Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Get Caught Listening and Win BIG Cash!

Need an audiobook promotion for your library? Why not piggyback with the Audio Publishers Association’s Get Caught Listening contest. You can grab the entry forms here:

Participants create a fun & engaging three-minute-or-less video promoting audiobooks to try for a batch of great prizes, from subscriptions to a $5000 grand prize, with $1,000 & $2,000 prizes as well - that’s some serious cash! Maybe enough to entice your whole A/V department to go a little nuts in front of the camera promoting the library’s audiobooks? That cash could be turned into new titles for the collection!

Or how about suggesting the contest to patrons – perhaps the chance to become a big winner will prompt some brand-new listeners to take the download plunge. I’m a little bummed out that you must be over 18 to enter, so that excludes my middle school student audiobook fans from entering. But the entry form DOES allow minors in the video if there is a parent consent form. So your Teen Advisory group can be part of the show – as long as the adult librarian submits the entry. Get your entries in by May 15th. Good luck!
(Booklist Online, March 30, 2011)

Celebrate National Library Workers Day On April 12, 2011

Celebrate the contributions made by all library workers – including librarians and support staff on the 8th annual National Library Workers Day, April 12, 2011.

Each year, thousands of communities celebrate National Library Workers Day, a time when library staff, patrons, administrators and Friends groups recognize how library services depend on the important work done by every library staff member. Celebration ideas are on the NLWD website; many are also taking the opportunity to submit library staff as Stars, describing the impact they have on their colleagues, patrons and communities.

The American Library Association-Allied Professional Association (ALA-APA), an organization that manages certification programs for library employees and advocates for better salaries and status for the library workforce, is the sponsor of National Library Workers Day. The day’s theme, "Libraries Work Because We Do!"

“In today’s information rich environment, librarians and library workers are more important than ever,” said Jenifer Grady, director of the ALA-APA. “With billions of visits and check-outs each year, libraries have become thriving technology hubs that millions rely on as their first or only choice for Internet access, particularly now during the current economic downturn.”

At a time when many Americans are facing job losses, working to gain new skills and seeking assistance in an increasingly digital world, U.S. public library workers are first responders in a time of economic uncertainty. Libraries bring together free access to computers and the Internet, a range of Internet-based resources and expert assistance to help people succeed and thrive online. In fact, 89 percent of libraries offer formal or informal technology assistance to library users, and 24% offer one-on-one technology training by appointment.

For example, the Chicago Public Library offers technology training workshops on basic computer skills, how to search the Web, how to download media; basic mouse and keyboarding skills and resume building and job searching.

This year, National Library Workers day coincides with Equal Pay Day, an awareness event to illustrate the gap between men’s and women’s wages. On this day, while library workers and libraries are being commended for their value to their communities, women in all professions will be strategizing about closing the wage gap. Data from the U.S. Census and a survey of beginning librarians show that female librarian salaries continue to be lower than male library employees. The wage gap for the nation remains with women earning 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. Library employees continue to receive lower salaries in comparison with traditionally male occupations with comparable education requirements and job responsibilities, according to the 2009-2010 Association of Research Libraries Salary Survey and the U.S. Occupational Outlook Handbook. Supporters are encouraged to wear red on Tuesday, April 12.

For more information about National Library Workers Day, please contact the Macey Morales, Manager ALA Media Relations, (312) 280-4393,, or Jennifer Petersen, ALA PR coordinator, (312) 280-5043,, or visit the National Library Worker’s Day Web site at
(American Libraries Direct, March 30, 2011)


Thursday, March 10, 2011

Leap Grants for Libraries

Better World Books' LEAP - Literacy and Education in Action Program is offering a wonderful grant opportunity for public libraries. 

Better World Books is bringing grant opportunities to libraries to significantly impact local literacy efforts. Successful applications will use funds to advance a compelling literacy project that Better World Books can follow, document and share with its readers across the world.

The needs and opportunities of the communities libraries serve vary widely and there are countless worthy projects to support. This grant process is patterned off of the California State Library's 'Pitch an Idea' program and is intended to solicit a wide range of applications that reflect this diversity.

$75,000 in funding is available; maximum grant amount is $25,000.

Simplified Process:
Interested libraries need only submit a short two page project overview and those with the best proposals will be selected for a 30 minute conversation where they will pitch their idea. After reviewing all of the pitches, Better World Books will select the winners whose projects are most viable and ready to go. Selected libraries will then be asked to complete a more detailed project plan in coordination with Better World Books. After project plans are complete, the grants will be awarded.

Selection Criteria:
 As you develop your Game Changing ideas, keep the following in mind:

•Projects should address the literacy needs of under served populations in their community; literacy needs are defined broadly: identifying, understanding, interpreting, creating, communicating, and computing information to live a more fulfilling and productive life

•Projects must be implemented between 5/16/11 – 12/31/11

•Libraries may pitch multiple projects or a single project totaling no more than $25,000 and no less that $5,000

•Libraries can present up to two Game Changing ideas, but only one idea per library will be chosen

•Each Game Changing idea must be fully supported by the Director and/or Library Administration

•Projects that involve partnerships with local government agencies are highly encouraged

•Projects that will have a measurable and long term impact on an under served population, and will continue to operate after grant funds have been utilized, will be looked upon favorably

Better World Books looks forward to reviewing applications that bring a fresh and inspired approach to challenging issues.

For more information about Better World Books' LEAP, click here.

Baker & Taylor Awards for Friends of the Library Groups

The ALTAFF/Baker & Taylor Awards recognize Friends groups for outstanding efforts to support their library. Awards are given for a specific project culminating in the year prior to application, or based on the full scope of the group’s activities during that year. Applications are judged on the following:
  • Planning: Friends, library, and community involvement, use of resources, appropriateness of the activity, and measurable goals and objectives.
  • Implementation: Use of resources, public relations, task monitoring, and broad membership involvement.
  • Evaluation: Assessment of activity or program, measurable results.
  • Innovation: New idea or implementation, creative involvement of people, fresh use of public relations.
  • Community Involvement: Broad support by the community in planning and implementation.
Winning Friends groups receive a financial award and a plaque during the ALTAFF Gala Author Tea at the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference held each summer.

Applications for the 2010 Baker & Taylor Awards are now available. Submissions are due May 2, 2011.

Download the application form
Download the release form
(American Libraries Direct, March 9, 2011)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

OverDrive Offers Two New Training Sessions

OverDrive has scheduled two new training sessions to help librarians help your patrons. These are free and do not require advance registration. Just show and enjoy.

Browse, Check Out, Download -  Friday, April 8th at 9:30 AM CDT (Access Code: 5736012)
Description: Learn how to browse, check out, and download OverDrive media. At the end of this course, staff should feel comfortable answering basic questions about your OverDrive service.
Duration: 1.5 hours.
Who should attend: All staff.

Patron Assistance: Become an OverDrive Download Library Specialist - Friday, April 29th at 9:30 AM CDT (Access Code: 5736001)
Description: We'll help take your understanding of your OverDrive service to the next level so you can share your knowledge through support and training. We'll review frequently asked questions, support tips, and online help resources.
Duration: 1 hour.
Who should attend: Project Coordinators, Technical Support, Community Outreach, Training, and Public Service staff.

CONFERENCE SETUP: Please complete all steps below.
The training will be conducted using ReadyTalk, which uses online web sharing and telephone conferencing.
 Step 1: Conference testing and setup - At least one day prior to conference
1. Test your computer: Go to
If your computer is setup properly for the conference, you'll see a green circle with a check mark.  If not, instructions will be provided to install an Adobe Flash Plugin.
2. Internet connection: OverDrive recommends using a hard line Internet connection rather than a wireless connection.
3. Audio connection:  A speaker phone is recommended for the audio conference. If your location wishes to attend but cannot dial in due to limited phone lines, please contact your OverDrive Project Manager for additional information. ReadyTalk allows up to 96 locations to call in to each training.
4. Location: For the benefit of others on the call, please choose a quiet location for your training.

Step 2: Web Conference Login - 10 to 15 minutes before the training begins
1. Make a note of the ReadyTalk access code listed in this email for the date and time you are attending (from 'Conference Details').
2. Open your Internet browser and go to:
3. Locate the 'Join a Meeting' box. Enter your access code.
4. Next, Ready Talk will display the 'Participant Registration' screen. Please enter your information as prompted, and our staff will send follow-up information after the call.

 Step 3: Audio Conference Login (required for audio) - 5 minutes before the training begins
1. Make a note of the ReadyTalk access code listed in this email for the date and time you are attending (from 'Conference Details').
2. Dial the appropriate number from your touch-tone phone. Participants within US / Canada: 1.866.740.1260
3. When prompted by the audio conference, enter your ReadyTalk access code.
(Mark Beatty, - WiLS, 728 State St. Madison WI 53726 (608) 265-5719

Monday, March 7, 2011

Wisconsin Public Library Consortium List Has Moved!

If you're wondering why you just got a "Welcome to the WPLC list" email when you were already a member, it's simple. The WPLC list has moved to a new host. The new address for the list is and the list information page is now at

Most of the archives are already there and we'll be updating it to include the most recent posts as soon as possible. There's currently an issue getting to any file that was sent as an attachment. Unfortunately the process which was supposed to update all of those links did not work correctly so links to attachments are still pointing to the old location. I'm still working on fixing that. Until it is fixed, you can right click on the link, copy the link location, paste it into the address bar and replace "" with "" and hit Enter. That will take you to the correct location.
(Cindy Weber, South Central Library System )

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Martha Speaks Read Aloud Book Club Kits Now Available

print material covers
Bring the excitement of MARTHA SPEAKS to your library! The MARTHA SPEAKS Read-Aloud Book Club creates a fun environment for young kids to read and talk about books, and to learn about the many positive roles dogs play in our lives. A limited number of Martha Speaks Read Aloud Book Club kits are available for distribution to public libraries. These kits are free of charge. Please email to receive your kit.

The Martha Speaks Read Aloud Book Club introduces children ages 4 to 7 to an engaging collection of dog-themed books and activities designed to foster their love of words and books. For more information visit

Email to receive a full kit containing:

 Leaders Guide

 Community Guide Pages


 Ten Books

 Sign-up Sheet, Flyer, Poster

 Martha Speaks Stickers and Pencils

 “Paws” stamp