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Monday, October 17, 2016

Library celebrates their Friends Oct. 16-22

Thirty five years ago, the Friends of the Stillwater Public Library had their first used book sale, and they have been sweating and toiling every year since to make sure that our community has everything its library needs. This week, we join together to celebrate our Friends along with other libraries across the nation who are celebrating “Friends of the Library Week” Oct. 16-22. I am pretty sure, though, that our Friends are the very best in the nation.
Twice a year, the Friends hold giant used books sales. The work involved requires hours and hours of labor all year long. Each week, the Friends haul, move, sort, categorize, inspect, and box hundreds of books donated by the community along with ones removed from our collection. They spend an intense several weeks preparing for the sales, and it takes a ton of Friends to pull off each event.
The results of their efforts can be seen throughout the library: huge numbers of books, digital resources, pieces of equipment and furniture, training for librarians, all of our programming and so much more. If you come into the library this week, you’ll see everything their hard works has given us marked with a bright pink sign. It is amazing how much they contribute and what we wouldn’t have if not for our Friends. Here are just a few of their recent contributions:
  • Wandoo, the summer reading program tracker
  • Library Thing for Libraries, the service that lets us see reviews and images in our catalog
  • Public computers
  • The notary service
  • A large portion of our eBooks
  • All of the book club kits we purchase
  • The Great Gatsby/Fire in Beulah series
  • Book with CDs for adults with developmental disabilities who are beginning readers
  • ALL adult, teen, and children’s summer AND year round programming
Personally, I know without a doubt that there is no way I could do my job if it weren’t for the support of the Friends.
So this week, please take the time to say “thanks” to the Friends you know and to the people you see in the library always wheeling around beige carts overflowing with books. Better yet, why not become a Friend yourself and let us give you some love too! Friends memberships are $10 per year, or you can get a lifetime membership for just $100. Joining is easy-just pick up a Friends envelope at the Checkout Desk.
The big benefit of being a Friend is getting into the Thursday preview at the fall and spring book sales. You can also sign up to help sort books throughout the year and help at the book sales. But---the real benefit is knowing you are helping provide free access to information and reading resources for your entire community. Thank you Friends!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Starting Your Small Business

On Saturday, Oct. 15, at 10 a.m.-12 p.m., Brad Rickelman, Assistant Director of the Center for Business Development at Meridian Technology Center, will teach a weekend session of “Beginning Your Business” at the Stillwater Public Library.

The Center for Business Development has been partnering with the library to provide a beginning business class the last several years. Rickelman hopes it will help people who want to start a business understand the processes that need to be completed before opening.

“One of the most common errors is taking big steps before your have done the appropriate planning,” said Rickelman. “This class will help prospective business owners avoid that mistake.”

Students in the class will learn about common errors in beginning a business, how to research and develop the market for products or services and how to plan financial needs.

“Starting Your Business" is free and open to the public. Registration is required and will be taken until Oct. 13 at 5 p.m. To sign-up, go to the library's website at, email or call 405-372-3633 x 8106.

Stillwater has a network of organizations that assist business owners, including the Center for Business Development at Meridian Technology Center which provides business consulting and coaching, business incubation and networking and education events. Other resources include:

  • OSU Payne County Extension, which hosts monthly meetings and learning opportunities for home based businesses.
  • Oklahoma Small Business Development Center at OSU, which provides entrepreneurs with professional business consulting at no cost, including management training and vital information they need to grow and succeed.
  • Stillwater Public Library, which provides hard copy books and eBooks on business and management subjects and the Small Business online database, which provides thousands of articles, videos, and books on all manner of business.

Library hours are Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The Stillwater Public Library is located at 1107 S. Duck St. (the corner of Duck and 12th Ave.). 

Monday, September 26, 2016

Books to Film

The current period has been called the pinnacle of television. So many amazing shows have been created in the past few years, while it seems like it has been harder and harder to find a decent movie in the theaters to watch. I am guessing that the screenplay writers are flocking to television, leaving very few good or original stories for the movies.

Since the recent rise of stellar television writing, there has been an explosion of novels being made into movies. Making novels into movies isn’t new, of course, but it certainly wasn’t as popular as it is now. Before, if the library did a current “Book to Movie” display, we’d have a handful of books to put out. Now, I just finished an article that listed almost 100 books currently being adapted to film! Many of those books are older book club classics. No, the movie is NOT going to be as good as the movie, but we love it because it brings readers back to read the original book. Here are some of upcoming films:

·        The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers - Two soldiers are taken under the wing of an experienced sergeant in Iraq. Stars Benedict Cumberbatch.

·        The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski – A mute young man runs off with his dog to try to cope with his father’s death. Oprah Winfrey and Tom Hanks are producing this classic “Oprah Book Club” pick.

·        The Devil in the White City by Eric Larson – The true story of the 1893 World’s Fair, its architect and the serial killer who used the fair to kill. Leonardo DiCaprio stars and Scorsese directs.

·        The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls – The memoir of Wall’s life and her strange upbringing and family. Brie Larson from “The Room,” stars.

·        Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter – Follows a 1960s Hollywood love affair.

·        The Zookeeper's Wife by Diane Ackerman (partial book club kit) – The true story of the keepers at a Polish zoo who used the zoo to help save people from the Nazis. Jessica Chastain stars.

·        The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows – An English writer is drawn to small island and the islanders life under Nazi occupation. Kate Winslet likely stars.

·        The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern – Two magicians compete against each other in a mysterious circus while also falling in love.

·        The Emperor's Children by Claire Messud (partial book club kit) – Follows three college friends after 9/11.

Be ready to see what will likely be “okay” movies, but then hurry into the library so you can read the amazing books or book club kits.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Looking for a few good reads

Just a week until the booksale! Once again, the Friends of the Library will have THOUSANDS of books to purchase for just .25 to $1!  And it’s all sales tax free!

The sale begins with the "Members Only Preview" on Thursday, Sept. 22, from 5 to 8 p.m. The sale continues Friday, noon-8 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m. We end on Sunday with the $1 per bag sale. You don’t want to miss it!

And speaking of really good books (which I was, because the book sale has tons of really awesome books), I have encountered several recently that I thought I’d share.

·         “Behind Closed Doors” by B.A. Paris. Jack and Grace seem like the perfect couple. He is rich and successful and she is the perfect housekeeper and entertainer. Very quickly the reader sees that something is very wrong. Jack is an absolute monster, and a few other characters start to see red flags as well.  Does Grace stay with him and will she ever get away? The first third of this book is really very average. It sort of drags and sets up a bunch of impossible scenarios. However, if you will just let yourself go along with the story, then your patience pays off. The last half of the book zooms and is filled with heart pounding tension.

If you’ve read this book and are shopping the book sale for similar stories, choose books like any early titles from Mary Higgins Clark, “Good Girl” by Mary Kubica or “Before I go to Sleep” by S.J. Watson.

·         “Be Frank with Me” by Julia Johnson. Alice is called from New York to California to be the personal assist to Mimi, a middle aged writer who wrote one hit classic and hasn’t been able to produce anything since. Alice is put in charge of Mimi’s adolescent son Frank, who is exceptionally precocious and odd. The story is fine, but the reason to read this book is Frank. He is one of the most interesting and endearing characters to come along in a very long time.

If you’ve read this book and are shopping the book sale for similar stories, choose books like “A Man Called Ove” and “Britt Marie was Here” by Fredrik Backman, The Mitford series by Jan Karon or “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time” by Mark Haddon

·         “Watching Edie” by Camilla Way. Single and lonely Edie has just had a baby that she can’t care for. Heather is a best friend from Edie’s past who comes along just at the right time to help her. You’ll think this is just another rehashing of “Single White Female,” but you’d be wrong. Like “Behind Closed Doors,” this story of psychological suspense has rewards its readers with a great ending.

For a similar book, look for “In the Blood” by Lisa Unger or “Jack of Spades” by Joyce Carol Oates.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Do you have YOUR card?

“Library Card Sign-Up Month” begins Sept. 1 and starts a flurry of librarian activity as we try to get as many people signed up for library cards as possible. Library staff members will be out and about, all over Stillwater, encouraging you to get your free ticket to tens of thousands of books and eBooks, audios and eAudios, DVDs, and language learning, car repair and genealogy databases.

We’ll also be going out to businesses with our L.I.B. program. Businesses can become certified “Library Improved Businesses” by supporting reading through letting us come to sign up employees for library cards. Encouraging your staff to read has many benefits for your business. Studies on reading now show that the activity:

·        Lowers blood pressure and increases life span (Fewer sick days?)
·        Increases empathy and reduces stress (Better customer service!)
·        Increases motivation, goal reaching, and memory (Better productivity!)

·        In addition, children read more when they see their parents read, which means that your employees’ children could reap all of the same rewards!

If your business would like to schedule a L.I.B. visit, email us at

Library staff will also be out and about at community events. One event we are attending is the Aging Advocates Committee’s “Golden Ticket Resource Fair” on Thursday, Sept. 15, 9 a.m.-Noon, at the First Presbyterian Church located at Sixth and Duck.  The fair includes over 30 organization and business booths which will provide all sorts of excellent information, resources and opportunities on healthy aging.  The Oklahoma Lions Mobile Health Screening van will be there, along with healthy refreshments and door prizes.

Be sure to stop at the library’s booth to get a library card and to find out about the collections and services that will help your journey into the Golden Years be healthier and lots more fun!