Thursday, November 30, 2006

Woodworkers Display

Currently on display at the library are some beautiful wooden bowls and other woodworking projects. In the front window is a display of quilts from the Parsons Area Quilters.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Chinese Gold Murders

Tonight at 6:30 p.m. at the library will be our last book discussion in the "Encountering Asia" series sponsored by the Kansas Humanities Council. Our discussion leader will be Tom Lewis of Oklahoma Panhandle State University and we will be discussing the book The Chinese Gold Murders by Robert Van Gulik. There is a nice article on wikipedia about Van Gulik and if you enjoyed this book there are many more books in the Judge Dee series. We currently have all of the Judge Dee books on display in the main library near the south atrium seating area. Please join us tonight as we travel to 7th century China.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

What is the purpose of our blog?

An interesting post I came across this morning is a request from an academic librarian for more library directors to blog. Well, that is what I try to do, but I probably don't always include my current goals, plans or what I did today in my entries. I also have the help of one of my staff, Julie who is interested in blogging and wanted the opportunity to promote our programs and events and also give her perspective on working in a public library. I can't really call our blog a director's blog and it's not a blog only from the staff perspective. Our blog is just a nice mix of events, happenings and random thoughts. Let me know if you want more random thoughts.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Bookmarks and Booklists

One of my jobs at the library is to make bookmarks, booklists and “If You Like…” sheets for patrons to pick up and use. Today I updated a Robert B. Parker list and a Danielle Steel list, adding the new releases. Then I made a Nicholas Sparks bookmark and a bookmark that lists all the Left Behind series in order. Pick one up at the front desk the next time you are in the library. These lists are handy for those who enjoy a certain author and want to read all he or she has written. Having done that, I decided to prepare a new list of books by another popular author. I don’t read her myself, but I’ve noticed that Nora Roberts gets checked out a lot and thought she would be a good subject for a book list. I didn’t know that she is such a prolific author. Her list of books wouldn’t fit on both sides of sheet of paper, let alone a handy little bookmark! Take a look at the Nora Roberts entry in Wikipedia if you are interested in reading all she has written.

Library Elf

In the last month I had a library user ask if it was possible to use Library Elf with our online card catalog. Sadly, I had to say no, but I am hoping that by this time next year you will be able to use Library Elf (a bit of software that sends you email reminders about your overdue books) and do many other things with your library account than has been possible in the past. One of my goals for the past several years has been to make our library catalog available via the internet. Two of the main hangups for quite awhile were money and security concerns. Thanks to grant money from the State Library of Kansas, the assistance of the Southeast Kansas Library System and a generous offer from Pittsburg State University's Axe Library to host our data on their server and use their circulation and catalog software we should be migrating to a new system next September. Our online catalog should be very similar to this or this depending on how we decide to configure our system. Each library user will be able to set up their own personal account, place their own holds or requests for books and many other things. In order to move to the new system from what we have now is going to take a lot of work on our end. We are already getting our collection ready to be re-barcoded which means taking each one of our 65,000 + items off of the shelf and putting a new barcode on it. We are also going to be updating some of our computers, getting new barcode scanners, adding a new feature for us called receipt printers and learning how to work with a completely new system. The staff and I are excited about all of the changes coming up and ready to tackle this big job. I hope the users of Parsons Public Library will see the benefits once we have everything in place.

I was just reading some of our posts from a year ago and came across this. It looks like the dream is becoming a reality.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Happy Halloween

Here are some of us on Halloween.