Next week

Next week the denizens of blogland what care about kids and YA literature will be interviewing many amazing writers such as Sonya Hartnett and Holly Black and Ysabeau Wilce (and, um, me). Check out the full schedule of interviews. If the smart questions I was asked are any guide I reckon they’ll be corkers.

Next week is also the annual summer American Library Association conference. I sadly will not be attending. Waaah! I went to the one in New Orleans last year (or was it the year before?) and it was just incredible. I had such a wonderful time I’d even contemplate going to the midwinter ALA conference. And youse lot know how I feel about winter.

To make me feel like I’m not entirely missing out I have a question for librarians and non-librarians alike.

For the librarians: What do you love most about your job?

For non-librarians: What do you love most about librarians and libraries?


  1. John Klima on #

    I love finding books for people. This takes two forms normally:

    1. The person who doesn’t quite know the title (or author or subject or whatever) of their book, but I find it for them anyway.

    2. The person who is looking for something to read, but isn’t sure what they want.

    In both cases it’s a wonderful little endorphim (did I spell that right?) rush to help someone out. And these people can be patrons, colleagues, young, old, anything.

    PS-I just realized that I always spend a bunch of time capitalizing and whatnot on my comments on Justine’s post and then they just get wiped out. LOL!

  2. PJ Hoover on #

    I love

    1) that librarians truly love books.
    2) the memories I have of finding my favorite books at my childhood library
    3) the rows and rows of shelves
    4) the feeling I get when I think I’ve discovered a book no one has picked up in a century
    5) the special collections sections
    6) the dust (weird, I know, but it goes along with old libraries)
    7) the open arms librarians seem to embrace authors with
    8) seeing my kids relive all my fond memories in libraries of their own

  3. Sarah on #

    I’m a non-librarian and I love the infinite possibility that the library represents. You could, theoretically, put your hands on ANY book. Not only that, libraries are a monument to reading. You don’t go there to socialize (unless it’s a specific event, or in a study room) which creates an atmosphere much like a cathedral, but dedicated to learning.

  4. Ariel Cooke on #

    OK, this is going to sound totally sappy but i love being a librarian because i actually get a helper’s high from fitting the right book to the right person. i love being valued for knowing about children’s & YA books instead of being considered a case of arrested development. the library is just such a haven after everywhere else i’ve ever worked, a list that includes book & magazine publishing, documentary film production, non-profit organizations and museums. people complain about politics at the library–ha! after journalism it’s like working among the gentle herbivores! not that there isn’t competition and backstabbing but in comparison it takes place in slow motion.

    justine, i will be there at ALA next week and sorry not to get a chance to meet you and have you sign my beloved copies of your books.

    your many beeg fan,

  5. Debby Kyritz on #

    As a children’s librarian I get to do two of my favorite things- read all the new books and hang out with cool kids! How could I not love this job?

  6. Jen Robinson on #

    I’m not a librarian. But what I love about libraries and librarians is being surrounded by other people who genuinely care about books. I’ve also found that most librarians are passionate defenders of free speech, and opponents of censorship. This makes me feel safe, like the librarians are on the job, protecting past, present, and future books.

    Although I’m not a librarian, I volunteer with and am on the board for the Foundation and Friends of my local library. I participate because I think that books and libraries are important, and can use all the help they can get.

  7. amy fiske on #

    as a teen librarian, what i love most is working with teens. they kind of have a bad reputation – especially in libraries – but i get a huge kick out of them and i really love being a part of creating programs for them and connecting them with books they like.

    oh yeah, the books. love them, especially when they’re free. i don’t actually get to read at work but i do have plenty of access to books. but i could probably have that anyway – it’s the kids that are the best part.

    and i get to meet authors! i’m lucky enough to work for a library district that brings authors here for visits. how cool is that? we’ll get you and scott here some day, justine! and thank you for the shout out for librarians. you’ve made some librarians smile today.

  8. heather whipple on #

    I went to library school because I was exploring Gopher (that’s pre-web for you youngsters) just to see what I could find when it occurred to me that there was a job that might pay me to do that. I also liked the idea of being able to research any topic but not have to write a paper about it. And that’s still what I love about it: finding out stuff about anything. It’s particularly fun when you can find info someone actually wants and show them how to do it themselves. Books are great and all, but it was the internet and online searching that sucked me in.

    fyi – the midwinter ALA meeting is sometimes held in warmer locales, including New Orleans and San Antonio. It’ll be in San Diego in 2011.

  9. Karen Mahoney on #

    Librarian from London, UK, here. I think the thing I love the most is visiting local nurseries and reading to the children there. The way 4-year-old kids respond to books – and there’s a wonderful variety of reactions! – always makes me smile.

  10. jonathan on #

    As a librarian i love being immersed in and surrounded by the world of literature. Add to that the chance to help children & teens find their way into or around that world and I can’t think of any job I’d rather be doing (except maybe writing – but who wouldn’t?).

  11. simmone on #

    gem in nftu says she loves the state library because it’s filled with the perfume of knowledge … ahhh. I grew up at the old Ringwood library – everyday after school I’d go there to do my homework until mum finished work. as a littlie i gravitated to the ‘stories from other lands’ section and then when I got a bit older I’d lurk in the adult section and try read huxley and art books. i never feel uncomfortable in a library.

  12. The Bibliophile on #

    I love walking into a room (or a building) and being surrounded by books, by shelf after shelf of books stretching up to the ceiling. What better place for this than a library? There’s just so much to read. Authors I’ve heard of and ones I haven’t. Travel books and science books and picture books and cookbooks and magazines and fiction and history…A good library as it all and has a lot of it.

    I love librarians because they care for and take care of all those books, and because they seem to know how to find the answer to any question. What a fabulous skill to have! (Oh, and because a bunch of my good friends as well as several ancestors are/were librarians)

  13. shaolin librarian on #

    I’m fond of getting first crack at stuff that comes in. 😉 I also like hanging out with other people that value literature as much as I do, and occasionally amazing people with the ability to find the answer to the question.

  14. Sally Lou Liz on #

    I work in a library, and I’m not a librarian. I’m a library assistant. Trust me, the place would fall apart without us 😉

    I love my job. I get a great deal of satisfaction from helping people find what they are looking for, whether it is fiction, non-fiction, websites, music, whatever. And, somtimes best of all, I get to see all the new stuff! I’m an avid reader, and can’t imagine working anywhere else. I can talk books all day long!!

  15. Gabrielle on #

    I’m not a librarian. I like how many books there are in a library. I like to see my favourite authors’ books on a special shelf. I like rearranging the shelves so that my favourite books are better placed. I like how librarians are always nice, and how they love books probably as much as I do.
    I can’t wait to go to ALA! Although I’m pretty sad you and Scott (As said by Maureen Johnson, the YA royal couple) won’t be there. But I’ll meet MJ, and tons of cool authors, which is good.

  16. jonathan on #

    Be careful about saying things like “i like rearranging the shelves” in front of us librarians 🙂

  17. Gabrielle on #

    Hehe. Well, I don’t do it often. But like, if a random book was put back at the wrong place, and in front of a good book, I move it. I’m not very naughty. 😉

  18. jonathan on #

    as long as you’re moving them from the wrong place to the right place, that’s ok.

    depending on the shelving layout you could choose also certain books to be on face out display shelves.

    all the wonderful writers who were at Reading Matters in Melbourne (including JL) are getting prominence on my display shelves at the moment. The only problem is they keep getting borrowed and I have to find more of their books.

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