Librarians are skilled at changing with the times, and now it’s time for me to change. I’m not leaving Booklist; you’ll still find me happily writing reviews and features in the audio section, but I will no longer be writing this column. For the past 12 years, I’ve shared my pleasure in the art of readers’ advisory, offering tips and trying to give librarians a foundation from which to create their own readers’-advisory service. Looking back, I realize how fortunate I was to have a platform from which to share my thoughts, and I’m forever grateful to Bill Ott and Booklist for giving me that. As I step down from this column, I hope you’ll indulge me one last time, as I mention four things we don’t have to do to practice readers’ advisory and four things we should always do in that same pursuit.Joyce is my colleague and friend but she was my teacher first. Everything I have learned, began with her. That means every thing you learn from me, has it’s roots with Joyce.
When she told me she was leaving her column behind she was a little sad [as was I], but she also knew it was time. As she told me, this column needs to be written by someone who works on the front lines at a library every single day helping readers. As much as she still has to teach all of us, Joyce knew it was time to pass this torch.
Please click through to read the entire column-- her four things you don’t have to do to be good at RA and the four things you must do. But first, let me share her final paragraph which could read like a thesis statement for these Call to Actions and really everything I do here on RA for All.
Our job is to ensure that readers feel safe and comfortable talking about the stories they appreciate and requesting materials for their leisure time. We share titles and permission to read and enjoy anything and everything. We offer free access to the world of stories, which provide food for our spirits, our emotions, and our intellects. My last piece of advice: read, enjoy, and share the pleasure.This is a Call to Action we can all get behind.