Thursday, April 27, 2006

High School Photo Contest 2006

Are you a budding photographer? Here's your chance to win prizes!

The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh's High School Photo Contest 2006
Beyond the Point * Pittsburgh's Rivers

Best Achievement in Photography : $500
Second Place: $250
Third Place: $100
Honorable Mention: $50
**Showstopper Award!!! $100

Each photo must have a completed entry form taped on the back. DEADLINE FOR ENTRIES: May 5, 2006.

At least ten students must participate for prizes to be awarded.

Contest Rules:
The contest is open to all high school student amateur photgraphers in grades 9-12 in Allegheny County.

Photographs will be judged on three criteria:
  • How well the photograph illustrates the theme "Beyond the Point * Pittsburgh's Rivers" How local rivers affect the life of area citizens as well as the environmental impact of industry and modern life on the rivers.
  • Artistic merit
  • Technical quality

Prints may be black-and-white or color. Photographs must be unmounted 8x10 or 5x7 and have been taken since January 1, 2006. Digitally-taken photos are acceptable, but prints must be provided. Photos must be taken in the Pittsburgh area. Photographers may enter a maximum of three images.

All entries for judging will become the property of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - Pennsylvania Department and will be part of the historic collection of local images known as the Pittsburgh Photographic Library. Entries will not be returned.

Complete the entry form and mail or hand deliver your entry or entries on or before May 5, 2006 to: Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - Pennsylvania Department * 4400 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213.

For more information, call the Pennsylvania Department at 412-622-3154 or Teen Services at 412-622-3121.

Employees of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and their families are not eligible.

Pick up an entry form at the library, or check out the Pennsylvania Department's website at for more information!


Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Cut and Paste, or an Honest Mistake?

One of the big news stories in library world (and perhaps the rest of the world as well...I'm the first to admit I'm often a bit out of touch) is the tale of a Harvard sophomore whose recently published book is coming under fire.

Basically, Kaavya Viswanathan has been accused of copying numerous passages from Megan McCafferty's Jessica Darling series (see the New Books Blog for a blatant plug of this series, which I adore) in her book How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild and Got a Life.

Since the accusation, Ms. Viswanathan has apologized, saying that she read the first two books in Megan McCafferty's series (Sloppy Firsts and Second Helpings) as a high school student and subconsciously internalized certain passages and McCafferty's overall writing style. I've got to say, some of the "similar" passages quoted in various newspaper articles, like this one from The Boston Globe are rather remarkably alike.

How Opal Mehta... is about a high school student who's entire life has revolved around doing everything right to get into Harvard. At her entrance interview, however, she's told that she needs to have more fun, make some friends, get some hobbies, in short -- get a life.

Megan McCafferty's books are about Jessica Darling, a high school student who gets great grades and, while she does have a life (sort of), spends a lot of time stressing out about what college to apply to and whether or not she'll get in.

While the plots of the books share some similarities, it's the language that is really the shocker. Read some of the articles (or better yet, read the books) to see the disputed passages.

I don't know whether this was an honest mistake or if Viswanathan plagiarized McCafferty on purpose. Either way, if you ever have a novel published, make good and certain that all the language is your own!

My thanks, as is often the case, to the clever folks on the YALSA-BK listserv for making me aware of this controversy!


Say "hi!" to Connie!

The next time you're at the Carnegie Library - Main, you might see an unfamiliar face sitting at the teen desk. If you do, it's probably our new Library Assistant, Connie! Connie started last week, and will be working sometimes in Teen, sometimes on the First be nice to her, and be sure to introduce yourself if you see her.


Thursday, April 20, 2006

Comment Comment Comment!!

Robyn and I discovered yesterday that a possible reason so few people comment to this blog is that it's not the easiest thing to figure out how to do, if you don't have a blogger account. However, it IS possible! Here's how:

At the bottom of each post is a link that says "0 comments" (or "1 comment," or "2 comments," as the case may be). If you click on this link, it will take you to the comment window.

If you have a blogger ID, you can just write your comment, put in your username and password, and click "log-in and publish." If you do not have a blogger ID, do not fret! Simply change the "identity" from "Blogger" to "Anonymous." This will make the username and password fields disappear...then you just write your comment and click "log-in and publish."

Don't worry if your comment doesn't appear right away. We've set up this blog to require comment moderation, so we don't get all sorts of stinky spam comments like "Your blog is great! Now check out my blog on the joys of knot-tying." (Not that there's anything wrong with knot-tying. It is an important if undervalued skill.) Your comment will be emailed to me and if it's not spam or horribly inappropriate, I'll approve it. Even if it's silly.

So start commenting, people! Our sitemeter tells us you're reading this thing...but we want feedback! Come on! Make us happy!

You want your librarians to be happy, don't you?


Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Prom Time

Spring brings blooms in flowering plants and trees which are a delight to the eye. It also is the time for many girls to purchase a dress for the prom. Maybe you don't have the cash for a dress or maybe you are into recycling. Either way there is place for you to check out this Saturday, April 22nd from 10 am to 2 pm. The gym at Winchester Thurston School at 555 Morewood Avenue, Shadyside will have gently used prom gowns, and also some brand new ones available at that time.

Monday, April 17, 2006

CLP - Teen: New Books

I've updated the new book blog with new fiction AND non-fiction! Check it out here.


It's so quiet here!

There's a strange noise in Teen at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh...or perhaps I should say, a strange lack of noise. For many of you, today is your last day of Spring Break before you have to go back to school. Is that why it's so quiet in here? Are you all at home playing video games, or working dilligently on a paper that's due tomorrow, or (I hope) at the park or in your yard enjoying the beautiful weather?

The city is gearing up to open Schenley Plaza, between the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - Main and University of Pittsburgh's Hillman Library. I walked through it today on my lunch break, and saw so many people sitting on benches, surrounded by flowers, reading their books! It made me smile.

So, enjoy the beautiful weather. I won't be too sad that you're not here, because I wish I was outside too! But don't forget about us, and if you need to do more research on that paper, if it starts to rain, or if that darn pollen starts to tickle your nose, come on back to the library. Don't forget about us!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Check it out:

I just posted a bunch of new non-fiction and fiction on the New Books Blog.


Friday, April 07, 2006

Every little (or big) bit helps.

I just read a news story that literally brought tears to my eyes. An eleven-year-old girl in Mississippi raised $9,000 to help rebuild the Gulfport, Miss. library, which was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina -- and she did it by riding her horse across the state. And she's not stopping there; her goal is to raise at least $10,000 for all seven libraries damaged by the hurricane. Read the whole story here.


Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Don't forget! SureTalk

Conquer your fear of public speaking with SureTalk, starting this week at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh - Main. Come on Thursday, April 6th for a registration and information session...and then keep coming, until your confidence has grown. Starts at 7pm, in the Teen Meeting Room.

More new books!

Check them out here.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

New Fiction on the new book blog!

Check it out:

Trying something new...

Since our lists of new books are SO long that they kind of take over the whole blog, we're going to try something new. All new books (and, hopefully, other materials) will be posted to our new blog, Any time we update the new blog, we'll post here telling you we have...check back often for updates!