Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Day 3: Philly Fun!

Day 3

     Rise and shine! Day 3 was an early one.  Although the keynote address from Robert F Kennedy, Jr. was not scheduled until 2:30 pm, Diane and I decided to attend preconferences.  Diane chose the grant writing session while I took it easy with Book Buzz Junior.  In this session, I listened to a panel discuss new and upcoming books.  So what did I notice?  Upcoming books from these publishers are definitely presenting multicultural and diversified characters.  I heard about Mexican-American, Chinese-American, and Indian-American characters.  I, for one, and am excited about this. 
     The next thing I believe my readers will be excited about is the upcoming prequel to the Boxcar Children.  You heard right!  We are finally going to find out how those 4 orphaned children ended up in the boxcar! Yay!

     The last trend I noticed, sci-fi and dystopian literature is going to be big.  Scratch that, dystopian literature is all ready huge!  If you haven't heard of the Hunger Games, then you must have been living under a rock.  There will be a couple of books published soon that are very much like the dystopic Hunger Games if it were to meet The Lord of the Flies.

     This informative session ended at 10:00 am and I had a bit of free time so I grabbed a quick lunch and visited my friends at The Philadelphia Center, the school I attended in the spring of 2008.   To say it was good to be back is an understatement.  I was so happy to see Ruth and Mark I actually cried.  I just couldn't help myself.  I sat for an hour talking with Mark about my love of the library and working with children and the inevitable.. What's next? Funny that 4 years ago I sat in the exact same seat talking to Mark about the exact same thing.  Though at that time, it was what to do after college.  Now it's what to do for the rest of my life!  With all that said,  that is one thing I am hoping to take away from PLA 2012.  I am hoping that being here aids me in figuring out my future.

     Last on the list of things to do was listen to Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. give the keynote address.  To be honest, I was a little worried about this talk.  First, the poor guy was continually being called JFK as I walked with hundreds of other librarians to the terrace room.  Next, I had no idea what I was getting into.  Doing a little research aka reading the program, I found out I was going to be listening to RFK, Jr. discuss the importance of our environment and the steps our country must take in order to take better care of it.  Now, I'm the honest sort so I will tell you that it was a little boring.  He had some funny one-liners that got the audience laughing, but really I just kept thinking, what does this have to do with libraries?  And you know what, at the end, I figured it out. 

     He discussed the cost of information, and how it is almost free. As I sit here typing this on my iPad, I figured out how right he was.  Libraries today are facing a great change in technology with the invention of Nooks, Kindles, and iPads.  We are also facing a great change in how people receive their information, not only instantaneously but at any time of the day.  Lastly, with the coming of ebooks, a new conversation must be created in order to make sure libraries not only have a voice, but that we are each able to have complete and easy access to information.  So like I said, I figured it out.  We, as a country, not only need to take care of our environment, but our libraries as well because libraries will be on the forefront of dispersing information about the upcoming global need for environmental change.  Good, right?  Ok, that may not be the main connection, but I like it.
     The end of my day was spent perusing the vendors and seeing what is going to be new and exciting in the library world.  More on that tomorrow as I get through more vendors.

     Lastly, today is March 14 or 3.14.  My friend Carolyn always celebrates 3.14 day as Pi Day.  Get it?  So go forth, eat a piece of pie or a whole pie if you would like, and tune in tomorrow when I start my first day of programs.  Hopefully new and inspiring ideas will ensue.

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