April 17 is the first national Poem In Your Pocket Day, created by the Academy of American Poets to help us celebrate April as National Poetry Month. READ MORE
Dale Messick started the first enduring newspaper comic strip by a woman, Brenda Starr, in 1940, and Nicole Hollander (Sylvia), Cathy Guisewite (Cathy), and Lynn Johnston (For Better or Worse) followed in her footsteps, only much later. Women creating graphic novels came still later. In fact, this core collection of books either made up of comic-book short stories and comic-book serials or created as books is an honor roll of pioneers. READ MORE
Something weird and wonderful happened to me in October 2007. The U.S. State Department sent me to the Kyrgyz Republic in central Asia on a public library good will mission. This odyssey began in August 2007 when I found a message on my desk from the U.S. State Department offering me a speaking engagement in a central Asian republic. I first believed this was a practical joke—“Yeah,” I thought, “The Government wants me to go to Kazakhstan and teach the Dewey Decimal Classification to Borat.” However, when I returned the call to Washington, I found out this was for real. READ MORE
In addition to the hundreds of celebrity suggestions from librarians, teachers, readers and fans, ALA Graphics staff seeks out celebrities from a wide range of occupations: movie and TV stars, comedians, athletes, musicians, innovators, heroic figures and the like. We try to find highly recognizable–and therefore popular–celebrities. We also consider a variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds to reach the diverse populations libraries serve. READ MORE
This year, NBA legend and author Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is this year's honorary Library Card Sign-up Month chair. “The library has always been my own personal time machine. I can walk through the doors and land in any place, any time period in history. I didn’t have to wonder what their worlds were like; I could experience it first hand,” Jabbar has said. READ MORE
By Barbara ConatyKinshasa Municipal Library, Democratic Republic of the CongoIn a city where nine million people make their home, there is just one public library, the municipal library of the Funa district. Headed by Professor Tete, who also teaches cataloguing at the University of Kinshasa (UNIKIN), this library was established with the assistance of the French government in the late 90’s as an early bid for normalcy after the civil strife of Mobutu’s overthrow. READ MORE
The Oakland (Calif.) Public Library recently held its 5th annual Making Manga Magic contest, asking teens to create their own Manga/Anime Characters. Manga are Japanese comic books and graphic novels, typically (but not always) black-and-white and featuring stylized characters with large, round eyes. Anime refers to Japanese animation. READ MORE
By Brenda Vogel, Retired Library Coordinator, Maryland Correctional Education Libraries. Originally published in Interface, Spring 2008As ASCLA librarians our close association with digitally disadvantaged library patrons gives us an insight into their information needs and a responsibility to stand up for them.The digital world is alien to the vast majority of men and women who have been serving time in U.S. prisons from before the eras of the PC and the coming of the Digital Age. READ MORE
Have you ever read a novel that has impacted your life in a profound and meaningful way, or made you feel as though you’re not alone? Literature has the power to transform lives. This is the driving philosophy behind Changing Lives through Literature (CLTL), an award-winning alternative sentencing program that has grown from one chapter in Massachusetts in the fall of 1991, to roughly 20 chapters across the United States and England today. READ MORE
The sleepy town of Lamar, South Carolina was slowly dying. Businesses that had been there for generations were either moving away or just simply closing their doors. Stores, roads, and homes were beginning to have that run down look and feel that one might see in a ghost town out west. The community was becoming concerned; they didn’t want to lose their town to that little thing called “Indifference”. A school administrator along with these concerned citizens came together and organized the “Friends of the Lamar Library” group in the late 1990’s to help secure a larger facility. This group began raising funds to build a new building. This movement began a revitalization that would bring this little town back to life. READ MORE