You can do it: the Dummies Guide to Blogging

coverOver a pile of books that included two mosaic titles, a make-your-own-jewellery manual and the idiots guide to felt animals or some such thing, a customer  asked if I had any hobbies. This is a question I dread – reading so does not count and meeting friends in coffee shops only works if I’m writing my next novel there – thanks J.K.Rowling. Then it came to me in a nanosecond:

I blog.

It’s a terrific little hobby, it really is. You can do it anywhere and anytime – post earthquake it  turns out that 3am is quite good. There’s no law against doing it, and it involves no outlay on expensive equipment that then lies around gathering dust; i-Pads way off to one side here if you will! If you blog for the library it even comes with its own built- in buddy so you are guaranteed an audience of at least one. My buddy is large and lovely and lives in Lyttelton. I wish his name was Lionel – that would make a really bloggy sentence.

In fact the only thing I don’t like about blogging is the word: blog. Why didn’t we get bling – an altogether better word. Whereas “I blog” falls out of the mouth like a dead pachyderm, “I bling” takes wing and flies. Right now is the point at which my buddy will be anxiously scanning for links – aka computer witchcraft.  So here they are:

So how do you get started? Dead easy, scroll up to the top of this blog post. Click on ‘Leave a comment’. Write something. Click ‘Post comment’ and voila – you have taken your first step in the blog world. Well done!

Join the 2011 Reading Crusade and win

Reading crusade logo

If your children love rugby and reading then they should join the 2011 Reading Crusade.  It’s a fun reading competition run by Christchurch City Libraries and the Crusaders rugby team.

Any children in Christchurch between 5-13 years can join in.  All they have to do is read six books, fill out a reading log and get a parent, teacher  or librarian to register their reading. Full details are available on the library website.

There are heaps of prizes, including weekly Reading Crusade Challenges on the library’s Christchurch Kids blog. Join in today!

Be your own librarian: a help-yourself guide

CoverLibrarians have a term for helping people find something good to read – “reader’s advisory”. We also have a bunch of fantastic resources we use to find things. Now we’re going to share these not-so-secret tools of the trade with you. So if you’re the kind of person who likes to be left to your own devices when you use the library, then check out this treasure trove of great places to go for book suggestions:

Words for Christchurch: Atka Reid and Hana Schofield

coverSisters Atka and Hana and their family were sponsored by a Christchurch family to move to Christchurch from war-torn Bosnia 18 years ago. They’ve written a book about their story, Goodbye Sarajevo, which will be published in early May by Bloomsbury UK. They sent these Words for Christchurch:

Christchurch has been home to our family.

When we first moved there from Bosnia it was the generosity and kindness of several Christchurch families that helped us through the tough times. We will always be grateful for that and Christchurch has a special place in our hearts.

We wrote Goodbye Sarajevo at the Christchurch Central Library. The book launch was scheduled to be in Christchurch next month, at Scorpio book shop, but due to the earthquake that’s been moved to Auckland. We do hope that once Scorpio is up and running again we will be able to celebrate the occasion with our Christchurch family and friends.

Our thoughts are with the people of Christchurch where most of our family still live. Our hearts go out to many people who have lost their loved ones, their homes and livelihoods and we hope that our story can give them a glimpse of hope and some comfort in these times of hardship. To quote one of the reviews:

Goodbye Sarajevo is a beautiful story that turns from sorrow to happiness, redemption, restoration. Goodbye Sarajevo shows that sometimes out of dire circumstances, new lives, new beginnings are possible.

Best wishes,
Atka and Hana

Get ya geek on: Really useful resources for NCEA Media Studies

CoverAre you doing NCEA Media Studies this year? We can help!

So where did we find these great resources? On The Pulse, the library’s website for teens.