excellent place to join. Participating has been quite enlightening.

People asked how they could use ALA Connect which is the social networking site for the American Library Association . I have used it mainly for taking classes online. It is excellent for this. I am going to be taking the Readers Advisory 101 class and will be using ALA Connect to participate in discussions for the class.

I also learned about other organizations that are tied in with libraries in New York. One of them which I heard about for the first time was the Deskset. The Deskset has dance, charity, and reading events. I have never been to their events, but they sound interesting. Their blog touches on reading, libraries, and books.

A more traditional group, The New York Library Club was discussed. This group holds formal dinners and events.

One of the possible venues which was mentioned for a library meetup was the Poets House . This would be a fantastic place to go. I very much love poetry. I hope they have the chance to do this. Another member offered to host meetings at Queens College which would be quite interesting.

There was also some mention of the larger professional associations, the ACRL NY chapter (Association of College and Research Libraries), ALA (the American Library Association), and the SLA (the Special Library Association). With budget cuts and layoffs there has been interest in increasing membership in professional associations and advocacy.

Metro New York was discussed as well in the context of professional development. Metro offers an excellent set of courses for librarians. I took a course on Twitter for librarians there. They are quite formal and professional in their approach. Metro recently introduced a membership for individual librarians called myMetro

The atmosphere was very congenial. The room had an overhead projector to display web pages as well as lots of comfortable seating. Coffee and cookies were served to attendees. They had printed badges with our image from the NY Librarian Meetup web page. One of my quirks is that I collect conference attendance badges. This will go into the bag with other conferences attended; Book Expo, Tools of Change for Publishing, PC World, New York Comic Con and others.

This a short, informal summary of my experience at the meeting. I may have some more formal thoughts tomorrow. I learned a lot from attending the meeting. This is a major purpose of social networking; to go out and meet and learn from the people who you interact with on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, and other places. There are many people who I hope to see from the networks I have joined. People go to Tweetups, Meetups, and other events.

Daily Thoughts 6/17/2010

Baschenis, Evaristo ~ Still Life with Musical Instruments, undated, oil on canvas,Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan.

Daily Thoughts 6/17/2010

Flashback: NYC's Libraries, As They Face Closures from Gothamist online.

I am going to the New York Librarians Meetup today. It is a combined meetup in alliance with the New York Library Association. The meeup is about library advocacy. It is something which is very important right now if you work in libraries. Right now libraries are facing tough budgets everywhere.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/16/2010

Pierre August Renoir, Camille Monet Reading, Oil On Canvas, 1873

Daily Thoughts 6/16/2010

I finished reading Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card on the train to work. It is the book which made Orson Scott Card's career. The book won both the Hugo and Nebula Awards. It is on the top 100 books to read for young adults by the American Library Association. If you like science fiction, you should read it. The book speaks for itself.

We moved a lot of books in the storage area today including law books and fiction. It is moving along very nicely. Also, I looked at magazines for ordering; booklist and publishers weekly.

I had the graphic novels club today. It went alright. The anime club from the high school borrowed two dvds, Steamboy and Kiki's Delivery Service, both which are fun to watch.

I had a little bit of time to pick out some poetry books for Saturday. I picked out books by Edward Hirsch, Nikki Giovanni, Langston Hughes, Charles Simic, Rita Dove, Alice Walker, Diane Wakoski, Jack Kerouac, and many others. I made sure that the new poetry books were ready for Saturday. I am looking at two poetry books right now, Bright Wings An Illustrated Anthology of Poems About Birds Edited by Billy Collins with Paintings by David Allen Sibley and Jorge Luis Borges The Sonnets. The Sonnets is a dual language edition with Spanish on one side and English on the other. Both of these books are copyright 2010.

The Viscount Who Loved Me was truly awful. It surprised me that it was one of the books which was requested for my Readers Advisory 101 Course. It was better than Danielle Steel, I'll give it that much. I am not a fan of her writing. Sometimes, we are asked to read things which we don't like to understand what patrons want. I read a few urban fiction novels when they were first coming out to see what the genre was about. Omar Tyree is a fairly entertaining writer of street literature. I still have not read any chick lit. I probably should.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/15/2010

Annaberg-Buchholz, Ladenschild einer Buchhandlungin der Wolkensteiner Straße, April 2010, Photo: Andreas Praefcke (Own Work), Creative Commons Attribution 3.0

Daily Thoughts 6/15/2010

I have to put The Affinity Bridge by George Mann down. It is rather dry and I am finding it a bit stuffy. The concepts are interesting, the story is interesting, the writing is not that exciting.

I finally have all four books for my Readers Advisory 101 Course, Enders Game by Orson Scott Card, The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn, Ice Station by Matthew J. Reilly, and Bootlegger's Daughter by Margaret Maron. These are solid, predictable reads.

I received an advanced uncorrected proof for The Last Block In Harlem A Novel by Christopher Herz. It is published by Amazon Encore which is a new venture by Amazon.

Today, I spent some time working in the storage area looking at shifting books. I also have been playing with Evance which is a system for running summer reading programs. I am looking at the adult summer reading module. I have figured out how to add a few links, input reviews, and setup a basic message about Adult Summer Reading. I am just getting the hang of the system.

Something which I have noticed that people like to read is fiction about the Amish. The most popular author is Beverly Lewis. It is a very different way of living to read about.

I also took a look through the gift books. I find the easiest thing to find and add are the classics. Paperback copies of The Odyssey, The Awakening by Kate Chopin, Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, The Oresteia by Aeschylus, Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury and other classic writers get donated constantly and are always used by the high school students.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/14/2010

Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin recites his poem before Gavrila Derzhavin during the Tsarskoye Selo Lyceum exam on January 8th, 1815. Oil on canvas. 123,7 × 195,5 cm. Tsarskoye Selo Lyceum (All-Russia A. S. Pushkin Museum), St. Petersburg.

Daily Thoughts 6/14/2010

Two books came in for me to read today. The first is Enders Game by Orson Scott Card which is required reading for my Readers Advisory 101 Class. The second is The Affinity Bridge by George Mann. This is a steampunk novel with the main characters being two detectives. I rather like cross genre novels. It makes things interesting.

I stopped reading A Novel Bookstore. The setting and the style did not appeal to me. I read the requisite fifty pages into the novel and it was enough. I am still reading The Viscount Who Loved Me. It is horrid. Fat corgis, flirting, and masked balls just are not my style. It is a definite reminder of how bland peoples lives must be to read this kind of romance novel.

I have also started on Enders Game by Orson Scott Card. It has a much different feel reading it than the first time I read the science fiction novel. There is a much stronger feeling of cruelty and desperation in the novel. It is also something I have to read for the Readers Advisory 101 class.

I started a few pages into The Affinity Bridge. The novel starts in India. I am reading three novels right now.

Today was quiet and steady. Three of my new bookmarks were printed up. Hopefully, they will be appreciated. I also spent some time checking the back orders for Book Wholesalers Incorporated. The books in storage are being shifted around. I also spent some time looking at MP3 Players in the library setting. Some libraries loan MP3 Players out.

Today was spent on minor details; checking on the poetry program and graphic novel program, looking at minor corrections on the website, and other small things. It is the small things that catch you.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Changeless An Alexia Tarabotti Novel by Gail Carriger

Changeless An Alexia Tarabotti Novel by Gail Carriger

This is the second novel in the Parasol Protectorate series featuring Alexia Tarabotti. It is set in a Victorian England with touches of steampunk. The first was Soulless. Alexia is now Lady Maccon. She is married to Conall Maccon who is a werewolf. She is the lady of a house of werewolves.

In this novel, paranormals are mysteriously losing their powers. This is bad for England because so much of their military power lies in regiments of vampires and werewolves. It is a mystery for Lady Maccon to solve. She travels between England and Scotland by dirigible, she hobnobs with werewolves, vampires, and nobility. At the same time she takes tea, wears fashionable dress, and reads the society papers.

The novel is lighthearted entertainment. The writing breaks boundaries by moving between a variety of genres from gaslight to romance to steampunk to adventure. The writing is more comic adventure than scary. She wards off the villains with her trustry umbrella and dangerous hatpins.

The backstory is one of an eccentric, intelligent lady with a difficult family and quirky friends both normal and paranormal (ghosts, vampires, and werewolves). Her friend Ivy is entranced by terrible hats and her sister must travel with her to Scotland to avoid scandal.

The third book in the series coming out in September 2010, Blameless, should be as entertaining as the first two.

Daily Thoughts 6/13/2010

Dr. Seuss cartoon, 14 November 2006, Image From Wikipedia Article by Greg Williams, Creative Commons Attributions-Share Alike 2.5 Generic on Wikimedia

Daily Thoughts 6/13/2010

During the last several days, I have been watching a dvd called Seuss Celebration 9 Favorite Televised Classics. It includes The Lorax, The Cat In The Hat, Pontofell Pock and His Magic Piano, Green Eggs and Ham, Sneetches, Zax, Grinch Night, The Grinch Grinches The Cat In The Hat, and The Hoober Bloober Highway. Some of these are cartoons which I had never heard of before. They are both longer, more colorful, more oddball, and stranger than the books of the same name.

All of them include singing and piano music. Each video comes with a sing a long which was a surprise. Dr. Seuss used piano music in many of his works. His live action movie, The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T is very musical. The vision you get of how he intends to have his books read is very different if you watch the cartoons. I very much liked watching The Lorax. I never read the book. My favorite of the collection was Green Eggs and Ham.

The arrangement of the menus is a little odd to look at. It could have been different. I am also not certain that the transfer from the older tapes is perfect, but it is good enought to enjoy.

This collection is nothing like the Beginner Book Videos of Dr. Seuss, each story includes a lot of material that is not in the books. Each cartoon runs for a full half hour in this version, much longer than it takes to read the books. It also has the cartoon characters singing parts of the text you would have read in the book. The Beginner Book Videos are a lot more formal.

The Cat In the Hat has a very different feel than the modern interpretation of Cat In The Hat like you might see with Jim Carrie. It is not a Cat In The Hat you may be familiar with. The cartoon character is much more of a tricky rascal. It is much closer to Dr. Seuss's cartoon works which you might see in the three volume set, Theodor Seuss Geisel, The Early Works of Dr. Seuss. I enjoyed watching it. I think children and adults will like it. I am a big fan of Dr. Seuss.

I did not read that much this weekend. I spent more time writing reviews. I just started reading an uncorrected proof of A Novel Bookstore by Laurence Cosse. The book is published by Europa Editions, it is coming out in September 2010 and is translated from French. So far, I have figured out that this is a mix of a suspense story and a book about literature set in France.

Digital Self Publishing Shakes Up Traditional Book Industry, an article from the Wall Street Journal. Digital Self Publishing Shakes Up Traditional Book Industry

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Drive The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink

Drive The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink

Drive is about intrinisic motivation or self motivation. The drives which lead us to excel; autonomy, purpose, and mastery. It is about how these drives are becoming more prevalent in the modern workplace. White collar work is going through the same route as blue collar work. It is being outsourced, homesourced, and automated. The creative aspects of white collar work are what survives. Daniel H. Pink is trying to counter current management theory which is often inadequate to deal with modern workplaces. He argues this is one of the reasons there has been so much economic uphieval.

He argues for an end to a focus on a rote work environment with strong fixed hours, routine work, and incentive plans. He also attacks carrot and stick management styles. In his view, there should be solid wages, more autonomy for workers, greater learning opportunities, and a focus on more than just profits.

Some of the changes in work which he describes are the ROWE (Results Only Work Environment) created by Best Buy where scheduling becomes very flexible and Google's focus on giving its engineers 20% of their time to work on projects of their own design.

He also introduces us to psychological theories of motivation that are focused on what goes on inside people. He describes how optimal experiences and performance at work are not necessarily tied to incentives, but have a lot to do with the environment in the workplace. Two people he focuses on are Edward L. Deci and Mihaly Csikszentmihaly.

Sometimes, I think Daniel H. Pink draws too much from mainstream management theorists to make his point. Peter F. Drucker, Gary Hamel, and Jim Collins are all very standard business leaders. It seems like he is often making points using people who have a different management style than the one he is proposing.

I liked his list of recommended reading. I plan on reading Infinite Games A Vision of Life as Play and Possibility by James P. Carse. I have already read Talent Is Overrated What Really Separates World Class Performers From Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin.

This book would be good for people whose work is autonomous; artists, writers, programmers, and other creatives. I saw the book mentioned on Tobias Buckell's blog who is a science fiction writer. It also might be helpful for people who have to manage in an increasingly creative work environment.

Daily Thoughts 6/12/2010

Poster promoting President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's four freedoms, showing a globe, two books, and the hand and torch from the Statue of Liberty. Pennsylvania Penna Art WPA, created between 1936 and 1941. The four freedoms are freedom of religion, freedom of expression, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.

Daily Thoughts 6/12/2010

Symtio makes a postcard with a picture of a book. On the back is a 16 digit code for digital download. A way to retail ebooks with pictures of them. I wonder if this could be used in libraries with a checkout then an automatic deletion until the next checkout.

I received a copy of Final Exit The Practicalities of Self-Deliverance and Assisted Suicide for the Dying by Derek Humphrey as a complimentary copy for my library at my home address. This was kind of an odd thing to receive as an unsolicited item. It was rather surprising. The organization which sent it was ERGO on 24829 Norris Lane, Junction City, OR 97448. This is the 2010 edition. It is a controversial book both legally and morally. ERGO is Euthanasia Research and Guidance Organization.

On another thought, there is an interesting article on conservative values and libraries called On My Mind Our Conservative Values in American Libraries Magazine. . It is a bit surprising. There seems to be an increase in controversy around libraries as bastions of liberal thinking. I don't think of them that way. Libraries are bastions of free thinking which is not necessarily liberal. I think of libraries as a statement against ignorance.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/11/2010

Front view of a plant sculpture of a green bookworm reading a book with a B and C on it. Photo from Manchester.11 July 2008 (2008-07-11), 15:09:08, Taken by Terry from Wikimedia, Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

Daily Thoughts 6/11/2010

Today, I looked at my stats. I looked at Webmaster Tools to check on search queries related to my blog.

The number one search term which my blog comes up under is Rosie The Riveter. There is a certain irony in this. It is exactly the type of thing which I don't mind being attached to. This is followed by monopoly pieces. I am rather partial to the hat. Then comes Mary Shelley. I do rather like Frankenstein. The internet can be both silly and amazing at times.

The keywords are almost on target. The number one keyword is thoughts followed by book. I do think a lot and read a lot of books. The keywords are not that far off.

I also like to look at Yahoo's Site Explorer. I find it to be more interesting and accurate than most other site exploration functions including the hit counter on my blog. I usually find out about some rather interesting sites that are linked to my blog.

Here are a few that are not in my blogroll. I wonder sometimes if I should include a set of links for non-book related sites in my sidebar. There are a few blogs which follow me very regularly which have other functions than books. Chicago History Journal is where I get the majority of inbound links for my blog. I find it rather interesting. .

Another blog which I enjoy a lot is Cromely. The pictures of gardening, travel and conventions are wonderful. He has some excellent comic book material, material on Star Trek, and a few book reviews. If a blog has a lot of book reviews, but is not purely a book review blog, is it a book review blog. Blogs are very flexible in their content.

There were also a few book blogs which linked to my site in their blogger profile, but not necessarily in their blogroll; Bookish Ruth, , Lexie, , Magdalena ball, , and Sandra .

The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn came in for me to read. This is for me to read for my Readers Advisory 101 class. Occassionally, we have to step out of our normal reading habits and try books which are a bit different, not necessarily our favorite subjects. Reading it would be part of my continuing education as a librarian.

Today, I focused a bit on getting the Bookletters page ready, took one more look at the Suggestion an Item form for our library website, and printed up some flyers for the upcoming poetry program. I also talked to someone about a table they set up in the lobby. They are offering computer classes for adults something which a lot of people have been asking for at the library.

We finally have a new bestsellers page put together from Bookletters and a suggest an item for purchase form up on our website. I have worked a little bit more on evance which is an online sign up form for summer reading. It is the second year we are going to be doing the adult section of the summer reading program.

I also picked up a short paperback called Food Rules An Eaters Manual by Michael Pollan. He is the author of The Omnivore's Dilemma.

I read some of The Viscount Who Loved Me. It is easily one of the most atrocious books I have ever attempted to read. The rakeViscount Bridgerton father dies after being stung by a bee and his love interest reads gossip sheets. It is awful. On the cover of the book are the words USA Tdoay Bestselling Author. It made me sleepy.

I do occassionally read romance titles. I like Elizabeth Lowell and Linnea Sinclair. I am even intrigued by some of the settings in romance, the Harlequin NASCAR romances seem like they would be interesting. We get lots of requests for romance, especially African American romance, Brenda Jackson and Rochelle Alers are asked for a lot. We get a lot of historical romances. Kathleen Woodiwiss is very popular.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Rex Riders by J.P. Carlson

Rex Riders by J.P. Carlson

Rex Riders is a "weird western", a combination of weird tale or science fiction and western story. The story is an adventure story for teenagers, but it can be read by most anybody. It is an attempt to bring back the old fashioned pulp style story with better writing and more historical accuracy. There is plenty of action and a strong sense of old fashioned frontier values in this story.

The descriptions of riding include both horses and dinosaurs. Two of the dinosaurs featured are the tyrannosaurus rex and the triceratops. We move between the setting of the old west in the town of Dos Locos and a dinosaur planet. The setting of the west is described in beautiful detail; ranching, square dancing, country doctors, and small town life.

The story has themes about greed, bravery, loyalty, and taking advantage of peoples weaknesses. The villain D'Alessandro has his ranch destroyed because of his greed and his violent henchman, Cooper comes to a bad end.

J. Califiore is the artist who illustrates the book. He is a comic book artist for both DC and Marvel. Bob Eggleton has a small illustration on the back cover. The illustrations by J. Califiore are very precisely rendered, with lots of action, and clean lines. I like the picture of Zeke Calhoun, the main teenage character riding a t-rex, as well as a picture of a stage coach being rammed by a triceratops.

The one flaw I found was the occassional tendency of the author, J.P. Carlson to tell not show. For example, in one instance, he describes the way a pike is used in logging in the old west. This broke the flow of the story. It might have been better if there was a captioned illustration at this point. On the other hand, there is a lot of very fine detail written into the story like exact descriptions of cowboy instruments, tyrannosaurus rexes eating beef jerky, and a stampede of triceratops.

At the time I read this book on June 8, 2010, there was no website for this book. There also was no availability on Amazon or Barnes and Noble. It was released on May 3, 2010. I picked up an advanced reading copy at Book Expo America. The ISBN for the book is 9780982579633 . It is priced at $19.99 . This is the first book by a new press, Monstrosities, Inc.

Daily Thoughts 6/10/2010

Exlibris of the Załuski Library showing the library's interior, mid-18th century,Etching by Jan Józef Filipowicz, National Library in Warsaw

Daily Thoughts 6/10/2010

I am reading Changeless by Gail Carriger. I very much like the humor and style in this steampunk series with supernatural twist. It mixes, humor, adventure and romance very well. I am already looking forward to Blameless coming out in september 2010.

I looked through the Locus Magazine new arrivals list and put The Affinity Bridge by George Mann on hold. It is a steampunk mystery. I also read throught the New York Times Bestseller list for Business and put Switch How To Change Things When Change is Hard by Chip Heath on hold. I do look at a variety of bestseller lists.

I finished reading Changeless. It was quite entertaining. I will write some more about it later this week. So far, I have finished reading three books this week.

This is a link to the speech by Ron Hogan on Professionalism and Ethics in Blogging presented by Ron Hogan at the Book Blogger Convention.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/9/2010

Miniature painting of a scribe writing at a desk. Found on

Daily Thoughts 6/9/2010

On the way home last night, I read some more of the book Drive by Daniel H. Pink. At this point, the author is talking about the concept of increasing autonomy in the work environment. He is describing how there are less people being put in management positions. He also talks about homesourcing where companies are increasingly hiring people to work at home for routine jobs like customer service and clerical work. Computers can be used from almost anywhere. Another concept in autonomy is the idea of the Results Only Work Environment where some companies like Best Buy allow very flexible work hours in return for a very goal oriented workplace. The final concept in autonomy is encouraging people to experiment for a certain amount of time in their jobs constantly. Google encourages their engineers to spend 20% of their time on their own projects to create new ideas.

I have to get ready for my upcoming class on Readers Advisory 101. I have four fiction titles I am supposed to read. It starts on June 28, 2010.

  • Romance - The Viscount who Loved Me by Julia Quinn
  • Mystery - Bootlegger's Daughter by Margaret Maron
  • Speculative Fiction - Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card
  • Action/Thriller/Suspense - Ice Station by Matt Reilly

The only book which I have already read from the list is Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card.

An article from the New Yorker The Trouble With Recommending Books

Thinking about Web 2.0 in and if I should apply for a press pass... Maybe, I can show that I am a journalist. It would be an interesting aim to get a third press pass because of my blog. I haven't really decided yet. It could be fun.

Just joined the Save Libraries Twibbon on Facebook

This morning on the train, I finished reading Drive on the train. It was a very interesting book. Now, I have two books to review this weekend, Drive and Rex Riders.

Today was an interesting day. We had a call from an author who was interested in coming in. We also had an order meeting today where we discussed our different orders for the month. I have to look at MP3 players as a possible circulating item. With Playaways sometimes the devices don't come back with batteries. We have the Overdrive Media Console on most of our computer workstations.

I also spent some more time working with Bookletters. The page is starting to come together. We are also working on creating a patron requests form for our website. This will hopefully make our website more responsive for patrons.

Tomorrow, I will be looking at the Evance site which is used to manage an adult summer reading program. Hopefully, it should be interesting.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/8/2010

Joseph Conrad, London, March 1... Digital ID: 486398. New York Public Library

Joseph Conrad, 1916

Daily Thoughts 6/8/2010

Today has been a quiet day. I worked a little bit on the Bookletters page, we are almost ready to post the first example to our website which should be interesting. I also worked with a colleague on writing a bookmark for books in Spanish in our collection. I have a couple of periodicals to read, Booklist and Library Journal. I also did a search for books to be sent out on the book mobile. The book mobile stops at the armory which is mainly older folks. I usually get requests for history, biography of actors and politicians, World War II, art, mysteries, and bestselling fiction. There is an occassional request for family sagas.

Last night, I finished reading Rex Riders which was a lot of fun to read. I'll write a review of it later this week. Right now, I am reading Drive The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us. Daniel H. Pink writes a lot about intrinsic motivation; autonomy, mastery, and purpose. Things which don't fit easily into a top down command structure based on managers and workers. He is making an argument that many new jobs that are being created have artistry built into them and don't follow the reward and motivational structure of modern corporations. He also tells us that 18 million Americans are self employed as well as 11 million Americans work from home at least occassionally. This makes the top down command structure not work very well in many jobs. So far, the book is quite interesting.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/7/2010

Central building, cartoons : O... Digital ID: 465329. New York Public Library

Central building, cartoons : Outside of that cowboy book I showed you there ain't a decent book in the whole darn place.

Daily Thoughts 6/7/2010

It is Internet Week here in New York. It should be interesting following it.

Today has been quiet. We had a meeting today focusing on things which need to be done. We are working on the Bookletters page, shifting books in the storage area, making sure the items from Book Expo America are processed as well as some items that were pulled from the book sale to be added to the collection, and working on creating bookmarks for Spanish and Portuguese language books.

I am also thinking about creating a suggested material forms for the web site so patrons can request us to buy books and other items, as well as getting ready for my graphic novels program and poetry program next week. The suggest a materials form is fairly common on library websites. It is a matter of creating an email form in html that is not too complicated.

I read a little bit more of Rex Riders on the train. It is quite entertaining; an alien dinosaur planet, triceratops tearing up the town store, square dances, and cattle ranches. It makes for a good story with plenty of adventure which will appeal to young men of all ages.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Linchpin Are You Indispensable by Seth Godin

Linchpin Are You Indispensable by Seth Godin

I read this book because Ron Hogan at the Book Bloggers Convention on May 28, 2010 used The Seven Abilities of the Linchpin as part of his part of his presentation on professionalism and ethics for blogging. It intrigued me enough to want to pick up the book.

Seth Godin is strongly tied with new media. He has a blog and runs a social network called Squidoo. I recently reviewed another of his books, Purple Cow. He is very familiar with the changing environment of work. He also has a background in book packaging and has produced over 200 books. This makes him very familiar with the world of publishing and associates him with the book trade. This makes some of what he says relevant to libraries.

In one section in the book, he tells us that the publishing world has not caught up with new technology and could face some very serious problems. He is absolutely correct. We are seeing that with newspapers, publishing, and libraries.

Seth Godin is describing a process of becoming less dispensable in the fast changing world of new technology. It requires an ability to accept change, get over fear, and get to done repeatedly. He is describing everyone as being a potential artist. This is a very apt description. People are being required to do more creative work; post to social networking, work on websites, design marketing materials, blog, and other activities associated with new media. This requires a constant, consistent delivery of content in a timely manner. "Getting to done" becomes a necessity in many jobs.

He describes a world without a map. Again, this is perfectly appropriate. I don't think it is because of lack of planning. It has more to do with constantly changing technology, economic uncertainty, and changing workplace values.

The "linchpin" in Seth's book is the person who can deal with change and technology. He is not necessarily a line worker, nor is he a manager. He is the person who has to do the new creative work introduced into many jobs. Seth Godin claims that change has accelerated to the point where the person who just comes in to do their job or to manage people will become commoditized and left behind. The person who can create value will be the person who survives in an increasingly polarized work environment.

There is a sense in this book that the "linchpins" may be sacrificing their lives for their work. Work becomes accelerated to the point where it ceases being human. Sometimes people don't realize that a purpose of technology is to make peoples lives easier. Loving your work is fine, if it does not become all consuming. There should be a bit on burnout in this book. It certainly could create it if people follow this agenda.

The other side of the sacrifice is a new kind of producer of content that is incredibly visible, Seth Godin is among them. Some of them are Cory Doctorow, Ron Hogan, and Chris Brogan. These people have built a personal brand so strong that they do not need to look for work. There is no resume, nor business card. A blog becomes a personal resume and social networks turn into professional contacts. People drive themselves to become rising stars with social capital.

Everything becomes self oriented in the "linchpin" world. You go to the library to learn, use webinars, take open courseware from MIT Open University. There is no employer driving you to take classes or go to seminars. Some people will not like this. It is very hard to tear yourself away from the idea that your employer will provide you with further training. This is happening less and less....

This book is for the driven. It could be a recipe for burnout. If you want to learn a method to stand out, overcome your fear of doing new things, produce consistently, and take a lot of risks this book is for you. This book might not work too well in a traditional corporate setting. It pushes boundaries and challenges many ideas in management thinking.

The layout of this book is very readable, there is a lot of white space on the pages, the headers break up the text well, and it flows easily from page to page. The diagrams are incredibly simple, a middle schooler could understand them. The bibliography at the back of the book is a very nice reading list. I am considering reading The Rise of the Creative Class by Richard Florida from the bibliography. There was no index and no notes to the content.

Daily Thoughst 6/6/2010

Jan. 9, 1854, Astor Library op... Digital ID: 805996. New York Public Library

"This library open every other Monday from 9:58 A.M. to 10 A.M." Printed on border: "From 'Life,' January 7, 1892." Mid-Manhattan Picture Collection / New York City -- New York Public Library "Jan. 9, 1854, Astor Library opened."

Daily Thoughts 6/6/2010

I am looking at the American Library Association Advocacy University. It is kind of interesting to look at. A lot of it is about how to put your best foot forward, be nice to patrons, and ask them to support the library.

Started reading a book called Rex Riders by J.P. Carlson, it is a weird western which is not that common to find written for young adults. It is the first title by a new press called Monstrosities Books. I picked up an advanced reading copy of it at Book Expo America. I rather like the interior illustrations by J. Calafiore who draws for Marvel comics.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/5/2010

The editorial staff of the New... Digital ID: 1109481. New York Public Library

The editorial staff of the New York Herald in 1860 (from a photograph by Brady) : John Ryan, art critic, John Bonner, money editor, Frederick Hudson, managing editor, Dr. George B.[?] Wallis, loader writer, James Gordon Bennett, proprietor, J. S. Thrasher, statistical editor, James Gordon Bennett, Jr., aged 17, E. G. P. Wilkins, dramatic critic.

Daily Thoughts 6/5/2010

The book Drive The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink came in for me to read. I think it will be a nice followup to Linchpin by Seth Godin. Linchpin challenges the traditional ideal of work as a factory with people as cogs. He is telling us that this mindset no longer works. People need to have some satisfaction in what they do as well as artistic and creative input. He is describing the emotional process of creating value for a company and an employee.

I spent some time working on a bookmark this morning as well as adding some more content to the Bookletters page which we are working on for our website. I also helped a little bit with shifting in the storage area.

The book sale was ongoing today. I had some more coffee and a few cookies and looked at the books. A few dealers came in to look at the books. When the Friends of the Library are done, someone from the hospital is coming by to look at what is leftover. They want to have some books for people in the hospital to read. Also, one of the middle school librarians is coming to look at the leftover childrens books. Finally, when this is done, we have a company that will take the rest of the remaining books.

Today was quiet, predictable, and pleasant. It went very smoothly.

I read some more of Seth Godin's Linchpin. It is very easy to identify with him in the literary sense. He reads Cory Doctorow's blog which is something I do. He also was a book packager at the start of his career. Seth Godin says he worked on creating over 200 different books. This shows in the simple, smooth, easy to follow layout in the books he writes. I like the bibliography in the back of the book which does not follow the traditional bibliographic format. It is title, author, and a short summary of what the book is about.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Daily Thoughts 6/4/2010

Château de Chantilly, Oise, Picardie, France. Le cabinet des Livres. 29 August 2008(2008-08-29), Tango7174, Gnu Free Documentation License 1.2, From Wikimedia

Daily Thoughts 6/4/2010

Book Blogger Convention, Content, Comraderie, and Cake . I like Shelf Awareness, I subscribe to the email newsletter. They often have nice daily recommendations of books to read and summations about authors and other people in the book trade.

I was at this panel at Book Expo America, BEA Librarians Shout It Out. It was excellent.

Book and Bake Sale

It is book and bake sale time at the library. The Friends of the Library are selling coffee, cake, and books in the community room. It has a pleasant genteel feel to it. They are also running the sale on Saturday. They are raffling off an icecream maker. They also have the petition out to keep the library open. A retired children's librarian who is part of the Firends of the Library helps run the sale.

There are piles of books on the tables, pleasant people to talk to, and lots and lots of books. In addition there are a lot of audiobooks. The crowd is mostly older ladies. Eventually, the book dealers will show up to look at the books, usually at the end of the show. Some will be asking to take away all the books that did not sell at a discount.

It is a genteel kind of thing to do. There were a lot of the regulars who went to the book sale. Several regular library patrons and even a few people who lived across the street from the library came to the book sale.

I spent some time during lunch looking over the books on the tables; self help, sports, fiction, art, religion, childrens books, audiobooks and general nonfiction. It was nice talking to people who wandered in for a few minutes. Usually all of the librarians at some point go down to the booksale to look around say hello to the Friends of the Library, look at the books, and say hello to people. The cookies were tasty. I'll get some coffee tomorrow.

Library book sales are generally good public relations. They sell books inexpensively which we would not necessarily add to the collection.

Everyday Things

I spent some time looking at the displays. I also spent some time looking at Bookletters this morning talking to our representative about layout. I am working on creating another bookmark, this time for Latino American authors.

On the train home, I read some of Linchpin Are You Indispensable? by Seth Godin. It is about how work is changing. He is describing how the world of work is changing so fast that it is necessary to have people comfortable changing things as part of organizations. People who are creative, artistic, and can find solutions in addition to managers and workers. Things are changing so fast that it is hard to keep up with things at times.