Love your Library Month

Love Your Library Month

Love your Library Month

Love your Library Month

February is Love Your Library Month, and if anyone loves her library, it’s me! I love being able to check out new books through the library, and if my library doesn’t have a book that I’m looking for or wanting to read, we can get it through Inter-library loan! That means there are hundreds of thousands of resources available through my library. Super!

Speaking of how awesome libraries are, I’ve been asked two questions this week about libraries’ resources. This blog post is devoted to answering the two questions…

Could you have gotten as much out of four years in the public library as you got out of college?

I earned my Bachelor of Arts degree from Murray State University, so I have a pretty good idea of what four years of college can give you in terms of education and training. I feel that I learned a lot in the four years at Murray State; they really want their students to learn as much as possible. I also visited their libraries during my stay, and I really enjoyed perusing their collection and using ILLiad for resources that other libraries could share.

That compared with the experience at my local public library is definitely different. The purpose of the public library is a little different as well from a university or college. For example, university (and its libraries) are more supportive of education and information. My local public library is devoted to more than just education; it also has the purposes of entertainment and recreation. I also feel that my local public library is more devoted to entertainment than education, and that is because its guests are focused on computers and reading the newest, best-selling fiction.

I think the best way to decide the answer to this question is to have a comparison of what they offer…

University (4 years of college)

  • Math, English, Science, Art, Humanities, Social Science, Technology classes
  • Career Services (Resume and Job Application assistance, Career Guidance)
  • Computer labs
  • Library with Inter-library loan services
  • Arts programs (plays, musicals, concerts)
  • Fitness center

Public Library

  • Technology, Art, Humanities classes and / or programs
  • Resume and Job Application assistance
  • Computer labs
  • Maker-space labs
  • Library with Inter-library loan services

Do they offer the same things? No. There are large differences between a four-year degree and a public library. The offerings that a public library contain are usually shorter-term and smaller than a university or four-year college have. However, the price difference is HUGE. Public libraries often make their programs and classes free and open to all, while the four-year college is much more expensive.

Therefore, to me, it all depends on a person’s budget. I would not have skipped out on my college experience, but my learning experiences do not have to end with my four years of college. It can continue at the public library. Which would I be able to get more out of: a four-year degree or the public library? I would have to say that I would get more out of the degree because it can land me with a professional job, but the public library will help me continue growing as a professional. Ultimately, I would not go without either option because they both have value.

What would you do with a year in the public library now?

I currently check out professional development resources and books on my “To Read” list via my public library. Because I work at my public library, I am in charge of some of the library’s programs; therefore, I also attend library programs. I also have taught computer classes at the library.

With a year at my public library, I would attend cooking demonstrations, extend my education and continue learning, read the newest fiction (especially, the mysteries and YA books), and create something new with some of the art and craft classes.

All in all, this is a great time to Love Your Library!

Page 365 of 365 – The New Year is Upon Us

Happy New Year 2015!

Happy New Year 2015!

This year has gone by quickly. We have seen many things in the world of libraries, books, technology, and in general the world. This year, I have taken a larger leadership role at the library, and yet, I still have a long way to go before I make it to finding the right fit.

  • This year, 1838 free webinars were shared.
  • I read 321 books. (My goal was 100 books via Challenge.)
  • 3,621 visitors viewed this website 5,988 times; they also liked the blog posts 24 times and commented 23 times.
  • People from 80 countries around the world visited the blog.

All in all, thank you very much for visiting and using my blog. I hope you find the calendar of free webinars helpful. Happy New Year!

Facebook, Libraries, and the Fear of Losing Fans

Facebook, Libraries, and the Fear of Losing Fans

What will Facebook’s new changes do to the outreach of library marketing in 2015? How can we improve our library’s reach to the community?

I’ve noticed a lack of interest from fans on our library’s Facebook page, which has sparked an interest in Library Facebook page best practices. On top of that, Facebook has recently announced that changes are coming in January 2015. Facebook pages will be penalized for too many promotional posts, and businesses that market on Facebook will have to buy ads instead of using Facebook to advertise for free. This has spurred many questions, including: How will it affect libraries? The truth is, we won’t know until after a few months of analyzing the difference between past and future statistics.

Therefore, the only solution as of now is to create posts with interesting and valuable information.

Ideas for your Facebook posts…

  • Memes
  • Pictures of your library patrons at programs (get permission)
  • Videos of programs and your library’s mission and messages
  • News
  • Tips on how patrons can find information easier
  • Staff member introductions
  • Ask your fans and patrons questions about what they like to read, watch, listen to, do

If you’re like me and are still looking for information on how to improve your library’s Facebook page, here are some resources and reads that I’ve found so far.

Do you have any comments, tips and tricks, or resources that you would like to share? Please do! Or you can start a conversation with me on Twitter (@sarahderinger88), and find me on Facebook ( I’m looking forward to hearing what you have to say.

Happy Book Lover’s Day!

Book Lover's Day

Today is Book Lover’s Day. I love books, and I love reading. Of course, that’s no surprise to anyone, especially those connected to me on or who visit the library on Fridays when we get our ILL shipment.

So what is it that has captured so many people, including myself, in a book? Well, take a look at these quotes from to find an answer…

I love books; my suitcases are always full of them. Books and shoes. I read when I am sad, when I am happy, when I am nervous. My favourite British author is Jane Austen, and my favourite American one is John O’Hara.

Carolina Herrera

I love books where you feel you’re having a romance with the writer.

Joseph O’Neill

I love my job, and I love books. I read anything, including cereal boxes. I care deeply about what people think of my books, and I memorize my reviews. I love to hear from my readers.

Lisa Scottoline

I don’t own a Kindle, no. I love books, they are beautiful objects.

John Banville

I love old books. They tell you stories about their use. You can see where the fingerprints touched the pages as they held the book open. You can see how long they lingered on each page by the finger stains.

Jack Bowman

A love of books, of holding a book, turning its pages, looking at its pictures, and living its fascinating stories goes hand-in-hand with a love of learning.

Laura Bush

So why do you love books? Which books do you love? Celebrate Book Lover’s Day today by reading a good book, and comment below or tweet me (@sarahderinger88) to share your favorite books.

The Librarian’s Desk: Wednesday, October 1, 2014 edition

I thought I’d give you a quick look at my reading list by sharing with you what books are on my desk right now. I haven’t finished these books as of yet and therefore can and am not telling you that these are great books. They might be great books, and most of what I read has been reviewed by other people. Therefore, I say to you approach these books with the intent of reading them, but with caution.

For more on what I’ve been reading, check out my GoodReads profile!

Teen Advisory Programs – The Other Friends Group to Your Library

Teen Advisory Board

Teen Advisory Board

In July, I wrote about the Friends group, the library’s secret weapon. Today, I’d like to cover a group that helps you connect with young adults at your library and in your community. The Teen Advisory Board (TAB), also known as Teens of the Library, can help advise you of what books teens are reading, what’s new in the teen world, and how to connect with more and more teens in the community. While the young adult crowd typically gets pushed aside or shushed often in libraries, your TAB is a group that should not be shushed.

In my experience, TAB groups are extremely helpful. But the teens that consist of the group are usually extremely busy with school work and after-school activities. Therefore, TAB meetings may be the last thing on their minds. Or they may spend much of the TAB meeting socializing with other members rather than staying on topic during discussion.

Therefore, here are some ideas to use with your teen groups:

– Have a snack ready for them. It encourages them to actually come to the meeting.
– Email information to them after the meeting, especially if they haven’t taken notes during the meeting.
– Ask them what they would like to do with their group. How would they like to raise money for the library? What events or programs would make them more likely to use the library?
– Share fliers and event information with your teens to share with their friends.

Here is a look at our teen page at the Paoli Public Library:

What are your ideas for a Teen Advisory Group? Add to the conversation here in the comments or on Twitter by using #TeenAdvisoryBoard.

Working with The Friends of Your Library

Working With the Friends of Your Library

Working With the Friends of Your Library

Friends of the Library groups are a libraries’ secret weapon – one that fights against poor economic conditions, advocates for the library’s mission, and calls the community to action when the library faces scrutiny or misjudgment. Members of a Friends of the Library group may include teachers, former librarians, advocates for education, or those who just love to read. Each type of member in your friends group is an invaluable opportunity to reach out to your community in unexpected ways. Here are a few tips to work with your Friends of the Library

  1. Tell them what you need and why. Communication is key in any personal or professional relationship, and dealing with your friends of the library is no different. The Friends are there to help the library raise awareness about key issues in the library and help find funding in unconventional ways. When you communicate with them about happenings in the library, the Friends won’t feel like an ATM for the library; they’ll feel needed and appreciated for what they do. This in turn will help them want to be available for assisting the library.
  2. Listen to their advice. Sometimes, the Library Board, members of the community, and the Friends can throw many new items onto your “work plate.” You may feel that you’re so busy that you cannot handle another piece of work to do, but if you listen to the Friends, they may be able to give you ideas on how to manage your work load more efficiently or they can help you completely change the path in which your library is headed.
  3. Share the results of your library’s programs, circulation, and other statistics with the Friends. Why? The Friends can share that information with potential funders and use it to request funding. They can also use the information to come up with new ideas in which to improve the library. The possibilities are endless when you share how well your library is doing with your Friends. When you share the statistics with the Friends, they can also share the facts when the library faces scrutiny or misjudgment.
  4. Invite the Friends to help with programs and events at the library. If your summer reading program is low on volunteers, ask the Friends if they could spare a few hours to help out. If they have time, they’ll most likely help. Or they might know of someone else who can help.
  5. Thank your Friends for all the work they do. Appreciation and gratitude go a long way. Hold a year-end banquet for the Friends and the Library Board as a way to thank them for all their hard work; it can also help bridge relationships between the Board and Friends, helping them to work together. Send out thank you cards to the Friends if they’ve helped with a program or an event. Give out small gift cards to local restaurants. Any little bit of thanks helps the Friends know how much they’re appreciated.

Use the library’s secret weapon, and you’ll make lifelong Friends!