But Denning works for a large library system and is a national expert on displays. Most of you out there work at much smaller libraries and you do a little of everything, trying to tread water with your day to day duties without much time to think about your own growth. That is why I am also featuring Alissa Williams and her resolutions today.
Alissa Williams is the Director of Morton Public Library District, a small library near Peoria, IL. Williams, like most small public library directors, wears a lot of hats in her library and throughout her community. But, as she told me in her email, she normally enjoys seeing my resolutions, but hasn't made any of her own for a few years. This year, she wanted to change that and give herself some goals to strive for, both professionally as a reader and personally. While I loved Denning's advice about passive RA and think every single one of my readers can take something away from her points, I think Willams' resolutions provide an excellent counterpoint, a mix of professional and personal goals that everyone can relate to. For example, as you can see below, Williams has goals that take into account her other goals, she has thought about things she used to do as part of her job, but does not anymore, and she takes personal goals and makes a resolution to turn the planned reading into a work product for her patrons. These are intentional resolutions based on an assessment of her own reading over the last few years, but they are also extremely specific to her personally and her community. Together, the three resolution posts [mine included] offer a range of examples and give you, my readers, no excuse not to craft something for yourself. Thank you to Williams and Denning for sharing their resolutions and I hope this mini series of posts will inspire the rest of you to really think about your reading goals for 2020.
Alissa Williams' Reading Resolutions, 2020
1. I want to read 8 more books in my presidential reading project. In 2014, I set a personal goal of reading biographies of all US presidents (in order) and once I finally stopped procrastinating on reading Team of Rivals I've made a lot of progress (thanks to those mostly forgettable one-term gilded age presidents).
2. I'd like to read 50 pre pubs and have at least one annotation selected for Library Reads. On average I read about 30 prepubs per year, but this year I want to be more intentional about it. And as I was thinking about this goal - I think for the library I'd like to produce a summer reading guide (based on all these prepubs I'm going to read).
3. I want to read 12 young adult books. I used to lead a young adult book group at the library (for adults) and I really miss this genre, plus it serves as a nice palate cleanser from the president bios I read.
4. I'd also like to complete 10 read alouds with my daughters. Last year we did 8 and I'd like to make this a more regular part of our routine - we're consistent when we have a book we're engaged it, but if I don't have the next book ready we can get out of the habit.
5. Finally, I want to have a "summer of harry potter" I borrowed this idea from Gretchin Rubin (who in her 19 for 2019 had a summer of proust). It's been 15 years since I read these and now that my oldest is wanting to read them I thought it would be a fun summer reading project.
Becky Spratford is a Readers' Advisor in Illinois specializing in serving patrons ages 13 and up. She trains library staff all over the world on how to match books with readers through the local public library. She runs the critically acclaimed RA training blog RA for All. She is under contract to provide content for EBSCO’s NoveList database and writes reviews for Booklist and content for Library Journal. Becky is also known for her work with horror readers as the author of The Reader’s Advisory Guide to Horror, Second Edition [ALA Editions, 2012] and is currently hard at work on the 3rd Edition. She is a proud member of the Horror Writers Association and currently serves as the Association’s Secretary and organizer of their annual LIbrarians’ Day. You can follow Becky on Twitter @RAforAll.