Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Two Years of Letters to a Young Librarian

Can you believe it? LtaYL is two years old! Two years old and going strong - I still have plenty to say, and plenty of you listening. To celebrate this anniversary, and to thank you for continuing to read, I'm going to have another contest. Just like last year, it's about...


You will win a donation in your name to a book- or library-based charity/entity of your choosing. The amount will vary depending on whether you want me to make a cash donation or buy an actual book (there will be an upper limit - I am a librarian, after all, not a bazillionaire). The beneficiary can be the library where you work, your MLIS alma mater, First Book, etc.

To enter, you must, before midnight on June 17, 2013 (EDT), leave a comment on this post in which you:
  1. ...give me feedback about the blog. What's your favorite thing about LtaYL? Your least favorite? Is there someone who you really want me to get for a guest post? A topic you haven't seen me cover yet? A topic that has been covered, but for which you'd like an update? So long as it's constructive feedback, it counts.
  2. ...let me know how to get in touch with you. I'd prefer an email address, but a Twitter handle or a Google+ link will work as well if you don't want to advertise your email address publicly.
The rest of the rules are simple:
  • One entry per person.
  • The winner will be selected, as randomly as I can manage, from all entries.
  • I reserve the right to tweak the rules as necessary.
Once I've picked the winner, I will contact him/her for details of the charity. After that, I'll announce the winner.

Now it's your turn. How can I improve this blog? What should I never change?

I'd write this blog, no matter what, but it's so much nicer knowing that there are people actually reading it.


  1. As a new librarian, I really enjoy reading this blog. It is relevant, and I like the informal tone/approach. It makes the content very approachable. I also like the use of and variety of guest posts, which contributes to a greater sense of community. My only suggestion might be to include more technical services and/or digital libraries posts.

    1. I hadn't noticed the bias towards public services before now, but I can see it. In my defense, as a public services person, I tend to gravitate towards other public services people (and likewise).

      I'll try to remedy these gaps. Thanks for the feedback.

  2. Laurie M-

    I enjoy reading this blog because it's so down to earth and honest. I'm graduating with my MLIS in August but I have been working in libraries since high school. Much of what is discussed is true yet discussed in a professional manner. I find I relate to a lot of what is posted. I would love to see how some aspects of customer services are handled. Example - grouchy patrons or issues with Outreach. As much as I love hearing about the positives of libraries, having librarians discuss the cons of the day to day and how issues are solved is a wonderful way to improve libraries and upstart ideas. lauriemann09@gmail.com

    1. I must have done a better job of covering my snark than I thought I did. :-)

  3. I love your blog, I am not a young librarian nor a new one, I am 21 years since graduating and over 13 years in this post! What I get out of your blog is that sense of wonder with just a hint or realism. In library school you are going to change the world, make it a better place! Then life happens and you learn that the 'bosses' count issues and not interested in limited quality returns that they cant quantify. Your low down on the pecking order and some folks higher only want to hear 'how high' when they speak to you. But we can make changes, we do make the world better with our quiet and hard working jobs. I would love a guest post by the likes of Ned Potter, or Ian Clarke who both have clear views of what we should be doing as librarians, that combined with your own look at life would be great :-). Some topics need revisiting, you never run out of things about advocacy, and how to do you job and not become the gofor! My biggest issue is what is my job and what do I do! very different things at times that I am trying to make meet again for my own sanity.
    Also a what next bitty and a look at chartership and the future and the changes that are due to be rolled out in the Umbrella13, which sound very scary and new and may be better than the current paper driven system, but that is just me, you may think differently.
    I have been following your blog almost as long as you have been writing it, I have recommeded it and pointed it out to my mentees, I like that not every post is of use to me, I often still look and learn more that way.
    Keep up the good work, I am not writing for the donation but rather to show support and in response of specific questions.