Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I LOVE libraries 2.0

Tip of the Day: if you are ever in Fort Wayne in April, you need to visit the Vera Bradley sale. It's a site not to be missed.

I know we just talked about our love of libraries a few weeks ago, but I thought I'd give a second shout out to them since this week is National Library Week (and today is National Library Workers Day).

Now I know everyone reading this blog probably already loves libraries and uses them on a weekly basis. But I'm constantly amazed that there's still people out there that don't know what a library has to offer. Even people that use libraries weekly. And sometimes I stumble on resources that I didn't know existed either. So I thought I share just of the top of my head several services that I can think of that many libraries offer that benefit writers (and maybe other people could do the same in the comments):

1.) Access to LOTS of books. I know this is a given, but reading is the key to great writing. Having access to loads of books in the genre you want to write, or access to non-fiction materials is invaluable. Then there's all the books on the writing craft, finding agents, and even those on weird things like crime scene tips or books on a specific career or field of study to help build characters or settings.

2.) Free writers groups, workshops, or author visits. Every library I know of has author visits throughout the year. And many have weekly, bi-monthly, or periodic writer's groups.

3.) Movies that can be checked out to use for inspiration or ideas.

4.) Reliable databases to use for research. Do you need to know how much a bullet weighs? Or how big the state of Texas is? There's probably a database for that.

5.) Access to audiobooks that provide another format to listen too (especially since audio books are more expensive). But for me listening to books in multiple ways helps expand my writing.

6.) Check out CDs to help get you motivated, get you in the mind of your character, or just to provide stress relief after a difficult writing session.

7.) Used Books Sales throughout the year to provide you access with more books that you can keep and reference when writing.

8.) Travel books to help learn more about a setting or location.

9.) Internet access if you are trying to save money and living the "struggling" writer life-style.

10.) If you have a book, a place to give talks and bookmarks for them to distribute. Which is why making friends with your local librarians is always a good idea. Because if I know anything, librarians talk...and they like authors a whole lot! And what's even better is that librarians often have teen groups that might like to meet you and learn about your book as well!

11.) Reference assistance if you have a tough questions you can't find the answer to.

And there's tons more. But I'll stop the Library Love for now.

If you are curious, our library has a "Library Use Calculator" that helps you calculate how much money you save by using the library.



Andrea Mack said...

One of my favourite places ever!

I love the book recommendations that are posted around my library, from staff members and the children's librarian.

My husband loves the chance to check out magazines, since they are getting so expensive now.

And my kids also love it that they can sign out Wii games, along with books.

C. K. Kelly Martin said...

That's a fabulous list! My local library's used book sale starts tomorrow so I'm psyched. Love the library value calculator too. Neat to see how much money I'm saving.