Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Tag Archives: Local Library

#MainStreetWriters – Joining Together to Improve the Literary Landscape

Main Street Writers Movement

Click this Image to find out How to Join…

Since I published my first and the most complete post about the Main Street Writers Movement, I’ve begun my own little campaign in my own location—Akron, OH, USA—by emailing info to the local library’s Adult Services Librarian and receiving a very positive response. I’ll be calling local bookstores, writers’ groups, and publishers next.

Actually, I’m hoping I meet someone else during this process who’s also promoting the Movement :-)

I must share that MSWM is not just for writers; it’s for “Writers, readers, booksellers, publishers, editors, publicists, agents, and anyone who wants to participate in the literary conversation.”

So, when the founder of Main Street Writers Movement, Laura Stanfill, tweeted a link to a story in Oregon Coast Today, I knew I had to blog about it

The article was written by journalist and author, Lori Tobias, and here are a few excerpts:

“Today, for what might be the first time since Girl Scouts, I took a pledge. It involves the simple promise to join other writers in supporting each other. A given, right? Not necessarily.”

A critical comment about the lack of support when her novel was published:

“After Wander found a home, I was overwhelmed by the genuine happiness for me. But I was also sucker punched by those who claimed to share my joy, but soon bowed out of my life.”


“…when Laura Stanfill…mentioned she was forming the Main Street Writers Movement to encourage other writers to support each other, I got it. As a publisher and novelist herself, Stanfill has seen what can happen to writers when the community lets them down.”

And, about the potential of the Movement:

“Stanfill launched the movement barely a month ago, but already she’s seeing the impact. When a publisher and an author, both from Ann Arbor, separately contacted Stanfill, she connected them. They are now friends and supporters of each other’s work. She’s had people take the pledge from all over the country and even as far away as London…”

Then, Lori quotes Laura:

“What I want to do is encourage writers to celebrate each other and to honor each other’s successes and efforts, so we’re all stronger and less lonely. By talking about the market and sharing stories, writers start to feel better about themselves. We are better and happier when we are allies for each other.”

If you have any interest at all, do go read the full article; and, don’t forget, this Movement is for “Writers, readers, booksellers, publishers, editors, publicists, agents, and anyone who wants to participate in the literary conversation.”
If you don’t see a way to comment (or, “reply”) after this post, try up there at the top right…
Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
Google Author Page
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Younger People and Public Libraries


Image Courtesy of David Lat ~

I have 32 posts tagged “Library”

I just wrote one the other day called, Do Physical Libraries Still Matter?

Apparently they do still matter to Millennials (those 16-29) in the United States.

I can’t help but think Global Millennials in affluent countries find libraries useful too…

The Pew Research Internet Project recently released a new study, Younger Americans and Public Libraries.

Here’s an interesting note from the explanation of the survey:

“There are actually three different ‘generations’ of younger Americans with distinct book reading habits, library usage patterns, and attitudes about libraries. One “generation” is comprised of high schoolers (ages 16-17); another is college-aged (18-24), though many do not attend college; and a third generation is 25-29.”

Other key points derived from the survey:

Millennials’ lives are full of technology, but they are more likely than their elders to say that important information is not available on the internet.

Millennials are quite similar to their elders when it comes to the amount of book reading they do, but young adults are more likely to have read a book in the past 12 months.

The community and general media-use activities of younger adults are different from older adults.

As a group, Millennials are as likely as older adults to have used a library in the past 12 months, and more likely to have used a library website.

As with the general population, most younger Americans know where their local library is, but many say they are unfamiliar with all the services it may offer.

And, a final general finding from the survey:

“Younger Americans are significantly more likely than older adults to have used a library in the past year, including using a library website.”

What I’m wondering is if these same results about library usage would have been obtained 10, 20, or even 50 years ago…
Check Out our Latest Poll…
Read Some Strange Fantasies
To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

So, What Are Libraries Good For, Now That So Many People Use the Internet?

The first answer to that Title Question could well be, “Libraries are good for getting free Internet access.”pew study

It’s hard for some folks to remember that not everyone has easy access to the Internetyet

The Pew Research Center recently released a new study, Library Services in the Digital Age.

That colorful pie-chart shows the results for the question, “Would you use “Amazon”-style customized book/audio/video recommendation schemes that are based on your prior library behavior?”

Remembering that the study was conducted in the U.S.A., and taking Very & Somewhat Likely, 64% would tend to use such a service.

Would you?

Remembering the Title Question of this post, this statement from the study becomes very interesting:

“The availability of free computers and internet access now rivals book lending and reference expertise as a vital service of libraries.”

This study has much more information, such as these findings:

  • Online research services allowing patrons to pose questions and get answers from librarians: 37% of Americans ages 16 and older would “very likely” use an “ask a librarian” type of service, and another 36% say they would be “somewhat likely” to do so.
  • Apps-based access to library materials and programs: 35% of Americans ages 16 and older would “very likely” use that service and another 28% say they would be “somewhat likely” to do so.
  • Access to technology “petting zoos” to try out new devices: 35% of Americans ages 16 and older would “very likely” use that service and another 34% say they would be “somewhat likely” to do so.
  • GPS-navigation apps to help patrons locate material inside library buildings: 34% of Americans ages 16 and older would “very likely” use that service and another 28% say they would be “somewhat likely” to do so.
  • “Redbox”-style lending machines or kiosks located throughout the community where people can check out books, movies or music without having to go to the library itself: 33% of Americans ages 16 and older would “very likely” use that service and another 30% say they would be “somewhat likely” to do so.

Then, after even more fascinating results, the study begins a summary with this statement (bold text by me):

“This report explores the changing world of library services by exploring the activities at libraries that are already in transition and the kinds of services citizens would like to see if they could redesign libraries themselves.”

Is your local library in that category?

I’d love to see some Comments after this post about Your local library

So, now, I have to bring up yesterday’s post, A Place Called LibraryThing ~ A Space To Have A Love Affair With Books, and let you know that I absolutely had a love affair with books at my library while I was growing up—even had a job in my early teens as a Page, re-shelving books

And, after I’d written yesterday’s post, I went on an exploration of LibraryThing and stayed up till six in the morning putting books on the shelves of my very own LibraryThing <<< that link will take you to my own little local library on the World Wide Web :-)

I slept for a couple hours then went right back to my library and added a bunch of tags to my books and another bunch of short reviews

So, tying all these personal-library-escapades into the Pew Research Study question about having your library offer the ability to have recommendations based on your past use, since I now have 54 books in my online library and nearly half of them have tags and reviews, LibraryThing sits in the background and makes all kinds of connections for me to use, based on the personal libraries of the other 1,632,691 members

My own little library helping me find recommended books and recommending connections with people who like the kinds of books I like :-)

But it gets even better!

LibraryThing has an article called, Pew study: Library patrons want personalized recommendations, and they talk about services they offer to real brick-and-mortar libraries.

Check out LibraryThing for Libraries where they spell out these services:

Catalog Enhancements
Book Display Widgets
Library Anywhere

That service called BookPsychic is fascinating.

It’s only available in three countries right now and each country has only two libraries hooked up to the service; but, LibraryThing is actively seeking more libraries

So, here’s LibraryThing offering real libraries a service that the Pew study said 64% of those surveyed would use—an “Amazon”-style customized recommendation scheme based on prior library behavior.

Now, I know a few of you are wondering about the usefulness of a service that is only available at six libraries.

Never doubt the ingenuity of LibraryThing :-)

Get a free account here.

Put in a bunch of books you like—it takes about 30 seconds per book once you get the hang of it—don’t worry at first about tagging them or writing reviews.

Now, go over to BookPsychic, sign up, and link it to your LibraryThing account

Presto, you are one of the very satisfied 64% :-)

By the way, LibraryThing is quite multilingual, too
Our Comment Link Is At The Top of The Post :-)
For Private Comments, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com
* Google Author Page

%d bloggers like this: