Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Unfortunately, you have probably noticed that Canvas has down. I have all my files saved on my master profile on Canvas so I am unable to email you all the rubric and paper assignment. Because of this I will put an extension on the paper, so far it will be a day (so the paper is now due Monday at midnight), but if the outage is longer I will add on more days. This is very frustrating, I hope the site is up soon. I'm so sorry for the inconvenience!
Monday, February 27, 2017
So, due by the end of this week:
1. Special Topic Paper
2. Women's Lives and Relationships Annotations:
Can't wait to read your papers - as always let me know if you have any questions!
Monday, February 20, 2017
Some of you know that I am a pretty big science fiction fan. I have a couple of resources available that I want to post on here - I know I put a lot of reading in the syllabus for this week so I didn't want to add any more required reading. But if you are one of those people who has never been able to "get into" science fiction, I highly suggest reading this article by Jo Walton. In it, she talks about SF reading protocols, or, how people who read science fiction read with a learned set of skills that people who did not grow up reading science fiction may not have. And here is a super-fun resource to share with patrons, it takes the NPR top one hundred SF and fantasy books voted on by listeners a couple of years ago and turns it into a flowchart.
Also, I want to remind you to be commenting on your classmate's blogs. Class participation is a huge chunk of your grade and there are a handful of you that have yet to leave any comments. Everyone should be commenting 3 to 5 times a week at least.
Due by the end of this week:
Science Fiction and Mystery Annotations (practically the entire class is doing one or the other so I'm not going to put individual names here)
For our prompt this week, I want you to think about fake memoirs, author mills, and celebrity inspired book clubs. Basically write a readers' response to one of the articles you are reading for this week (see syllabus or links in this post for readings) - or talk about a time when a book or author that made headlines affected you personally or your work.
Monday, February 13, 2017
Remember, by the end of this week I will need your:
- Prompt Responses
- Romance, Gentle Reads, and Horror Annotations
This week, we are doing Horror, Gentle Reads, and Romance. As strange as the three of these seem to pair together, they actually go very well as all three genres are designed to elicit strong emotions on behalf of the reader. Please review the PowerPoint in the Week 6 file on Canvas, and let me know if you have any questions.
We are also discussing integrated advisory this week. The concept behind integrated advisory is very simple: it's using forms of media other than books in your advisory. For example, if someone wants to get back into reading but they haven't read too much, you could ask what type of television shows or movies they like, or what kinds of games they like to play. The opposite works as well; I have nearly as many people ask me for movie suggestions as I do book suggestions. And I rarely watch movies, so I have to use sources - and these are not always as easy to find. With reluctant readers, having this knowledge and ability is even more valuable.
I chose to share the romance chapter with you from the book Integrated Advisory, because they do a great job talking about some of the many romance subgenres. However they do fall a bit short in suggesting that there aren't any games for romance readers - that is patently ridiculous. The huge surge in casual gaming is largely due to the same people who read romance novels; people who want a quick, easy, rewarding, and fun diversion. If you go to Big Fish Games or many other casual gaming sites you will find many, many games where the motivation is romance. Also, many romance authors have already put their spin on games - Marjorie M. Liu did years ago with one of her first titles, Tiger Eye. Many indie games have embraced romance as a narrative device. The huge narrative hit Gone Home from 2013 is a sweet teen romance that has won a ton of awards. As libraries expand their offerings to include games and other media, we need to be aware of the possibilities that integrated advisory offers us. Steam, a cloud-based game media service (kind of like an iTunes for games) has very recently introduced tags into their search features. Library Journal includes game recommendations quite often in their RA articles now.
The following students are doing annotations on gentle reads:
The following students are doing annotations on horror:
- Bussie, Robert
- Carter, Chaise
- Darnell, Jennifer
- Mueller, Lisa
- Nowak, Melissa
- Noyes, Jonathon
- Schoonaert, Rachael
- Slater, Taylor
- Yergin, Jenny
- Young, Brandi
- Zimmerman, Claudia
The following students are doing annotations on romance:
Monday, February 6, 2017
I have posted two more documents in the week five files. One is two reviews of an ebook only romantic suspense novel, one from a blog and one from amazon. Look over the reviews - do you feel they are both reliable? How likely would you be to buy this book for your library? Is this ebook even romantic suspense?
The other document contains some reviews of Angela's Ashes, by Frank McCourt, an incredibly popular memoir. These reviews are all from professional publications, feel free to find more on your own I just nabbed a few from the Book Review Digest database for you. How do these reviews make you feel about the possibility of adding Angela's Ashes to your collection?
Do you think it's fair that one type of book is reviewed to death and other types of books get little to no coverage? How does this affect a library's collection? And how do you feel about review sources that won't print negative content? Do you think that's appropriate? If you buy for your library, how often do you use reviews to make your decisions? If not, how do you feel about reviews for personal reading, and what are some of your favorite review sources?
Personally, I love to read reviews, but usually the shorter the better. If it's too long I feel like I might as well just read the book. When I used to buy, I loved RT Reviews - it's very genre heavy but that's what everyone read where I was. For fun, I subscribe to Locus magazine and I love their science fiction and fantasy reviews, and for romance you can't go wrong with Smart Bitches Trashy Books. I flip through Library Journal and Publishers Weekly to keep myself up to date on what is coming out.
Thanks folks, I look forward to reading your prompt responses!
Due by the end of this week:
Adventure & Romantic Suspense Annotations
A Kirkus-style review of a book you loved or hated
For this week, we are reading about the Adventure and Romantic Suspense and about book reviews. I have posted a PowerPoint about the two genres in Canvas files. These are very fun genres that are really popular right now so please make sure to read those chapters in your textbook!
For the book review reading I have asked you to look over several different book review websites and write a Kirkus-style review. Kirkus has two things that make it stand out from other review sources - first, it is anonymous. This means that an aspiring writer can publish a bad review without alienating a publisher, or a librarian can publish one without angering a popular author. The second thing Kirkus has going for it is format. Kirkus uses a very specific format that allows librarians and booksellers to quickly skim a review and find out if the book is one that they want for their collection. The first sentence or two is always a quick summary of the book, then the middle paragraph is a more thorough summary with criticism, and the last sentence or two sum up the reviewer's feelings about the title. Please go to the Kirkus site or look up some reviews of books you have read in the library databases - many databases provide access to Kirkus, I believe Academic Search Premier is one.
The other PowerPoint in Canvas is about professional reviewing. If you're looking to see your name in print, earn some cash, or just score free books, be sure to check it out. I've been reviewing professionally for a few years and it is very gratifying! I don't always get paid, but I get to see my name in print and I average about 120 free books and audiobooks a year. Plus it's great networking and a great resume booster!
Also, it may seem early, but you might want to start thinking about your midterm assignment. I have asked you to write a paper on a topic related to readers' advisory (please email me the topic for approval prior to writing the paper).
I will post the prompt later this afternoon. The following students have selected this week's genre's: adventure and romantic suspense. Be sure to check out their blogs and comment on their annotations. Remember they have until 10pm on Sunday to have their annotations posted! Also, feel free to comment on your classmate's prompt responses which are also due Sunday night.
Friday, February 3, 2017
I know we're still on week four but if you like to think ahead here are some thoughts for your week nine assignment, observing or participating in a book club (due March 12).
You're not required to to tell anyone at the book discussion that you're a librarian or that your attendance is part of a class, but feel free to if you want. If you've read the book, just discuss the book as you normally would, but if you're just observing take note of the following:
- Who is asking the questions, is there a leader or do people take turns?
- If there is a leader, does the leader answer the questions as well or let the attendees respond first?
- What type of questions are asked? Any involving just yes or no answers?
- Do all attendees actively participate?
- Do any attendees swoop in and steal all the spotlight?
- What is the atmosphere of the discussion, where is it taking place at?
- Are snacks or drinks provided?
- What types of books does this book club normally discuss?