Thursday, June 13, 2013

24 Book Picks on the Library Profession

For a long time, I thought about becoming a librarian. The seed was indelibly planted during my years of working on a part-time basis at campus libraries in undergraduate school; it was a job I truly enjoyed. I found the daily variety, in both tasks and patrons, stimulating. However, upon college graduation, I decided to pursue a career in publishing. I found working in publishing to be exciting and at times gratifying, but the desire to return to the stacks persisted.

A book on the library profession that truly inspired me.
Image via

Changing careers from publishing to librarianship went from something I pondered to something I wanted to pursue after I read two pivotal articles. One ran in the Spring 2004 issue of Bust. It's titled "Revenge of the Librarian: With their own action figures, 'zines, and websites, a new breed of librarians is closing the book on a stodgy old stereotype." The magazine's new look at an old profession inspired me. The other article that got me excited about librarianship was in the July 8, 2007, edition of the New York Times. Titled "A Hipper Crowd of Shushers," it profiled librarians in their 20s and 30s, women and men, who were doing cool and admirable things, such as engaging in social activism, creating zines and comic books, and being active in social media. Reading it, I thought, "This is something I really want to be a part of."

Later, I embarked on a series of informational interviews with those active in the library profession in order to get an insider's view on what it's really like. Then I picked up the book This Book Is Overdue! How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All by Marilyn Johnson, and that was it. My mind was made up. I knew I wanted to go to library school.

Johnson's book isn't among the 24 books on the library profession culled from WorldCat by Valerie Hawkins. Still the list is worth checking out if you're seriously considering a career in librarianship. Whether you're looking to become a school library media specialist (New on the Job: A School Library Media Specialist's Guide to Success), an academic librarian (How to Stay Afloat in the Academic Library Job Pool), an academic or public library director (The Next Leadership: Attributes of Academic and Public Library Directors), or a public librarian (Neal-Schuman Directory of Public Library Job Descriptions), there is a book on this list for you. Also covered is how to pay for library school (How to Pay for Your Degree in Library & Information Studies 2010-2012), which, of course, is crucial. To see all 24 books on library careers, go to this WorldCat link. Thank you, Valerie, for putting this list together!

No comments:

Post a Comment