Here’s the Situation!

Just thought everyone would be anxious to know that reality TV personality the Situation from MTV’s Jersey Shore is writing a book:

“The Sitch told EW.com’s Tim Stack that it will be “a tell-all book. Sorta like how I came about and everything like that.” “

Apparently he is going to have someone help with the writing…

— Julie

Happy Fourth of July!

Wow! It looks like we really are going to have a beautiful long weekend to celebrate the 4th of July! Parades, picnics, fireworks and family get-togethers are fantastic ways to spend the weekend! I don’t think our forefathers thought that we would be celebrating this way on this day when they adopted the Declaration of Independence way back on July 4, 1776 in Philadelphia. Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and the rest of the Continental Congress just wanted a document to announce our independence from Great Britain and to think that this great document has lasted over 200 years! There’s some neat information about the Declaration of Independence and is signers at this website. Check it out!

As for me, I will be celebrating like the millions of others this weekend. I will be on the back of my brother’s truck throwing out candy while my brother and nephew play patriotic music on their accordions in the Parma 4th of July parade.

Enjoy your holiday and of course, Happy Reading! ~Donna

Summertime, and the reading is easy…

Well, not easy, but some school districts are sending home books with students to keep as school lets out.  The goal is to prevent the backsliding that often accompanies the hazy days of summer. Especially for children who come from homes where economics means owning books is not possible, much less a priority. Something I’ve taken for granted in my home, where we’ve been very blessed with family and friends gifting us and also passing along their gently used copies of all kinds of wonderful worlds for my daughters to sink into. How amazing that these students will get to feel that excitment of having a book of their very own.

Read more: http://mediaroom.scholastic.com/node/341

— Julie

Feeling Roguish?

Sarah Palin’s new book, Going Rogue, is out and selling very well. Of course, the library has copies and people are waiting in line for those, including me. I think people are interested in it for various reasons: they liked her vice-presidential campaign and are wondering about a potential 2012 presidential bid, curiosity about a very public figure, or as one person quoted to me, “keep your friends close but your enemies closer.”  I just want to see all of the 68 photos that I read are included – that’s a lot of pictures!

— Julie

P.S. Was looking up “rogue” in the dictionary to make sure my spelling of roguish was correct…

Oxford Reference Online

Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary

A Library Without Books

That would never happen except in the pages of a science fiction novel, right? Well, I’ve been disturbed ever since reading the article in the Boston Globe about Cushing Academy, a prep school outside Boston, that is doing just that. According to the article, the school is getting rid of over 20,000 books, “aside from a few hundred children’s books and valuable antiquarian works.” It is interesting that the school has the same name as a famous horror film actor because the actions of school administrators seem pretty horrific, IMHO.  I admit I’m biased, not because of my profession, but because of my lifelong love of books. And not just the content but the tactile – curl up on the couch with, fall asleep with it lying on my chest, flip through to find an interesting illustration, and much more – experience of physical books.

 My profession embraces all things technology. We love offering the latest in downloadable and digital books, music, movies and more. Periodical databases are heaven compared to finding a reference in the Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature (anyone remember that?) and then hunting down the journal. Googling can give the answer, or at least a head start on finding it, from many a reliable website. And how cool is it to get information to people not only in your community but all over the world within seconds? Technology has its rightful place in libraries and all places of learning, but to believe that books no longer do seems to be a terrible disservice to those students.

 Oh, but the good news is that they are putting in a $50,000 coffee shop…where the reference desk used to be.

— Julie

NaNoWriMo

No, I’m not channeling Mork from Ork but want to share with you that November is National Novel Writing Month. It’s a very cool idea that began in 1999 when Chris Baty and 20 others in the San Francisco area decided they were going to write a 175 page novel in one month.  Last year they had more than 120,000 participants from all over the world!! 

The goal is to start writing November 1 and complete 50,000 words by November 30.  Why? How could something written so quickly possibly be any good? Well, most of them probably aren’t the great American novel, but that’s not the point. The idea is to motivate people to do something they’ve been wanting to do but can never find the time, or can’t get past the first chapter, paragraph, sentence.

You may end up with nothing but dreck but you can truly claim to be a novelist! Or you may end up with something that can be reworked into a best-selling novel just like one participant, Sara Gruen – maybe you’ve heard of the book Water for Elephants?

I’m no aspiring novelist, but I am thinking of reworking the concept behind NaNoWriMo into something that will help me tackle things that keep getting put off. My first attempt will be OrMyBeWk: Organize My Bedroom Week. And I’m going to start tomorrow…or maybe Monday…well, I’ll let you know how it goes.

—Julie

War of the Words

I just read that Walmart lowered online prices on some popular pre-order titles like Stephen King’s new one, Under the Dome. Apparently Amazon responded by lowering some of their prices to $9 and so Walmart took it even lower to $8.98. When booksellers compete, you win! Go forth and order some Christmas presents while the price war is on:

Walmart vs. Amazon

–Julie

St. Benedict of Nursia

The other day, when I was listening to the radio about the arrival of Pope Benedict the XVI, I was intrigued when a commentator said that he had chosen his name from St. Benedict of Nursia, a monk born in the 5th century who was the founder of western monasticism. After a little digging, I found that St. Benedict created the Benedictine Rule, organizing monks into communities and outlining guidelines for behavior and expectations within those communities. St. Benedict thought that, in addition to prayer, monks should perform manual labor and scholarship, studying, writing and copying ancient manuscripts and holy works. If not for St. Benedict, many ancient and medieval books would not have been preserved. So hats off to St. Benedict for valuing the written word!

                                                                                                                                   ~Dori