What is the purpose of a book? Is it to please the reader? To educate the reader? Challenge? The best books do all three, especially educate and challenge us as readers.
Hattie James Author Archive
Hattie is a writer and researcher living in Boise, Idaho. She has a varied background, including education and journalism. She is a former electronic content manager and analyst for a local government agency. She currently spends many sleepless nights seeking her MBA but always sets aside time to enjoy a good cider. Hattie has participated in NaNoWriMo for eight years. She "won" her first year.
Universities across the country are changing the landscapes of their libraries.
One of the largest centers for sex trafficking in the country is San Diego, where it has turned into a near billion dollar local industry. Because of the city’s role as a hub for sex trafficking, and the chance encounter of one of its librarians, the San Diego Public Library is now working actively to combat sex trafficking.
When deployed overseas, military service members can end up with a lot of downtime on their hands. Many struggle to fill the idle time with activities that contribute to their mental and physical well-being and even further their career aspirations. There is a growing concern about treating service members’ mental health issues when they return from deployment, but how do we contribute to improving or maintaining their mental health while they’re deployed overseas?
.On March 1, 2016, Governor Scott Walker signed Senate Bill 466 into effect, taking a step toward recouping business losses for Wisconsin’s public libraries that tally in the millions. According to a report by WTMJ-TV, Wisconsin library patrons annually fail to return $3 million in taxpayer-owned materials. Instead of encouraging patrons to be more conscientious, however, will this bill do more harm to Wisconsin’s library patronage? With the possible consequences, patrons may look for new options to borrowing materials from a brick-and-mortar library.
Adapt to survive. This simple mantra may be a bit clichéd, but it is thus for a reason: it is a truth, especially in a business. Libraries may be community services, but they are also businesses, or else they couldn’t keep their doors open to serve their communities. They must adapt to survive. This may mean that the library of 2100 will look nothing like the library of today, though today’s library looks very little like the library I visited when I was a child. That library was a central hub in my hometown, serving everyone. There were no computers and no library networks – there were barely interlibrary loans, and I was too young to know what those were.
Harvard Law School has had about two months to work on its newest project, Free the Law. When I read about it in The New York Times, I was of two minds. The book lover in me shed imaginary tears as I read that the spines of nearly all the tomes in the collection were being sliced off to digitize the pages. Yet the former electronic content manager in me cheered at the access that this will grant myriad customers.
Humans are recorders. We’ve been recording things for centuries. We drew everyday life on the insides of caves. We documented the number of livestock we owned. Today, we’ve evolved to journal every aspect of our existence, from the clothes we wear to the food we eat. We are what we eat, and as early as the 1st Century, we were recording what we consumed. For twenty-five years, it was Barbara Ketcham Wheaton’s job to curate the cookbook collection at the Schlesinger Library at Cambridge, Massachusetts’ Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies. For twice that amount of time, she has been feverishly creating a database of all the recipes, ingredients, and cookbooks recorded in Europe and America.
It’s easy to engage young readers. Librarians do it all the time with reading programs and story hours. Yet how can those in the library profession engage older readers? By encouraging them to write their own stories. The month of November is perfect for integrating writing into library literacy programs: it’s National Novel Writing Month!