Library Storytime

Summer Library Challenge

I came across a Library User Quiz from the Pew Research Internet Project today while I was wandering through my Facebook Interest Lists.  I am, of course, a Library Lover.

My love of libraries started very early, in school.  Since I grew up in a military family, I moved around quite a bit.  I was also naturally shy.  So, I spent most of my time reading.  The library at each school I attended over the years became my place of comfort and discovery.  I would check out as many books as I was allowed and devour them, and my favorite days were when the class would go to the library for any reason.

When I got old enough to go places on my own, I would go to the public library if it was within walking distance.  I would spend hours in a chair, no matter how uncomfortable, reading the interesting looking books I had come across while wandering the shelves.  This was how I discovered most of my all time favorite books, including The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, The Eyes of the Dragon as well as The Dark Tower series by Stephen King, and Matilda by Roald Dahl.

I also remember the first time I learned to use the public library’s new computerized card catalogue.  I had already fallen in love with computers thanks to the game Oregon Trail, but the ease of finding books with just a few keystrokes had me glued to the screen searching for everything I could think of, just to see the results.  I would write down the call numbers and then go on a hunt to see if I could find all those books.  It’s almost as if I didn’t believe the computer would direct me to the right place until I saw the books there on the shelf exactly where the computer said they would be.

Though I remember using and mastering the original card catalogue, I don’t miss it, especially now that most libraries have their catalogue’s online.  I no longer have to wait impatiently in line to use one of the library’s two or three computers to find what I’m looking for.  I can search to my heart’s content from the comfort of my home, and with the increasing availability of e-books, I might not even have to leave my apartment if I don’t want to.

When I want to get out, besides books stores, the library is where I’m likely to go.  My university’s library is one of the main reasons I chose to apply.  It’s seven stories, each the size of a football field.  I’ve spent entire days there, sometimes to do research, sometimes to hideaway in one of the chairs and just read, and sometimes just to get on the internet.  It’s my first go-to whenever I’m looking for anything.  I can’t wait till the Fall semester starts!

Library Discovery

Summer Library Challenge

I haven’t discovered anything new about my library this week that I haven’t already written about.  I did, however, recently start reading The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley, and that got me interested in the truth behind the legend of Arthur.  So I made use of the library’s virtual section and downloaded a book on the subject.

I wish I had more to write about my library, but I just don’t.  That’s a little bit disappointing since I thought that surely the public library in a large city like Austin would have more to offer.  I know they probably don’t have the kind of money that my university has, so I really can’t compare the two libraries, but I’m really missing my school’s library right now.  Luckily the Fall semester isn’t too far away and that will justify making the hour drive.  I also have access to their e-books without driving, so at least there’s that.

Library Social

Summer Library Challenge

I checked Facebook for the Austin Public Library, and sure enough they have a page.  While looking at a few of the most recent posts, I learned something new: in addition to e-books, digital comic books and graphic novels are also available!

I don’t currently have Twitter simply because I find it to be a gigantic rabbit hole to nowhere satisfying.  I wouldn’t even be on Facebook anymore if it weren’t for the ability to create interest lists so that I never have to use the News Feed.

I also checked Youtube, but there were only a few videos and none of them looked even remotely interesting.  At least there is the decent, frequently updated Facebook page.

Summer Library Challenge Survey

Summer Library Challenge

Library Survey

1. What’s the name of your library and how close is it to where you live?

     Austin Public Library.  The closest branch to where I live is about 3 miles away.

2. How frequently do you go to the library?

     Today was my first visit since I moved to Austin.

3. What is the first section you normally go to when you get to the library?

     Usually, in any library, I go straight for whichever section has the book(s) I looked up beforehand.  That’s usually Fiction.

4. Share a link to your library’s web page. How often do you use it and what for?

     Austin Public Library

     So far, I’ve only used this website to look up the address of the nearest branch, but typically I use a library’s website to search for the books I want to read before I head out to the library.

5. Does your library have a summer reading program for your age group? Do you participate and why or why not?

     Yes!  I was a bit surprised to find out there is a Summer Reading Program for Adults.  It started June 1st, and runs until the end of August, and for every five books I read, I can enter to win prizes.  I will be participating.

6. What is one thing you can think of that would make your library better?

     The hours they’re open.  Every branch is closed two days a week, and at least two other days of the week it’s only open for a few hours.

7. What programs have you attended or thought of attending at your library?

     I considered joining one of the many book clubs, but none of them grabbed my interest.  The majority of the other programs are either for kids or writers.

8. What is the best thing about your library?

     The “Virtual Library”, the library’s downloadable materials section.  Since the hours are limited, I’ll probably be “checking out” more e-books than physical books from the local branch.

City Shuts Down Free Library Built By Nine-Year-Old | The Mary Sue


City Shuts Down Free Library Built By Nine-Year-Old | The Mary Sue.

I normally don’t blog about the various things I see during my wanderings on the interwebs, but since I’m participating in the Summer Library Challenge, I couldn’t pass this article up.  I was going to add a poll asking if you think the city is right or not, but I’m pretty sure if you’re following this blog you’re probably biased in favor of the books.

Summer Library Challenge!

Summer Library Challenge

I’m getting started on this late (Kick off was June 1st), but I decided to go ahead and sign up since I recently moved and haven’t been to the local branch of my city’s public library.  I figure this will be a great way to get acquainted with it!

My goals for this challenge are simple: get to know my library.  That means I will not only be visiting my local branch and getting a new library card, but I will also figure out where everything is, play around on the website, learn what resources are available, such as inter-library loans and e-book availability, as well as making sure I understand whatever particular policies there are (late fees, check out limits, etc.).  I will also look for my book club’s selection for July to see if it’s available and then check it out if it is.  I’m also going to do everything I can to catch up with the challenge so far, and I plan on posting about everything I do within the realm of the challenge.  I may or may not post pictures.  We’ll see….

My reason for keeping things simple is due to my very recent job change.  I’ve posted before about how unhappy I was with my previous job, and so the update on that is I was able to find a better job with a higher wage and more benefits!  I’m in training right now, but my schedule will change after I’m done and so I just don’t know how much time I will have to devote to all things books.  I’m really hoping that once I get more settled into a routine I will have more reading time as well as more time to add new “features” to this blog.  I have quite a few ideas!  I’m also welcome to suggestions of what you would like to see, so feel free to comment to your heart’s content! 🙂