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I feel like every job has its own kind of stereotypes, and I mine is not an exception to the rule. I am a librarian and I hear the same stereotypes over and over, which leads me to that post. I want to share with you 3 things that librarians actually do not do, in order for you to have a clearer idea of the things we actually do. Are you ready? Go!
Read all of the books they mention
We just do not read all of the books we mention. Of course, we read some of them because librarians (hopefully) love reading books, but we just can’t read all of them. I read around 10 books a month and I am one of the lucky ones, but I have colleagues who read around one book a month and that is perfectly fine. What we do, however, is reading information on the book on dedicated websites in order to better know it and be able to recommend it to the right reader. It is our little secret, do not tell anyone!
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Read while working
And no, we are not paid to read books (how cool would that be!), we get paid to organize books and recommend them (among other things, click here for a full “day in the life” post) to readers. Thus, all the books I read are read on my free time. Sometimes, I must admit that I do read books at work but only picture books as to organize them in the right box, I need to know what they are about. However, I never read novels or documentaries at work, I just do not have time!
Understand all of readers’ references
Of course, we try our best to know about most of the books we offer but we just can’t know everything about everything. Even though we like to say we are like “human search engines”, we are not and we have our own personal tastes. I personally love YA and Middle Grades but when I am asked about comics, I struggle quite a lot. We need to know a little bit of everything (that is clearly part of the job), but we can’t answer every question and understand every reference readers make to books. Thus, we usually ask better suited colleagues to answer these questions, and there is absolutely no shame to have about it.
I hope this was somehow helpful for you to understand the job of a librarian. I feel like so many stereotypes surround it and even though I find them to be quite funny, I love the idea of sharing a more true image of the job with you.
What do you think about librarians? How do you think we spend our days? I am so curious to know!