Today, at 7p.m., I am speaking at THE RAMSEY PUBLIC LIBRARY in Bergen County, NJ, where I grew up and now live. I am so thankful that they invited me and that I live in a place with wonderful local libraries.
Librarians rock. By and large, they are amazing sources of information. Most read constantly and pride themselves on acquiring good books and then recommending them to their visitors. As a result, a strong library system can be the difference between a wonderful work of fiction getting discovered by the masses.
One of the most well read people in the mystery, thriller community is librarian and author Jeff Ayers. Track him down at the next mystery conference and ask about a book that you enjoyed which no one has been able to talk to you about. Chances are, Jeff will know it. Chances are, he'll even personally know the author.
The library was where I discovered my own love of reading. My mom would take me several times a month to the TEANECK PUBLIC LIBRARY to stack up on new books. I loved holing away in a corner of the building, surrounded by the sweet, faintly earthy smell of paper and ink, and getting lost in a fictional universe for hours.
When I had my first interview for BusinessWeek, a magazine where I would later work for several years, it was in the Teaneck Public Library. I applied right out of college, before I had enough experience to warrant the job. The editor decided that I deserved some encouragement and met with me at the library to talk writing, journalism, and books.
Now a mom, I take my kids to the TENAFLY PUBLIC LIBRARY every month. They love picking out new books, though they have a bad habit of pretending they own them and integrating them into their own bookcases. The children's librarian there has turned my kids on to some wonderful series that I would not have otherwise known about.
Do you visit your local library? What is your favorite library memory?