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Archive for the ‘Librarianship’ Category

As almost everybody I know is currently saying, how can it be 20 years since Buffy the Vampire Slayer first aired? It’s been such an important part of life, and I can still remember the first time I saw it, completely by accident. I was at university, with less than regular access to a television, so had somehow managed to miss the first series. One day at the family seat, I was channel hopping, and stopped at the sound of Cibo Matto. Hello, ‘When She Was Bad‘, where have you been all my life? Note: before you proceed, if you’ve never watched the show, there will be spoilers in this post. (more…)

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It’s National Poetry Day on Thursday! And so I have two school libraries to festoon with verse over the next three days, and two poetry competitions to organise. (more…)

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It’s been almost three weeks since my last blog post; I have survived the first two weeks of running a school library. It’s started really well, but the work is nonetheless hard, with so much to learn, and thus has been incredibly exhausting. Consequently, blogging hasn’t really been a priority. You might suspect me of withdrawing my allegiance from Rupert Giles, given this blogpost’s title, but this will never be so. The truth of the matter is that I wanted to break the ice with the pupils by showing that we had some shared interests; the regrettable truth is that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is older than a good few of the kids, while they are mostly likely to know who Batman is. I haven’t tested them on their knowledge of  the Buffyverse but invoking the Batverse has worked out well. (more…)

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I spent last week in five different libraries in the Glasgow area, in my new job as a school librarian. Over the Christmas holidays, I applied for a secondment to Glasgow Libraries’ School Libraries Outreach department. Readers mine, I was successful! Exactly one week ago today, I began work at my beloved Mitchell Library, a place I have known and loved since my grandparents first took me to visit it. (more…)

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Jacob Marley appears to Scrooge. Etching by John Leech. Source: Glasgow University Library Special Collections

Over the summer, I started writing a bi-monthly newsletter for Dennistoun Library‘s Fantasy, Horror, Science Fiction, and Supernatural collections, which are under my particular care. It’s been rather successful, and, feeling festive, I decided to produce a special Christmas edition. Each issue opens with some book recommendations and/or list of new books, and in this issue I focused on books about Christmas or winter. How could I not include Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, o so conveniently published on this day in 1843? It is after all a story which includes ghosts and time travel – it should by rights be shelved with fantasy, horror, science fiction, and supernatural collections. Dickens, always concerned with social problems, found a way of writing a story about the hardships faced by the Victorian poor, without making said story unduly worthy or “preachy”. I chose this particular extract because it features the first appearance of a ghost in the story – Jacob Marley – but also because the language is quite wonderful. The comparison of Marley’s face in the door knocker to “a bad lobster in a dark cellar” is quite wonderful.  (more…)

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We decided to play some Christmas music in the library today, as lots of children had turned up and we wanted to encourage them to feel the Christmas spirit. One of our most adorable regulars was particularly pleased to hear Frosty the Snowman, and in her honour, that’s today’s example of Christmas literature: (more…)

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BWS-Logos-RGB-(red-HR2015) It’s Book Week Scotland 2015! How do you plan to celebrate? There’s lots going on across the country, and you can find out what there is to do near you here.  This year, professionally speaking, I will be assisting at an author event organised exclusively for Dennistoun Library Book Group; I have been working with the group since January this year. As part of Glasgow Libraries’ A Book, a Brew, and a Banter series of author events, Tom Ogden Keenan will be talking to the group about his novel The Father, set in his hometown of Glasgow, at their meeting this Thursday. I hope it will be the first of many such events for the group. We’ve also put together a display of the group’s reading over the past year in Dennistoun Library proper; I’ll be posting some photos thereof once I’ve done some last tweaks tomorrow. (more…)

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