Posts Tagged ‘ truthbrary ’

all i want for christmas is

Books!   Typical, you might think, unless you’ve known me my whole life.  Just since 2012 new year’s resolutions, have I been truly committing myself to read books widely, deeply  and in desperate seeking to live better to my profession and to communicate more truthfully.  I’ve got a list started of some that I’m really interested in or that have come to me as recommendations.  My hope is to plan more deliberately for my 2013 resolutions.

Here’s the twist —  I suggest, if you are so inclined to buy me a Christmas gift, that instead you actually by yourself a book you’ve really been wanting and lend it to me for Christmas and my 2013 resolutions. Or if you are not inclined to buy me a Christmas gift, please offer a recommendation in the comments.  I’m still refining my preferences, but as the items below may suggest, I do like all kinds of biographies and interesting revelations from science.   I also like photography, information design, a good novel, and in any of these areas — something that will make me laugh.

  1. Brown, Brene (2012). Daring Greatly.
  2. Melton, Glennon (2012). Carry on Warrior.
  3. Sullivan & Sharp (1990). Dashing Kansan. — got it already.
  4. Sister Magdalene. (). Conversations with Children. — got it already.
  5. Egan, Timothy. (2006). The Worst Hard Time.
  6. Eliot, Goerge (188?). Middlemarch: a study of provincial life. — got it already.
  7. Mathis, Ayana (2012).  Twelve Tribes of Hattie.
  8. tbd
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keep ER&L weird

Not sure why I didn’t post this last April, right after the conference.  But in the spirit of just writing and getting it out there, and because ER&L 2013 sessions were just announced, and because I am thinking about ERLs and OE again recently, I am publishing anyway.

My biggest personal takeaway from the  Electronic Resources & Libraries conference this past week  April in Austin TX was this: I’m OK, you’re OK, we’re all OK.  Maybe that seems a strange takeaway, given the state of upheaval we librarians, especially we ERLs, find ourselves.  But it was the message I needed to hear recovering from the week prior where I struggled to recommunicate why this little ol’ ERL might have something intelligent to say on the matter of strategic planning and organizational effectiveness.  Quite similar to the KEEP AUSTIN WEIRD motto of this “little drinking town with a live music problem” , I left affirmed that my passion and experience for information management, strategy, and organizational effectiveness (now!) is not the domain of only upper administrators.  These qualities and experiences are quite common among ERLs.


brutiful truths

When I set up this blog for my MLS capstone, I gave myself permission to seek truth beyond the MLS.  I’ve done that in my tradtionally quiet way.  But I’ve been wrestling a lot lately with how to speak some of that seeking more openly here, and more often.  This post, by one of my favorite truth-speakers has motivated me to get started on this…just a little.

G, I’ve been tweeting about my 2012 resolution to read 12 books this year.  My last book was kind of a cop out, it being an “I Can Read” children’s book of only 63 pages.  But, one of the things your shared truth has taught me is that deep, full, and brutiful truths can be found in the simplest places. So, I’m sharing just two pages (a fair use) in hopes it will encourage you, encourage me, and maybe even get you out to the library and pick up a copy.  Oh yeah, and my kids like it too.

We look brave

Brave Together

Lobel, Arnold. (1971). Dragons and Giants. In Frog and Toad Together pp.43,51. Columbus, OH: Newfield Publications.

truthberry pickings

The interwebs are smiling brightly today, particularly on a few of my very favorite topics: fair use, sensemaking,  workflow analysis, and project management.

First up, Brett Bonfield of ITLWLP .  Fear not the seemingly tired topics of ‘scholarly publishing crisis, e-books, and library core values’ upon which this particular post expounds.  Bonfield gives a most clear, well paced, and relevant discussion, outlining the currently available and ideal purchase/license models in a nifty table and a brief discussion of each.  Local highlight: the State Library of Kansas helped establish the Portability Model.  I do so appreciate well written, and very practical reminders of how we can and do preserve library core principles of fair use and first sale.

I also find Roy Tennant to be an excellent bibliographer of articles both timely and relevant to my work.  A couple from his recent Current Cites update seemed very relevant to things I’ve been presently working on (and to my libraries’ larger strategic directions) – workflow analysis and the next generation ILS (Breeding, 2012) and use of project management in libraries (Horwath, 2012).  See more at:

Finally, how lovely to find sensemaking in the most unexpected places.  Another of my more personal (than professional) favorite blogs, Glennon Melton (of Don’t Carpe Diem fame), explores a third option when faced with difficult communications.  Right!   In her concluding statement…

If she’d never written, or if I’d have fought her back, or ignored her – I’d never have explored my desperate need and insistence upon laughter. I wouldn’t have understood myself the way I do now.

And we wouldn’t understand each other. A crack would remain where now stands a bridge.

…(especially that last line) she alludes to Dervin’s sensemaking while offering an approach for care-full truth-seeking in every encounter.

truthberry pick of the week

And for a super nerdy and way smarter version of my conclusions in that ‘confessions‘ post: 

Brainpicker tweeted Explore’s discovery of the The New York Times’ Annie Murphy Paul explores the neuroscience of your brain on fiction 

(take your pick)

confessions of a truthbrarian

To all the kind friends who have shared nonamerah’s A Girl You Should Date on my fb wall or spread it across the interwebs for the promotion of reading and librarianship, to those who may be reading my blog or following this truthbrarian in hopes of literary comradery, I confess.  I can relate to nonamerah’s post perhaps only in its painful description of my own young dating failures.  I think I was nerdy and pretty enough to attract suitably interesting and intellectual boys, only to disappoint them with a lack of disciplined bookishness.  You see, I am one of those librarians who doesn’t really read a lot of books — mostly nowadays, I claim, because I’m too busy.  But the whole thing has got me thinking about my entire literary past and inspired me to take stock.

Past elementary school, I couldn’t tell you my librarians’ names, and I don’t recall story times or visits to the public library that involved anything more than a place to do homework and have fries at the Hardees next door.  I actually did. not. believe. my college voice professor who told me the library had books with the full English translations for the various language arias I was working on.  “It can’t be that easy!”, I thought.  And since I never recall seeing what might have been a librarian anywhere in that college library, I never followed up to verify this outrageous claim.

What?!  I know!

As a truthbrarian, I’m obviously not proud of this.  And it’s not even that I have trouble reading or that I don’t enjoy it as a pastime. I do!  In fact I boast at home that among the larger tomes in our recently reestablished home library,  I’ve read the largest of them in their entirety. My husband, the main collector for the library, has read some or all of more of the books and is certainly the more read in our family.  Our eldest daughter is not far behind. But I am a late (or perhaps, interrupted) bloomer.

Leo the Late Bloomer, by Robert Kraus and José Aruego

While I don’t remember my parents reading to me at home, I do have fond memories of my elementary school librarian and that library. I can still picture the reading bathtub, where the Judy Blume books were located, and what a big deal it was to have visits by author/illustrator, Tommy de Paola, and also Jose Aruego, who showed us step-by-step how he illustrates animals. Fascinating!  I can also recall my mom supporting our local bookstore and my particularly intense preteen reading spree of the entire Sweet Valley Twins series and Garfield comic books – don’t judge.  I also  loved my church library, but only have 3 solid book memories:

  1. The Giving Tree (and other Silverstein poetry)
  2. Joni, an autobiography of diving accident victim turned artist
  3.  a crazy cartoon book about a boy who got bit by a dog with rabies.

My current reading choices retain this pattern for creative humor, biographies, and a touch of morbidity.  But what I remember having an even greater fascination for in these libraries was the organizational system of the books, the act of checking out books, and wanting very badly to stamp and sort.

Many librarians, of course, share this organizational proclivity. But, I’ve always felt that every other librarian must have always loved books in a way that I never fully grasped.  I now know,  that truthbraries give you more than books.  They give you the ability to seek, discover new things, be curious,  and seek even more.  This has always made me a good problem solver and information organizer/seeker.  But that seeking within books and stories in the traditional sense has been late to bloom in my life.

The problem with lackluster seeking (as opposed to desperate seeking)  in books is not just less reading, but that my bibliography relied almost solely on the recommendations of others.  This, for better or worse, boils down to the company you keep.   My first recommendation I count as a plus. My big sister gave me Catcher in the Rye, which led me to inquire and read the entire Salinger bibliography,  articles about him, and his daughter’s biography of him.  However, in my high school naivety, I once settled on a recommended Danielle Steele novel  for a book report, making me reading adverse for quite some time!  However terrible that reading experience was, though, I see now the silver lining was a new-found appreciation for its opposite —  good writing, and the skill to critically evaluate for it. Today, I love to edit and to write.

I recall one more remarkable recommendation through a senior English reading essay (not really recommended as much as part of the reading requirement of the class).   It was a timed essay exam where I nailed a comparison of themes in the Red Badge of Courage.  I remember being super energized by a  feeling of discovery and impressed with how quickly I organized my ideas on paper.  This probably speaks again for my analytical skill and enjoyment of writing than it does for my love of reading.  But it is certainly connected, and I can see, through nonamerah’s A Girl You Should Date,  how those who have immersed themselves more fully and regularly into reading would develop a self-perpetuating love of it.   I am also totally into the concept there that exposure (through reading) to a variety of both creative and factual stories will only make one a better and more creative thinker, conversationalist,  writer, and even lover.  This truthbrarian seeks all of these  adding mother, friend, and leader. A tall order!

While I’ve got a late start to it (overall and in this late 2012 new year’s post), I have recommitted to the avid reading side of my dear profession.  This new year, I  firmly resolve to a reading regimen and welcome suggestions for its  structure and content.  You can keep up with my #2012resolutions progress by following me (@atruthbrarian ) on twitter.


truthberry picking (to be continued…)

Just a place marker for my post on the berries from ALA Direct this week


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