Category Archives: Library Science

Back from a librarian vacation of sorts…

I apologize for the long gap in posts here, I have been busy working full-time (finally!) and studying for my master’s program in library science, and I did realize from the get-go that I wasn’t the best blogger… Surely we have some new ace webpages out there now, from the time Bogaert’s book was published (August) to Christmas. Speaking of which, I hope everyone’s holiday(s) have been just wonderful! I have yet another four-day weekend before me for New Year’s so I will be catching up on some reading and will hopefully have some reviews for you very soon.

AVEN Homepage

By now you have most certainly seen the updated design for AVEN (which may look a bit like my idea: “Proposed Idea for AVEN Website Re-design”?) that definitely brings the site together much better than before. I have found a couple broken links, such as the “Learn More” button when accessed from the Forums homepage, and the link to Comments (“Updated 28 Dec · 0 comments”) from a user’s profile page. Nevertheless, I think the design is well on its way to utilizing AVEN to its fullest extent. Feel free to respond here about the AVEN upgrade.

Another topic I wanted to address is AsexualNews.com. Most sites in the asexual community are personal sites such as blogs or Tumblrs. Whether you consider yourself a member of the asexual community, how would rate the news on AsexualNews.com? Where do you get your asexual news, if you seek it out at all? AVEN forum thread regarding this issue: “What is Your Opinion of AsexualNews.com?”

Advertisements

Celebrate Banned Books Week

How do I celebrate my American nationality?

  • By challenging social norms!
  • By voting in elections!
  • By reading censored books!

As individuals, we have the freedom to read whatever we choose, and as librarians, we should fight censorship as much as humanly possible. Censorship kills knowledge and information centers like libraries house knowledge. Differing opinions held within one facility are what challenge students and raise the consciousness of the reader. Let the reader choose what they want to read, just as you would want to choose for yourself. Celebrate Banned Books Week!

I also want to apologize for the lack of posts! School and work have both taken precedence in my life and I’m still striving to find that perfect balance.

Proposed Idea for AVEN Website Re-design

Designed by the Asexual Librarian.

When I was compiling my blogroll here, I was able to take in how different asexual websites provide different media or a unique perspective. On this blog, the links are cataloged for the mere convenience of the reader, but I have also collected them for the purpose of research.

Part of library and information science is to not only know how to access information but also how understand its organization. Thus I am proposing a new design for the AVEN website.

AVEN currently states on its front page that it is in part “a large archive of resources on asexuality.” Therefore, why not make it a more centralized location for all of the ace material currently available on the Web? By that, I mean containing access to blogs, media, academic research, psychological studies, discussions, news, visibility, activism, wiki changes, forum posts, pride information, etc., many of which I found on various online sources.

It’s valuable to have the diversity and intellectual freedom that the internet provides us with, however, AVEN was intended to collect much of this and has not kept up with updating it. While that is a daunting task, it is a necessity for newcomers in the community, as well as for the professionals we are trying to establish a report with. AVEN has so many members, many of whom create new forum threads to try to find said asexuality information that has not been properly cataloged. I am proposing a home page design which can be set up by media or subject type.

First of all, this is merely a mockup, an example. I did not experiment with the fonts or any design beyond that of the basic placement of items around the page. It’s simply an idea, and nothing else. (So please do not focus on the lack of detail; it’s not the important part.)

I tried to organize information into a logic setup, including links on the home page that are not currently accessible from there. I expanded this menu on the left side of the page to show how I might organize (and add) various sub-pages of AVEN. I added a few more ideas even though I realize much of the text on AVEN has not been edited in a long while.

As for the home page content, under each heading, I used some filler text and inserted some examples of appropriate links that are already out there, such as including the latest post from The Asexual Sexologist under Research. These are just simple examples off the top of my head.

On the overall design level, I thought the asexual flag would help reinforce the importance of the asexual community via symbolism. I wanted to find something more updated and interactive, for asexuals and non-asexuals alike. And this is merely an example, so mind you, all the text is filler. We are able to place any news or information here that would benefit the community. There is much more we could do.

My Tip for Job Seekers

This economy has been rough. We have all had, or known someone who has had, trouble finding or maintaining a job. I recently got contacted by a contracting firm for a temp job, and although it’s an amazing opportunity for me, it’s been tough along the way. So what have I been doing all this time besides working odd minimum wage jobs? While polishing my resume, of course. This is the most crucial advice I can give to those of you who are still frustrated and looking. Visit your library to find materials on writing for your resume and searching for jobs. Use this time to edit your resume, create your portfolio, and acquire recommendation letters, all while you may be back living with your parents and saving up all your loose change. The hard work will pay off soon!

Useful Link: 100 Great Resume Words

New Perspective Needed on Libraries

While working at the library the other day, I noticed a group of younger patrons walk by and scoff at the sign for the teen section. It did break my heart a little because I care so much about the library and I understand how vital such an institution is to a community. It seems that many people are sadly still in one mode of thinking or the other in regard to library usage: it’s either nerdy or it’s not. While this is basically the foundation for the latest “Geek the Library” campaign, I realized that we should not have that thought in our minds at all. If we can completely remove our bias about the library expressing our inner geek, we can see it more as a simple public institution of knowledge. We need to find a more effective way to teach people that accessing a library doesn’t have to be nerdy and it doesn’t have to not be nerdy. It just is. This line of thinking also seems to support the less educated patron who is unaware that their opinions about their library matter. The public should know that if they wish to see their library carry a particular material or hold a special program, this cannot be accomplished without their input as a citizen. Librarians too should be working with the thinking that they are not only in a career but that they are also selflessly (ideally) serving the public. We need to return to our library science roots and remember that the best outcome will arise only from an educated staff and citizenry.

The Dewey Decimal Number

According to Dewey.info, the only Dewey Decimal number I could find so far for asexuality in particular is 571.8429: “Asexual reproduction–microorganisms” and “Reproduction by asexual spores” is 571.847. This of course applies to “reproduction and growth of cells” (science) as opposed to a human sexual orientation (social science). Another page of the same source lists “sexual orientation, transgenderism, intersexuality” as 306.76, which would should include information about any sexual orientation, as the umbrella 306.7 is “sexual relations.” This is just a general thought for later exploration, but perhaps we see can expect to see asexuality materials in our libraries under 306.76 someday soon!

A Little More about Me

Although I don’t necessarily intend this blog to contain a lot of personal information (unless it’s relevant to the blog topic), I figured it would be a nice touch to add the human element and include some more brief information about myself. I currently work as a lowly library page and attend graduate school to acquire my master’s degree in library and information science. I have a specialized interest in archiving and preservation, and I plan to work somewhere in those areas. I have done and continue to do proofreading and other editorial and design work, both freelance and elsewhere. The field of library science is very close to my heart, not just because I’m a bookworm, but also because the American Library Association (ALA) has the founding principles of intellectual freedom, freedom of access to information, and serving the public equally. I believe strongly in human equality on all levels and fight for marriage equality, somewhat considering myself as part of the LGBT category. I would consider myself to be very open-minded about LGBT and other identity-related issues. I try to find the good in everyone and keep positive thoughts on my mind. When I have a bad experience, I try to take something positive from it. I volunteer when I can, in various places, serving several roles. I believe in performing one’s civil responsibilities by voting, serving jury duty, and giving back to the community via volunteering. I respect people who are constantly proactive (especially in reading/seeking information), as I think that way, we can all eventually change the world for the better.

Little Tidbits
My favorite foods are ramen noodles and cheese pizza. I love tea and I can’t function without coffee. Regardless of my asexuality, I have chosen not to have childen and I instead see my pet tortoise as akin my son. Watching my Detroit Red Wings (hockey) is the closest thing I can think of as “sexy,” with the exception of intelligent men (which is known as sapioromanticism). My favorite TV show is undoubtedly Futurama although you may find me running off with Sheldon Cooper someday. In my spare time, I do a lot of reading (big surprise, I know), studying up on classic literature and random etymology (the study of the origin of words). If I had more spare time, I would love to go hiking more and try kayaking, white-water rafting, and several other adventurous outdoor activities (including skydiving). I do occasionally run 5Ks (3.1 miles). I also love to travel but I hate the cost of gas. I live to learn; my greatest enemy in this world is ignorance.

Welcome!

Welcome! I am a hetero-romantic asexual and I am a graduate student of library and information science. Thus I plan for this blog to identify any issues from both subjects and the line wherever they may cross. This blog is neither intended to contain an extensive explanation of the current definition of asexual, nor will I be arguing its existence or any other such details. Simply put, an asexual person lacks sexual attraction. There are, however, other forms of attraction, such as aesthetic and romantic, and all asexuals may not feel comfortable in a relationship. Everyone has their own specific needs. For me, sex is just not important. For more information on asexuality, I recommend exploring AVEN, the Asexual Visibility and Education Network.

I would also like to develop a sort of collection of asexual references and perhaps even include reviews of academic articles. As of now, I have only 23 “articles” on my Kindle that relate to asexuality, not all of them academic, but I would still enjoy discussing what I find. I hope to find more articles soon, and although I may not be able to link the readers to all of them for free, I can still include the link nonetheless. I plan to continue this research throughout my blog. My hope is that academic research into asexuality increases drastically in the near future.

As of now, I’ll try to connect with other asexual blogs and LGBT-friendly sites.