May The Odds Be Ever In Your Favor
When I started this blog, I had every intention of using it to advocate for my profession; To rouse the rabble with my lofty ideals and professional prowess; to lead a quiet, bookish, but entirely effective revolution. I was pumped and primed and oh so motivated.
And then life happened.
And happened some more.
In fact, it's still happening.
But, frankly, I don't want this post to be about excuses or even about how/why I've found my way back here. Rather, I want it to be about what inspired me to don the library girl cape in the first place: Action, Advocacy and the question: If what we do is so important, why doesn't anyone but us know it?
Like a lot of libraries, mine received no funding this year. Zip. Zero. Nada. Bupkis. As upsetting as this is, I'm thankful, at least, that I had a seat at the table when this decision was made. While I hate the outcome, I'm grateful that my principal included me in the conversation - I suppose that's more than a lot of people can say. So, instead of crying in my cappuccino, I've decided to look at this lack of money like any good super hero would, as a personal challenge: Give me no money, will you??? Hmmpft! Take that, blank budgets!
One way that I'm tackling the lack of funding that I'm facing this year is by having a costume party! Honestly, I can't take credit for the idea when, in fact, I stole it from these folks. But I have to admit, it has taken on a life of its own. In addition to procuring $300 in funding for food, I'm working on a donation for several of these as prizes for the "best costumes" - but my real score comes in the form of an autographed copy of Mockingjay that I was given from our local big box bookstore to give away as the top prize.
I'm not charging any admission, rather I'm "respectfully suggesting" that everyone who attends purchase something from our bookfair -which is going on that same week. Circulation of books in the Hunger Games Trilogy (which was already huge) has gone way up and lots of kids have already spoken to me about their costumes - I can only hope we also bring in some big bucks that night.
Other ideas I have include a team trivia challenge, a "reaping" in which the students whose names are drawn receive a prize and, possibly, some readings from the books themselves... but it's all still a little fuzzy in my mind. (If you have ideas, PLEASE share them!)
In the end, as much as this event is about money, it's also - and in some ways moreso - about reading promotion and about drawing attention to the kinds of things librarians do every day to get kids excited about reading. I need this event to be a success. I need it to make money for my library. Yes. Lots and lots of money. But I also need it to a) draw readers and non-readers alike to the world of books and b) remind everyone out there who might have a say in funding libraries that our programs are worth funding. A tall order, indeed.
Sounds like a job for a super hero. :)