We have been receiving some new books. Check back often for updates!
It’s Here! It’s Here! We are getting the hang of the ebooks and audiobooks that we have available to us via OverDrive. If you are ready to try it out (bear with us as we are still learning too but will answer questions) many androids, ereaders, iPads, phones and other devices have an OverDrive app for you to download.
You can start by clicking on the “download audiobooks & eBooks” link to the right. This new screen gives you lots of options! At the top of the screen is a tool bar listing “Menu”, “Account”, “Help” and a small “Search” window. To create your own account, you can use the “sign in” window in the screen below to find our library. After selecting Elmwood Public Library you will be asked for your library card #. *If you don’t have this available, please call the library at 402-994-4125. If you don’t have a card, you can stop in and get one ($10 if you are out of our village limits).
This will take you to your own “Bookshelf”. By going up to the Menu button you can scan through this virtual library. Help will take you to the page that will answer all your questions. If there is something you want to know that isn’t covered here, give us a call!
When you are searching for a book it will list every title. If the one you want is not available you can place a hold on it as OverDrive will buy another copy when there are so many holds on a book! If you want to see only the copies that are available go ahead and change the filter to “Only titles with copies available”. This cuts down on a lot of frustration!
We are throwing a lot at you but give it a shot, ask questions here or in the library. We will be having a training class coming up as well.
Hello. Elmwood Public Library has recently undergone some more changes. One of those changes includes a new Librarian. I would like to welcome Janet to the Elmwood Public Library. Thanks for stepping up to the plate Janet. If you haven’t met her yet. Swing by the Elmwood Public Library and say hello.
Well, of course, it is! But some changes are harder than others. Starting January 2, 2012, Elmwood Public Library will be open from 3 to 8 p.m. on Mondays, from 2 to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursdays and Saturdays. This change will, we hope, give all of our patrons more opportunities to come in to use the library. We had a survey back in October and this was the most popular change to the hours so we hope it will work for everyone.
Other changes are being made to the library. We’ve already moved the Large Print collection to a location where one can sit down to browse the titles. We’ve made the set of shelves near the door where the Large Print used to be a display area for books, new and old, that fit a particular event or theme. Currently, we’re celebrating the spirit of the season. Next month, we’ll probably be highlighting books and other materials on self-improvement (or should that be “elf-improvement”?)
And speaking of the new year, the library has some goals for the upcoming year. We think you will like them:
1) We want to start supplying e-books to our customers. We’re still in the fact-finding stage but it shouldn’t be too much longer and we’ll actually be able to offer the service to everyone with an Elmwood Public Library card.
2) We want to give customers web access to our Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC). Once we go live, you’ll be able to access the OPAC from this web site (http://www.elmwoodpubliclibrary.com).
3) We want to move the library’s tech resources into the 21st century by migrating to a new circulation system that, with any luck, will allow customers to access their accounts to place holds on items, renew items, check their accounts, and download e-books from home.
Personally, my goals for the next few weeks are to get the back-log of books that we have catalogued and ready to shelve then start an inventory project to make sure we really have on the shelves what our computer system says we have. It’s an ambitious goal and I hope I’m up to it.
I wanted to title this something about snakes on a plane but it occurred to me at the last second that it would be cliche and probably out-of-date. Alas. But I do want to address the idea of snakes in a library.
On November 14, we’ll be having a program at Elmwood Public Library called “Hands On Herps.” Herps being slang for herpetological specimens or snakes (I’m not sure but I think lizards are included in that category.) The program starts at 5:30 p.m. and is designed to help familiarize kids with snakes and other crawly critters. There are lots of misconceptions about our slithering friends. People commonly believe that they’re slimy (not unless they’re wet or ill.) They are cold-blooded but if they’ve been basking on a rock, they are as warm as the rock. Venomous snakes are much less likely to bite if you don’t bother them first. Most snakes would prefer to simply crawl away rather than confront you. Finally, somehow, the notion is that snakes have no emotions. Having owned snakes and having known a large number of them, I can tell you that snakes do have emotions. Of course, they aren’t like the emotions we humans have but they do get frightened, they can exhibit happiness, and they can also show pain.
There are also a lot of misconceptions about libraries and library workers. One misconception is that we run around “shushing” people all day. I’ll have you know I haven’t shushed anyone for nearly a decade now. I have asked boisterous people to take it down a notch in polite, friendly terms and they have complied but that’s not the nasty old “SHHHHHH.” Another misconception is that library workers have no life outside of libraries. While it’s true that most of us consider ourselves to be part brick and mortar with book-paste for blood, many of us have fun doing some of the most interesting hobbies. Personally, I train and show dogs as my hobby. I’ve got a lot of crazy dog people as friends who never know my secret identity as “LibraryLady.” And if you are thinking about divulging my secret, just remember, I know who you are and where you live–more importantly, I know what you read.
The final misconception is that all library workers do is sit around and read all day. Like the notion of the slimy snake, only if we’re wet or ill. Most of the time, we’re too busy doing our jobs to read. Alas.
Okay, I’m going to catch some flack for this, I know. Libraries shouldn’t be silent. If you’re sitting in the middle of a large building (or even a small one) and there is no noise but the clacking of your own computer keyboard while you’re typing a blog, that’s a bad sign. Now, maybe if that’s because you aren’t open, that’s not so bad. But a silent library when it’s open? That’s not good.
Silence is wonderful if you have to make a huge life decision or if you’re trying to catch 40 winks but a library should only be silent if no one is there. That’s the main reason why they shouldn’t be silent. Quiet is something else. The whispers of a couple of kids talking about the latest 39 Clues, the mutter of a mother telling her child to pick out another book, or the exasperated sigh of a patron who has forgotten his email password for the umpteenth time (and “No, sir, I’m sorry but I don’t know what you’re password is” in a gentle voice from a sympathetic staff-member), those help stave off “silence.”
Silence is bad because it equals (at least in my mind) the lack of life, as in death. Any library of books crackles, in my mind, with energy. All those words and thoughts, those untranslated feelings waiting to spring from the page, those vibrant pictures (literal and figurative) waiting to emerge, are energy just waiting to be shared. Energy equals life. But if there is no one to share that energy with, those wonders of energy bound might as well be door-stops. Contrary to popular belief, books don’t make a library; people, most importantly, our patrons (customers, clients, whatever is the current vogue to call them) do.
So that’s why I think a library shouldn’t be silent. Quiet maybe, silent never. If you haven’t been to the library in a while, maybe it’s time you came back to visit. If not for you then for the books. Silence is a burial shroud for books and a burial shroud is never a good look.
Just a quick reminder that we’re hosting an Open House tonight (9/29/11) here at EPL from 6 to 8 p.m. We’re thanking Cindy Mumford fro her service as library director as well as introducing the new director (me) . W’e'll be serving refreshments and just generally having a good time. Please feel free to stop by and say “hello.”
That said, I do want to point out that any time the library is open, I love to see people stop in. Unfortunately, like many small town libraries, we’re probably the best-kept open secret. Too many people take it for granted that there’s a library in town but ask them when the last time they visited and they have a hard time telling you. (Now, it could be worse. I once worked at a library where the local police didn’t have a clue it existed!) We’ve got a primo location, right next to the Post Office. This is a great community resource and we always need public input to improve and to make ourselves more responsive to user needs. Come on down. We don’t bite (well, at least we’ve had our shots if we do.:)
There’s an old saying about “A woman’s work is never done.” I think that could safely be altered to a librarian’s work is never done. Between cataloging and processing new books for the collection, weeding out out-dated and just plain yucky books, shelving items, planning programs, and working with customers (my favorite part of the job), it doesn’t seem like I ever get any job truly done. There’s always books in the bookdrop to be checked in and shelved, customers with questions about the computers and the Internet, and the occasional request for paper (either in the printer or the restroom), I’ve always got something going on. So it’s sometimes a relief to be able to sit quietly for a moment and consider how lucky I am as a librarian.
First of all, don’t get me wrong, libraries aren’t having an easy time of the current economic situation. That said, though, we could have it a lot worse. We’re fortunate here in Elmwood that our community strongly supports us. We get donations of books on a regular basis. While our budget hasn’t increased dramatically, we can thank our lucky stars it hasn’t been cut.
Second, Elmwood PL has a great relationship with our up-and-coming customers. We love it when kids come to our library to look for books, check out the latest Facebook posting, or attend a program. With any luck, in 10 to 20 years when today’s kids are running things, they won’t forget the wonderful experiences they had at the local public library.
Finally, a great deal of work was put in by my predecessor librarians. We don’t have the best collection in the world but I’d certainly put it up against most other towns of a similar size. We had librarians who had the vision and courage to bring diversity to the collection while maintaining the wisdom to preserve those treasures that are wholly unique to this community. This is certainly a collection the town should be proud of. More than that, our library building, while small, is spacious, well-lit and flexible enough to house both computers and books. Somebody was thinking ahead when they built our building; kudos to them!
In short, Elmwood PL is a great place to visit and a wonderful place to work. We’ll be looking at making some improvements to the library services we offer. Electronic books are already high on the priority list to be added to the collection. We’re looking at ways to make our library catalog and resources more available to customers, say, even from their home computers with a web interface of some sort. But we’ll always have books and, with any luck, a librarian who will check them in, shelve them and help all the customers to find them. For now, that’s me, and I am a truly lucky duck.