or, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to Fear and Loathing at a Public Library Reference Desk

What Do To When Authors Die

   March 13th, 2015 Brian Herzog

Terry Pratchett died this week, and I, like many people, were saddened.

I came to the Discworld books later in my life, sort of by accident (which is the best way to come across books like the Discworld books), and to say I liked them is an understatement. It was more like the worlds and characters had just been waiting for me and were happy to have me turn up.

It wasn't until later that I realized I had already read some Pratchett, without knowing it. His book, Good Omens, co-written with Neil Gaiman, was another I had inadvertently come to on my own, on the shelf in an independent book shop in Yellow Springs, Ohio. I can't say it changed my life, but I thoroughly enjoyed it, and was also introduced to Neil Gaiman that way. I somehow missed the introduction to Terry Pratchett, but since I got there in the end, I suppose it is okay.

Perhaps because of this, but perhaps also just because they are similar and the connection is logical, I have always linked Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman in my head.

So when I came across the following line while reading Neil Gaiman's Trigger Warning today (specifically in the story, The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury), I couldn't help but be reminded of Terry Pratchett's death:

I sometimes imagine I would like my ashes to be scattered in a library. But then the librarians would just have to come in early the next morning to sweep them up again, before the people got there.

Very appropriate on many levels, but it also seems that there is hardly a tribute fitting enough for such a creative and prolific writer as Terry Pratchett.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Hi, I’m Google. And I’m a Librarian.

   August 25th, 2011 Brian Herzog

This photo (of the carpet at the Gungahlin Public Library in Canberra, Australia) has been making the rounds, but succinctly sums up why librarians aren't going anywhere:

Google can bring you back 100,000 answers, a librarian can bring you back the right one. Neil Gaiman

Thanks Chris.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Coraline: The Movie

   February 10th, 2009 Brian Herzog

coraline movie posterI'm a big fan of Neil Gaiman, and subscribe to his blog feed.

It was through his blog, in fact, that I learned about his book Coraline, and purchased it for the library so I could read it.

Then, more recently, he's been talking about the movie release. After watching this trailer on the blog, featuring him, I went to see the movie.

It goes without saying that Neil is just cool. But on top of that, how great is it to have an author talk about and promote his work, not only in a very personal way through the blog, but also in a very personal way through the very impersonal medium of movies? To wit:

Not that this movie would need much promotion, but a library could do a movie-to-book-to-other-books-by-this-author tie-in quite easily by embedding this trailer into a page on their website and also including an annotated listing of his other books, and link to those books in their catalog.

Oh yeah, and the movie was great. Different than the book (from what I remember), but great in its own right.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,