[DWJ] Re: Dwj Digest, Vol 30, Issue 12

Jon Noble jon_p_noble at yahoo.com
Fri Feb 29 16:00:34 EST 2008

----- Original Message ----
From: "deborah.dwj at suberic.net" <deborah.dwj at suberic.net>
To: Diana Wynne Jones discussion <dwj at suberic.net>
Sent: Saturday, March 1, 2008 12:42:39 AM
Subject: RE: [DWJ] Re: Dwj Digest, Vol 30, Issue 12

On Fri, 29 Feb 2008, Jennifer Rowland wrote:
> Aimee wrote:
>> Now, if I could only find a full-time, well-paying job that would
>> allow me to spend my time recommending and buying books for a library...
>> And doing copious "research"...
>> Hm. I'm sure a lot of listers have this job, or something like it.
>> Anybody?
>> Is there a downside?
>> :)
> Well, there's the cunning approach of being a librarian... the downside there is the "well-paying" aspect! ;P

The other downside is finding a library with acquisitions budget.
Or rather, a library with an acquisitions budget which isn't
spending it all on electronic.

I really enjoy helping my middle school teacher friend do
acquisitions for her Drop Everything and Read shelf. A couple of
times year she gets a big sum of money and we gleefully make book
lists. Her mission, with my help: turning urban thugs into
fantasy dorks since 2003.

When I was interviewing for the job I currently have I was also
interviewing for a position at a local private girls' middle
school. Gorgeous gorgeous library, huge acquisitions budget,
active book groups with the students, practically every new great
middle school and young adult fantasy novel on display on the
shelves in hardcover. I was turned between salivating with
jealousy and real anger at the educational inequities in my city,
but it was mostly salivating with jealousy. For timing reasons I
ended up having to drop out of that process, but wow. If I'd
known I had a good shot at the job (I knew they had a strong
internal candidate who they ended up hiring) I have stuck it out,
because in a lot of ways, serious dream job.

Downsides to being a school librarian are mainly the kids and what they can do. In some cases the problems they have away from school can break your heart. In other instances the problems they cause at school can break your library. I've had one burnt down - 25 years ago now. Last stocktake quite a few fantasy titles were missing. I have a suspicion of who was responsible, but have recently learnt from the school councilor that her family are under severe financial pressure at home and the kids are under a lot of stress, I'll probably keep recomending titles to her, and try to buy the ones she likes. In many parts of the world I believe the school librarian is an endangered species, at least in my state in Australia to government attempts to ensure that every school as a Teacher-Librarian who is a qualified librarian as well as a qualified teacher.


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