The Library Connection
The Monthly Newsletter of the Eastern
Shores Library System
Volume 29 Number 9 September 2009
Click here for the Fall 2009 Bookmobile Schedule
Two libraries, Plymouth and Oostburg, have recently welcomed new staff members. Genevieve Guran is the new Youth Services Librarian at Plymouth Public Library. Oostburg Public Library has hired Wendy Urban.
Getting to know Genevieve: After years of
working as an editor, I spent a couple of years working for UW-Extension
and discovered a love for public service.
Eventually I realized that librarianship would be a better fit for
me since it would allow me to combine public service and my passion for
books and reading. I went back to school for my MLIS and completed it,
with an emphasis on youth services, this past May. While working on my
degree, I interned with Milwaukee Public Library and later volunteered
with the Greendale Public Library. At both libraries, I worked primarily
with young people.
As Youth Services Librarian in Plymouth, I plan to
increase the range of programming by offering baby and toddler story times
and programs for middle-school children, in addition to the existing
roster of preschool story times. I also would like to increase
collaboration with area schools. Working with art teachers to present mini
art shows -- complete with an “opening” for families -- is one way I
hope to do that.
I now live in Plymouth with my two daughters, Helena and Charlotte, and our labradoodle, Otto. My husband lives in Milwaukee but hopes to join us in Plymouth soon. My hobbies include practicing yoga, writing, cooking, and reading. I read a lot of children’s and YA fiction, but I do try to squeeze in an occasional “grown up” book.
Getting to know Wendy : Wendy Urban's previous position was at the Sheboygan County Christian High School library as the Media Center Supervisor. Wendy and her family live in Oostburg. Wendy has a BS degrees in Business Management and Human Development from UWGB. She is married to a Sheboygan County Sheriff's Detective and they have three children. Wendy likes doing collage cards/crafts, studying the bible and reading. "Lately I've read the Bone graphic novel series with my son, Blue Balliett's Calder mystery series with my daughter and Dorothy L. Sayers mysteries for myself."
Reflecting on her new role in the public library Wendy states, "It's exciting for me to see so many patrons using our services for gaining knowledge or pleasure reading. This is a great opportunity for me to offer people resources (the internet, research, book searches, etc.) that they didn't know were available and to put the power in their hands to use it themselves. I'd like to see more young people discover all that they can do with BadgerLink, WISCAT and EasiCat and other research resources and take this with them to college and adulthood."
We welcome to both Wendy and Genevieve to Eastern Shores Library System. Look for them at upcoming meetings and get to know them.
Eastern Shores will also be saying goodbye to two librarians. Conrad Reedy of the Kettle Moraine Correctional Institute has retired and Linda Pierschalla of the Oscar Grady Public Library in Saukville will be leaving to head the Whitefish Bay Public Library. We wish both of them the best on their new ventures in life.
Conrad Reedy has contributed almost forty years of library service to the state of Wisconsin. In 1970 he started at the University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh library. He worked there about four years and then transferred to the University of Wisconsin - Green Bay. While there he was part of the first online circulation system for the state.
July 1990 found Conrad working at KMCI. Although Conrad found working at the universities very exciting he found the work at the correctional facility the most satisfying. He felt he made a difference, "working with those who really needed the help". Conrad will be busy doing projects around his Green Bay based home, taking trips, fishing and not worrying about driving to work during our Wisconsin winters.
A goodbye from Linda Pierschalla: It’s with a touch of sadness along with some excitement that I put in my final two weeks as director at the Oscar Grady Public Library in the Eastern Shores Library System. Beginning September 28, I will start as the new director at the Whitefish Bay Public Library and will be working in the Milwaukee County Federated Library System. It’s been a good 6-year experience at Saukville and I give much credit to a hard working, warm and friendly staff of veterans who helped me with the transition when I came from Waukesha Public Library as a reference/government documents librarian. I also have to give a lot of credit to a great library board of trustees who supported my ideas and me when I first came and always wanted to see the library be the best that it can be. The village staff and board of trustees have been wonderful to work with as well. So why am I leaving? I always like a challenge and the Whitefish Bay Library is larger with more resources and more full time staff so I will get an opportunity to use my experience and education in a bigger setting in a larger sized community. I have a Master’s Degree in Library Science along with a Master’s Degree in Management and Organizational Behavior and I am looking forward to more opportunities to use my background.
The member libraries of the Eastern Shores Library System are a great example of cooperation and have a great relationship with one another and I will certainly miss the camaraderie and the friendly faces at our monthly meetings. This system has been a pleasure to be a part of and I look forward to catching up with everyone at future library conferences. If you happen to be in the Whitefish Bay area sometime, stop in the library and say hello!
Children's Librarians Corner
Katie Kiekhaefer, Cedarburg Public Library, Children's Librarian
When it comes to dreaming up programming, librarians
are always creative. We
search high and low, from PUBYAC to librarian blogs, for the most creative
programming options. However,
I found very recently that sometimes it’s the program that’s right in
front of your nose (or right in your story time group) that’s the most
One day, while working with the 3-5-year-old story
time group, a mom asked me if we offered anything for kids going into
kindergarten. She explained
that her family lived in an area of town that didn’t have many kids
which meant her son didn’t know anyone else going to his kindergarten in
the fall. Since Cedarburg has
three public elementary schools, it seemed probable that other parents
might be having the same problem. Thus,
the idea for a kindergarten party was born.
We wanted this party to give children and parents attending a
chance to meet and form connections with each other, but we also wanted to
calm any lurking fears about kindergarten and make the kids excited about
this next big step in their lives.
We held our party a week before school started, on a
Tuesday afternoon, and luckily, the weather cooperated so we could have
the program outside. When the
children arrived, we made them nametags with their school listed.
We read stories about kindergarten, like Countdown to
Kindergarten by Alison McGhee, and we played games like Simon Says,
which encouraged listening and following directions.
At the end of the party, we handed out a snack and a pencil case
with fun erasers and pencils, and let the kids mix and mingle.
We felt the party was a great success and it would seem that those
attending agreed. I recently
had a mom come in and tell me that her son had to draw a picture of one of
his friends for his kindergarten class and the friend he drew was a little
girl in his class that he had first met at our party.
It was a great experience and we hope to make it an annual event.
The Eastern Shores
Library System Board approved the 2010 library system plan and budget at
its meeting in September. The
overall library system expenses for 2010 increases by $40,000 with $35,000
attributed to the increase in the level of reimbursement for libraries
from county library service appropriations.
The system’s expenses increased by $5,000 with most of this
attributed to the repayment of the state trust fund loan for the EasiCat
hardware and software replacement. Library
system staff will receive no wage increases or merit increases in 2010.
The health insurance benefit for employees was modified which
reduced the library system’s payments for health insurance premiums.
The premium increases from 2009 to 2010 ranged from 10% to 18% for
the plans that library system employees choose.
A decrease in state aids of $23,000 affects many of the library
system services, most notably Continuing Education and Internet services.
The library system will take advantage of free or inexpensive
webinars for its Continuing Education program and will require the
libraries to contribute to the additional internet service bandwidth
provided in 2010. Although
there was a 3% increase in the cooperative service fees for member
libraries in 2010, some libraries will actually pay less for library
system services in 2010. This
is due to reductions in the systemwide database subscriptions.
At a recent TAC meeting,
member librarians spoke about the initial discussions they are having with
their municipalities over the 2010 budgets.
Five libraries said it is likely they will be funded the
maintenance of effort level in 2010 (Sheboygan Falls, Saukville,
Sheboygan, Random Lake, and Elkhart Lake).
Other libraries indicated that they may receive the same level of
funding as they did in 2009. Maintenance
of effort funding is one of the requirements for membership in a library
system. Libraries and municipalities which comply with this
requirement remain eligible for the benefits of the library system
services. Those services
funded either by state aids or by the cooperative payments of the member
libraries allow libraries to provide a higher level of service.
Without these services, the library’s residents could lose access
to EasiCat, delivery services, Internet services, and other cooperative
activities or need to replace them at a higher cost.
Ozaukee and Sheboygan
County are currently reviewing their respective county library service
appropriation requests for 2010 as part of their budget process. Ozaukee County’s Administrative Committee asked that there
be a 0% county library service increase from 2009 and the Library System
provided the Committee with that information.
Libraries which provide significant service to Ozaukee County’s
non-libraried residents are visiting the town boards and village boards
and asking them to support the requested 85% reimbursement level of
funding. In Ozaukee County,
we are also waiting to find out if Town of Cedarburg will remain a member
of the Cedarburg Public Library joint library agreement in 2010.
If they choose not to remain a member of the joint library, then
Ozaukee County needs to recalculate the reimbursement of libraries with
the additional use made by Town of Cedarburg residents.
Sheboygan County’s Finance Committee reviewed the 2010 request and recommended the 90% level of reimbursement funding to the County Board.
The Joint Ozaukee
Sheboygan County Library Planning Committee approved its final draft of
its Joint County Library Service Plan for 2011-2015 at the September
meeting. The Committee is
distributing the draft extensively to libraries, library boards, town
boards, village boards, municipal councils, county boards, county
officials, and the public. The
Committee is scheduling the public hearings on the plan for Wednesday,
October 28 at the W.J. Niederkorn Public Library in Port Washington from
6:30 to 7:30 p.m. and on Thursday, October 29 at the Plymouth Public
Library from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. The Committee will meet after the public hearing on October
29 to review the comments received.
The 2011-2015 plan
recommends that both counties will work towards reimbursing libraries at
the 100% level for serving non-libraried residents in the county. Initial steps towards that goal will begin in 2013, with the
reimbursement level set at 91% and then raised by 1% throughout the
remainder of the plan, reaching 93% at the conclusion of the 2015 plan.
The Plan also recommends continuing to fund the bookmobile service
in both counties through the county library tax and to begin a replacement
fund for the vehicle.
The Joint County Library
Service Plan for 2011-2015 will be posted on the ESLS website.
You may access it under the
What's New column on the homepage and from the link
above. It will also be on both the Ozaukee
County and the Sheboygan County websites.
People who cannot attend the public hearing may submit written comments by 5 p.m Tuesday, October 27 by mail to: Joint County Library Planning Committee, c/o Eastern Shores Library System, 4632 S. Taylor Drive, Sheboygan, WI 53081 or by e-mail to: email@example.com
by Kim Dalhaimer, Reference Services Liaison, Mead Public Library
The Top Ten RA Tools
1. NoveList /NoveListPlus (www.ebscohost.com/thisTopic.php?marketID=6&topicID=16) *
The nearest thing thing to the ideal tool, and the one that librarians should be most familiar with, NoveList is a licensed searchable fiction database of over 169,000 titles for readers of all ages from EBSCO Publishing. The newer NoveList Plus is an upgraded version of NoveList, which includes 240,000 titles (170,400) fiction and (68,500) readable nonfiction titles sortable by lexile reading levels with additional customized information on nonfiction as well as all the content from NoveList. A related product is NoveList K-8 Plus for children’s and elementary school librarians. NoveList adds 20,000 new fiction and nonfiction titles annually to these databases.
Developed initially by Duncan Smith and Roger Rohweder, the tool allows searching by author, title, series, Dewey number or class, a variety of traditional index terms, natural language terms or phrases, and Boolean combinations. The latter are particularly important because the elusive appeal and mood factors are more often captured in a reviewer’s or reader’s own words and adjectives, than in more formally assigned subject headings. Sarick calls this ‘the vocabulary of appeal’ (2005). Using the advanced (Boolean) search function, the librarian can also search for reviews that mention when a title is written much like ‘so and so’s book’ or in the same style as ‘so and so’s book’ and then use NOT to exclude the titles by that author. Links to readable title lists appear frequently in the citation field of individual titles. For example, a link at Cody MacFadyen’s Shadow Man leads to a list of other ‘serial-killer’ titles called ‘Hunting Humans.’ These lists can be saved to a personal computer, printed, or e-mailed directly to readers. The ‘Readers’ Advisory’ section of NoveList includes self-help sections to teach librarians how to get started in RA and also how to search NoveList and take advantage of all advanced search features.
A menu with links to customized content, organized by age (adults, teens, older kids, younger kids) includes readalikes, award winners, book discussion guides, feature articles and recommended reads. There is also now a section called ‘Working with Kids’ that includes booktalks, curricular information, ‘Grab-And-Go’ booklists, and ‘Picture Book Extenders.’ Individual title citations in Novelist can also include links to author Web sites and to this value-added content. One of the best value-added features of NoveList is the RA News Newsletter written by David Carr, who has taught RA to MLS students at Rutgers and UNC, Chapel Hill, besides being a voracious reader himself.
NextReads is another resource from NoveList that expands and enhances readers’ advisory service. Hosted on the library site and branded with the library’s logo and name, this service delivers reading selections in more than twenty fiction and nonfiction categories and genres to readers. NextReads also allows staff to create their own newsletters delivering the staff’s expertise directly to their readers. NoveList also allows linking to all major ILS systems, which allows readers to check to see if titles they discover in NoveList are available in a local library’s collection.
2. Reader’s Advisor Online and Genreflecting series (http://rainfo.lu.com/)
The Readers Advisor Online is a subscription Web-based book-finding tool for RA librarians that brings the content of all nineteen genre-specific print titles in Libraries Unlimited’s Genreflecting series together in one place. Other titles are added based on carefully selected RA and genre experts. Besides offering multiple choices for finding readalikes and ‘related reads,’ the database includes fiction and nonfiction, offers printable lists, links to library OPACs, and is informed by advice from top RA experts around the country, such as Diane Herald, the author of Genreflecting. The searchable database is augmented by a blog updated twice a week by Cynthia Orr, formerly head of collection development at the Cleveland Public Library, as well as Readers’ Advisor News, an electronic newsletter with articles about RA for library educators and practitioners.
Despite the existence of the online tool, readers and
librarians alike will enjoy using and browsing the individual
genre-specific print Genreflecting titles, if currency is not an
and Authors and the What Do I Read Next? Series
This website duplicates the previous resources in
some ways, although with far fewer titles (30,000).
What makes it so useful is its Gordonator Precision Search Function
for genre categories, which allows searchers to match many appeal
characteristics such as ‘difficult/unusual lover’ for romance, or
‘spying/terrorism’ for thrillers, etc.
Searchers can even specify the age and gender of the character.
Reviewers are asked to specify certain things about the books they
review. While it does not get
at all reader appeal factors, it includes more than many others for the
titles included in the database. AllReaders
was created by Steve Gordon, a writer himself, who realized ‘that
fiction, unlike non-fiction, was very difficult to classify’ and ‘that
people didn’t just like books, they liked certain plots in books,
certain kinds of characters in books, certain kinds and amounts of action
and dialogue in books.’
Describing itself as ‘a free resource center that
simplifies the search for the best book-related content on the Web,’
BookSpot provides a compendium of news about books, publishing, authors,
and awards, covering all ages, with numerous reviews and a great deal of
genre-specific information. Also
included are links to the book review pages of major U.S. newspapers,
book-related magazines such as BookPage and Bookreporter,
and to book excerpts; this site is enormously useful, though reference
librarians need to be familiar with it to use it well.
The excerpts are particularly important because first paragraphs or
selections of text allow readers to sense the ‘feel’ or ‘frame’ of
a story to get an idea of whether they might like it or not.
This site provides direct access to Publishers Weekly.
After NoveList, BookSpot.com offers more one-stop looking. Links are also provided to related sites in the StartSpot
Calling itself the ‘publisher-librarian connection,’ this blog and Web site founded and owned by Nora Rawlinson, former editor of Publishers Weekly and Library Journal and Fred Ciporen, former publisher of Library Journal and School Library Journal, gives collection development and readers advisory librarians the earliest possible information on books so ‘they can stay ahead of demand’ and give their readers what they want when they want it.
Besides providing news of the publishing
industry, the site keeps librarians up-to-date on lists of bestsellers,
annual ‘best’ lists, award winners, movie tie-ins (worth it for this
alone), book events, and programs. Online publishers’ catalogs and publisher contact
information are linked. The
site contains occasional columns by editors such as Talia Ross Sherer at
Macmillan, as well as reviews from newspapers, weekly magazines such as The
New Yorker and Business Week, or television and radio shows.
Started in 1999 with the intention of providing
‘accurate and reliable information for readers of genre fiction,’ this
subscription site (although the first month is free) offers reviews,
author pseudonyms, series, and upcoming releases information, author Web
sites and a way to buy and sell books to keep track of one’s own
reading. Links are also
provided to other related genre and publisher sites. Among the free offerings here are the complete booklists of
50,000 authors and 200,000 titles. A
keyword search of books about serial killers turned up seven screens of
8. Fiction_L (www.webrary.org/RS/Flmenu.html)
Started by Roberta Johnson while she was still a library school student and working at the Morton Grove Public Library (MGPL) in Illinois, the Fiction_L Listserv is a godsend for many librarians doing RA work because it functions as a communal mind of collegial professional helpers. Many posts begin with ‘I have a patron who…’ followed by further elaboration about desired readalikes, queries about forgotten titles of favorite books, and so on. Although one often wishes that all the list subscribers did better RA interviews before going online, at least frantic reference librarians are guaranteed some level of help very quickly. The list is housed on the MGPL home Web site, along with all the member-generated readalike lists. Beside readalike and title identification assistance, the list members identify and comment on useful tools, discuss titles and discussion guides for library-based reading groups, and even discuss briefly books that they have read. A staple is the ‘Best Books of the Year’ list.
9. AudioFile Magazine (www.audiofilemagazine.com/audiofileplus.html)
The popularity of audiobooks, especially in new downloadable formats, necessitates knowledge of and attention to what is going on in the industry, and there is no place better than the expanded version of AudioFile Magazine online. Besides discussions of industry trends, it also has the ‘golden-voiced’ narrators who read the books, the award winners in various genre and age categories, as well as reviews of current and forthcoming audiobooks; the expanded electronic version offers access to 17,000 archived reviews, links to audiobook publishers, a reference guide to the industry, and search capability.
Based on the work that Joyce Saricks and her staff at the Downer’s Grove Public Library did in their ‘genre studies,’ this book lists key authors and titles in specific genres, explains the appeal of the genre and its subgenres, and provides lists for people coming into or willing to leave a favorite genre to try something new. The book should probably be at every reference desk to assist users and self-training during downtime. Since, at this writing, the book is getting dated – an increasing problem with print tools – a new edition is planned for 2009.
To keep current, one should read genre fan magazines and Web sites specific to one’s interests, e.g., Romantic Times Book Club and the Romance Readers of America Web site (www.rwanational.com) for romance and romance hybrids; Locus and www.sfsite.com/home.htm for science fiction, fantasy, and horror; Deadly Pleasures and cluelass.com for mysteries, especially for awards, features, and author profiles; the feature articles, author interviews and reviews in magazines such as Publishers Weekly (www.publishersweekly.com/) and Book Reporter (http://bookreporter.com/) are helpful, as are Bookmarks (www.bookmarksmagazine.com) and BookPage (http://bookpage.com/), to name just a few.
Since NoveList/EBSCO, ALA Editions, Thompson/Gale and Greenwood/Libraries Unlimited are the main publishers of RA tools, looking at their Web sites for new offerings regularly will help identify both new tools such as NoveList’s readalike lists, and updates of old favorites, such as Libraries Unlimited’s Genreflecting. EarlyWord.com offers information about publishing, awards, bestsellers, the book review sections of major papers, etc., in one place.
Both the Public Library
Association (PLA) and the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA),
divisions of ALA, have standing committees devoted to RA services.
Their publications, Public Libraries from PLA and RUSA
Quarterly from RUSA, usually include articles on RA services and
reviews of tools. Both
divisions offer programs at ALA’s annual and divisional regional
conferences on RA topics. The
other way of staying current at the local level is to use part of every
staff meeting to share new questions (and answers) and new tools with each
other, and to know about and use colleagues’ expertise for
mini-workshops on particular questions about what they know best.
Reprinted with permission from Reference and Information Services in the 21st Century: An Introduction, Second Edition by Kay Ann Cassell and Uma Hiremath. Copyright 2009 Neal-Schuman Publishers. All rights reserved.
Make plans now to attend WAPL 2010 ! Sheboygan's Blue Harbor Resort will be the site of this exciting, informational conference. Set aside the dates of April 28-30 for great programs and great amenities on a Great Lake! With guest rooms at just $105, plus tax the committee hopes to make the conference affordable for everyone. The WAPL Conference Committee, chaired by David Weinhold, will be certain to make the conference worthwhile from a professional standpoint. Check out the WLA webpage at: http://www.wla.lib.wi.us/wapl/conferences/2009/index.htm for more information.
The fourth annual national Friends of Libraries Week, October 18-24, 2009 will be celebrated by at least two libraries in ESLS. Libraries can use the time to creatively promote their group in the community, to raise awareness, and to promote membership. It is also an excellent opportunity for the library and Board of Trustees to recognize the Friends for their help and support.
The Friends of Cedar Grove Public Library is hosting a 65th Anniversary Tea on Saturday, October 17 at 2 p.m. in the community room. A history of the library and the Friends of the Library, compiled by former Director Diana Nett will be on display for the event. The tea is open to the public. Attendees are asked to come with stories about the library to share with the group and their favorite tea cup.
Mead Public Library is sponsoring a recognition brunch to recognize the Friends of Mead Public Library on Wednesday, October 21. In addition to the brunch the Library Board President sends a letter (in the form of a poster) to the Friends thanking them for their support of the library. The poster is displayed at the library entrance.
* Libraries Connect Communities 3: Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study 2008-2009. Check it out at the ALA website.
* The 2009 Consumer Action Handbook is now available. This guide to being a smart shopper is full of helpful tips about preventing identity theft, understanding credit, filing a consumer complaint, and much more. According to the Consumer Action website: In the 2009 edition, you'll find updated information about filing for bankruptcy, finding a lawyer, and planning a funeral, along with many other useful topics.
* An article in the Houston Chronicle talks about a solution for parking problems in heavily used libraries, curbside service.
* Wondering about cell phone coverage in your area? Why some calls you make to customers just have terrible reception? Check out Mobiledia where you can "search for the best carrier in your area. And with our graphical tower location search, users can pinpoint nearby tower locations. Even to the exact rooftop with satellite imagery and the help of Google Maps."
* Be sure to check out the informational opportunities on the CCBC calendar .