The Unclassifiable Library Remix

Friday, May 25, 2007

Summer Reading Program 2007

Remember what it was like when you were a little kid and your library had summer reading contests? I participated in many over the years, including the Virginia Beach Public Library's program every year in junior high and high school. I especially loved the prizes - which were more books! For every book you wrote a review of you got a free book, as well as for reading a book in each subject category, and for completing certain numbers of books. I have fond memories of trying to out-read my brother.

Well, thankfully those years are not completely over. An online group of librarians have been hosting an online summer reading program for the past several years. I haven't participated before, but am going to this year. All you have to do is set yourself a reading goal, and write little reviews of what you are reading. You don't have to have your own blog to participate, as your reviews can be posted to the Summer Reading Program directly.

I'm really excited, and hope I can get lots of summer reading in with this motivation. I am setting a goal of ten books, and will post my reviews here.

If you are interested in joining us or would like to see the reviews already completed to get some summer reading ideas, you can find more information at:

Friday, May 18, 2007

Learning Css and Other Things I Did This Week

Since I spent so much time last week doing managerial paperwork, I spent a lot of this week catching up on some of my own work.

I spent a great deal of time finalizing changes to our new ILLiad 7.2 web pages. Our old ILLiad web pages were pretty much straight out of the box, so I enjoyed getting these new pages customized. One challenge, was that the new pages are controlled by cascading style sheets (css) which I was much less familiar with than straight html. Luckily, there was a librarian here who helped me out with a lot of the css and saved me hours and hours of work. And other than adding a few blocks of text to the FAQ, those bad boys are now done.

I was able to make progress in implementing Odyssey - which is now sending and receiving. Still having some problems with patron email and Odyssey/Ariel communications, but we've made major progress.

Our inventory scanning was finally completed!! YAY!! I still have beaucoup inventory reports to process though, so I know what I'll be doing when I'm working this weekend. And even in the midst of finishing inventory, we were able to begin carting books up for our shifting project to begin next week when our new shelving will (hopefully) arrive.

And people think we're less busy in the summer. ;)

Friday, May 11, 2007

So Busy...

...staff evaluations...

...staff work plans for the upcoming year...

...major changes to job descriptions...department overhaul...

...adding new document delivery services... much writing... glad it's Friday...

Friday, May 04, 2007

The Semester's Over?

I just can't believe that it's already the end of the semester! Graduation is Saturday and while several legacy student assistants have graduated over the past couple of years, the first student that I hired after beginning work at the Library is graduating this year. It makes me realize just how long I've been here. The time has just flown by, which you don't realize in the day to day flurry of activities that can at times seem unending.

So surrounded by the stacks and carts of returned books, the flurry of clearing patron records, and the end of the semester rush of meetings and social events, I am pausing just a moment to reflect on the larger picture - to appreciate what has been accomplished in that time. We've upgraded three major software systems, had numerous changes to policies and procedures, overhauled job descriptions, added a position, hired another individual, developed a student worker training program, conducted the first inventory in twelve years, and added circulating library equipment to the long list of tasks we already had to keep an Access Services department running smoothly. My staff have been patient, flexible, and worth their weight in gold through all of these changes. (If only I could pay them that way.)

So much was accomplished and at times it seemed grueling and the hours long. But with my first student graduating I am taken by surprise that not only is the semester over, but that now looking back those long hours seem shorter and seeing the results makes them more meaningful and less backbreaking. So while I am at graduation Saturday, I will take the time to appreciate the past several years and refresh myself for the hours ahead.