Friday, November 14, 2008

Frappy's Challenge - Write A Novel In A Month

A few days ago some friends told me about National Novel Writing Month.
People from all over the world take the month of November to write a 50,000 word novel.

The idea intrigued me. I already had an idea for a novel, albeit a heavily autobiographical one. I already had a few characters in my head. Why not go for it? What was stopping me?

Fear. Fear of Failure. Fear of Success. I'm tired of being Afraid. I'm going for it.

So, here I am only 4,000 words into my novel when I should be half way there.
But I'm not giving up. I work best under pressure, always have.

You'll hear from me along the way, as I curse myself for ever telling anyone I was going to do this.

Gotta go - I have writing to do and none of this will go toward my word count!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist

Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist (which was released as a major motion picture this weekend) brings together two popular young adult authors for one unforgettable night in Manhattan.*

Nick is freshly dumped and sees his ex-girlfriend in a club when he asks Norah to be his girlfriend for 5 minutes. Serious, straight edge Norah takes him up on the offer and sheds some emotional baggage in the process. Both have been hurt before, but decide to take another chance.

Think High Fidelity for Teens: Nick and Norah may be the main characters, but the music is the star. Norah realizes no matter what happens one thing is clear - they are musical soul mates. And Nick realizes that it's not about sex or a fast car, but those exciting moments of hand-holding. Here is a playlist I've put together with songs from the book. You won't notice any of these songs on the movie soundtrack, but they are at the heart of the novel.

* Note that this book is for older teens because of language and sexual situations.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Relax and Reflect

I finally finished! I feel like I've learned a lot from this program and I would definitely take part in another one. I was familiar with some of the items, but a refresher is always helpful. My favorite discoveries were Overdrive, Hulu, and Google Earth. I have worked with RSS Feeds before, but after this program I realized that it's something I will use on a regular basis.

The biggest challenge for me was time. As a substitute librarian it is hard to complete an assignment once a week when you're not actually scheduled. My supervisor was very helpful and set aside time for me to catch up. I appreciated this greatly and it was refreshing to see the library take this program seriously. While I felt like the last assignments were somewhat of a blur, I know that I can take my experiences, apply them to my job and as a result, be a better librarian.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


The Gaming assignment was fun. I ended up playing Scrabble and I won!
I can see why it would be useful for librarians to be involved in the gaming community. It's true that teens won't need to come to us for help, but their parents might as well as novices. In the meantime, I've found a new activity on the web that is addictive. Great.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Maps and Geotagging

Google Earth is fascinating. I could spend all day exploring this site, but there's no time! I first looked at this when it was in the Beta format and I seem to remember that you could get more detail. I am actually glad that has changed, because it brought up all kinds of privacy issues. I guess that's the former news librarian in me!

Online Applications and Tools

I found this assignment very interesting. It is good to know that there are other options out there besides Microsoft. Will it replace Microsoft? I certainly doubt it. I also wonder about Mac compatibility, which is something I will have experiment with at home.

I am a substitute librarian and I think that Google Docs or Zoho would be a great place for me to store work documents. That way I will be able to access items no matter what computer I happen to be working from.


This is my first attempt at an avatar. I'm not sure how much it looks like me, but it was fun to do. It reminds me of playing with paper dolls as a child.

I've seen Ms. Dewey before. I know that other librarians have problems with her, but I find her amusing. A few years back I become obsessed with the Subservient Chicken. It was a viral marketing campaign for Burger King and you could get the chicken to perform different actions, such as playing baseball or doing the moonwalk. However, if you tried to make the chicken do something offensive he would walk toward the screen and shake his finger in a scolding manner. Of course, I would never ask him such things.

Search Engines

I admit it, Google is usually the first place I go when I need a search engine.
Is it always the best place to go? No, but it's something I'm comfortable with and I know my way around. I should try other search engines and this assignment has given me some good places to start. I've been to the UC Berkeley site before and it is very informative.

One Search Engine that I use often for personal use is GoodSearch. It is a search engine powered by Yahoo! but it allows you to earn money for a charity. Every search you make in GoodSearch generates a penny for the charity of your choice. So now I can search the web for fun AND feel like I'm contributing! :)

Image Generators

I had fun with the image generators until it was time to post my results.
I could not download the image to my blog, no matter how many times I went back to try and correct my error. After awhile, it took away all the fun. :(
Trust me when I say that I came up with some very witty signs.


I found the process of checking out and downloading a book quite easy. I was pleased with the selection and I like that you can burn the books to CD. I have a long commute and often listen to books on CD. I am pleased with this service and hope that our patrons take advantage of it!


This is my first experience with and I could instantly see its usefulness. I will have to spend more time with it, but this is definitely something I will be using. As a substitute librarian who works in many different branches, I want to make my favorites portable. I also enjoy the social aspect of it and I think I can learn from others that have tagged before me.

Instant Messaging

I have dabbled with instant messaging, but I must admit I have resisted it and will continue to do so. Part of the problem is that I am a substitute librarian and I don't want to download an instant messaging program onto some one's computer. I don't have an instant messaging program on my computer at home because I just can't take another form of instant communication. I have voicemail, text messaging and seven different e-mail addresses. I feel like instant messaging will take me over the edge!

I have used instant messaging in a library setting. I used to do virtual reference and chatting was our mode of communication. It is a valuable tool and one that I would not resist in a work setting. But I am steering clear of it in my personal life. I need some time away from technology.


I remember first hearing about wikis and the fear it sparked in librarians. Anyone can change content! Students will use wikipedia and all of their research will be wrong! I attended a lecture that Jimmy Wales gave at my local library in Florida (he lives in St. Petersburg). He assured the librarians in the crowd that he didn't want students using wikipedia as a "source" for papers. As he pointed out, students (especially in college) shouldn't be citing an encyclopedia as a source anyway.

There was an attempt to start a wiki at the newspaper I worked at in Florida. The idea was for the whole newsroom to contribute to it. There was hesitance from the old-timers and it seemed like only a few people devoted an enormous amount of time to it. Perhaps the time wasn't right. I see the usefulness of wikis and feel that libraries will continue to use them in the future.

YouTube, Hulu and Fancast — streaming video

I am quite familiar with YouTube. I was able to find both informational library entries and entertaining ones. I think it's a great place to put various talks from conferences. I also viewed a government informational video on librarians from 1946 and a music video that featured librarians who killed a patron by crushing him in between the sliding shelves.

Before this assignment I was not familiar with Hulu and Fancast. I had no idea that there were so many television programs available to watch for free. The next time I have a desire to watch Fantasy Island I'll head right over to Hulu.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Social Networking Sites

I have to admit that I've been on MySpace for quite awhile now and it takes up way too much of my time. I intend to just quickly log on to check messages and an hour later I'm looking at a a profile for someone in Australia. On the plus side, it is a good way to keep in touch with friends and to find new (and old) music.

I'm not that thrilled with Facebook. I don't like the layout as much and I don't like that it tells you EVERYTHING that every friend is doing. Do I care that Dick and Jane just had a conversation? Do I care that Stacy just downloaded and application? And don't get me started on those applications! There are hundreds of them and they are very annoying.

My new favorite addiction is GoodReads. It's the MySpace for book lovers. I love to see what my friends are reading and I like to have a place where I can keep track of what I've read and what I want to read in the future. I come across so many interesting books during the course of a day and it's nice to have a place to compile a list.

I checked out LibraryThing and I didn't really like the interface. I was also turned off by the fee. It looks like you can only enter 200 books before they start charging a fee. GoodReads is free and I'll be sticking with that site.

Sunday, June 15, 2008


Flickr is a great site to host images, view photos that your friends and family have taken or to just peruse random things. I'm not that familiar with it because most of my family and friends use Kodak Gallery or Snapfish. But this assignment gave me a great excuse to look at the photos of my friend's son. We went to graduate school together, but now live on opposite ends of the country. I especially like this photo of him as the Little Mermaid. :)

Friday, June 13, 2008


Before I moved to Seattle I worked for a newspaper in Florida. One of my jobs was co-host of a podcast called Stuck in the '80s. My two co-hosts and I chatted about all things '80s about once a week. It was great fun, but it was hard to know if we had an audience out there. It turned out through listener mail and calls that we did and the audience was all over the world. We had Igor from the Ukraine and Six in New York and a radio show in New Zealand broadcast our podcast as well.

One of the highlights was meeting and interviewing Rick Springfield:


Saturday, May 31, 2008

Streaming Music

I went ahead and created an account with because it was a familiar site. It's a cool site with tons of music and I especially like the social aspect of the site.

One site that I've gone to for years that wasn't mentioned is - it has internet radio stations from all over the world. You want an Americana station? Music from Slovakia? Texas Polka? They've got it. It's free if you listen to some advertising or you can pay for VIP status. You can even start your own internet radio station.

RSS Feeds

I've just learned about RSS Feeds and I signed up for Bloglines. I like Bloglines a lot - it's very easy to use. I've subscribed to some feeds and I can definitely see the usefulness. I can go to one place for my feeds and updates. The down side? I guess it can be an upside as well. It's the Bloglines 1000. I could spend all day looking at the 1000. There are so many new websites to puruse. I'm not sure if I just saved myself time or created more work for myself!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Frappy Report

I had to create a blog for Web 2.0. I wanted to do this ages ago, but it seemed like such a hassle and I never had the time. This time around it was Easy. Anyone can start a blog in 5 minutes. You know what the hardest part was? Figuring out a Name. But then I remembered how a friend of mine was always clamoring for the latest "Frappy Report." My nickname is Frappy and I try to deliver the latest news in a humorous and succint way. Let's hope I don't let her down.