Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Week 7: June 28th and 30th

The practicum is halfway over. I only have 4 more weeks and I feel like I have so much more to do in such a short amount of time. Shelia and I went over my intern orientation packet and we have covered just about everything we can cover in the four page packet (save the budget, which she does later in the year). We went through some of the books she is trying to sell on Abebooks.com. It is a time consuming process akin to cataloging. Shelia has an Abe Books account for the library and sells books that are duplicates in the library. We took some and started to post them online. It is a lot like cataloging in that you have to put the physical description of the book on the site as well as write up something about the book so that it will sell. Shelia asked me what the pros and cons of selling books online is versus selling books in a book sale on site. One site is a little easier because there is less time and effort being put into selling the book. You just unpack the book, put it on a table and sell it. Online, however, you reach a very specific and a wider audience. At a "table" sale, you may be able to get more for a book, whereas online you are competing with other sellers and may have to settle for less in order to sell your book. All in all, if you have time, Abe books may be the way to go, but with staffing and time, a table sale may also be the better solution. Librarians just have to weigh their options, and their volunteer help.
I also worked on the Artist files this week. The library had a bit of a back log of artist files because we were waiting for the hanging folders I ordered to come in. Well, they finally came in and I sorted through the stack of materials and made artist files for them to be put in the storage room in the library. The artist files are incredibly fascinating. It is a massive filing system with information about artists gathered through the years. It could be correspondence, news clippings, mailings about an exhibition or a small booklet or chap book containing the artist's work. The files are kept mainly for artists that would not be in the general collection of the library, like more modern artists. It is incredibly educational and interesting. I could get lost in all of that information. 
I am really looking forward to this week. In conjunction with the book club meeting this month (The Masque of Africa) on Thursday Dr. Fagaly, the curator of African art, is going to do a walk through of the exhibit Ancestors of Congo Square with the group. I am really excited about that and can't wait to share what I learn!

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