h1

Book Review: Good Prose

April 16, 2014

Good Prose: The Art of Nonfiction by Tracy Kidder & Richard Todd. Reviewed by Louise Hilton. 

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Tracy Kidder and his longtime editor and friend Richard Todd offer advice on writing nonfiction in this elegant little book. Letting us know right from the start how fervently they believe in the “power of story and character,” the authors affirm that “the techniques of fiction never belonged exclusively to fiction,” indeed, “no techniques of storytelling are prohibited to the nonfiction writer, only the attempt to pass off inventions as facts.”

Kidder and Todd are formidable talents but present their advice in an accessible and encouraging way. Drawing on their long careers in the field, they urge aspiring writers to believe in the intelligence of the reader and to focus, above all, on the human side of the story: “We think that every piece of writing – whether story or argument or rumination, book or essay or letter home – requires the freshness and precision that convey a distinct human presence.”

Good Prose is the culmination of Kidder and Todd’s decades-long friendship and experience in publishing. The result? Excellent prose. It belongs on every writer’s shelf alongside Strunk & White’s Elements of Style and Stephen King’s On Writing.

*An edited version of this review appeared in The Advocate (Baton Rouge, La.).

h1

Reference Outreach

April 14, 2014

Let’s visit! The Reference team at the East Baton Rouge Parish Library would love to come visit your local business or civic group to give a presentation on the Library’s wealth of resources available to best suit your organization’s information needs. Whether your group focuses on health, technology, culture, literacy, art – you name it – the Library has something for you. Give us a call at 231-3750, send a message to eref@ebrpl.com, and check out our Community Librarians InfoGuide for more information.

outreach-pic-2

h1

Main Library Dedication

April 11, 2014

Join us tomorrow (Saturday, April 12) for the dedication of the new Main Library at Goodwood. Here is the schedule of events:

10:30 a.m.
Mary Jo Kelly the Book Doctor
Storyteller

12:00 p.m.
Silly Nilly the Clown
Fun with Twisted Balloons

1:00 p.m.
Mayor-President Melvin “Kip” Holden & public officials
EBRP Library Board of Control Members
State Librarian, Rebecca Hamilton

1:30 p.m.
Reception
Tours
Ton Music
3D Printer Demonstrations

2:30 p.m.
Harvey Rabbit & Friends

final_rendering_main_library

h1

Comics Review: East of West The Promise

April 9, 2014

East of West Volume 1  by Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta. Reviewed by Adam St.Pierre.East_Of_West_Vol1

So after two consecutive reads, I think I’m ready to give reviewing this thing a shot. Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta have done something wonderful here mixing serious science fiction, alternate history, and western elements to build a story that could easily garner as much attention as Saga has over the past year or so. The story begins by showing three of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, being reborn/reincarnated as children without Death. Once War, Famine, and Conquest realize that Death is not with them they decide they must find and kill him, immediately setting up the conflict that carries throughout the rest of the story arc.

After the reincarnation scene, Hickman and Dragotta piece together what happened from the Civil War to 2066, and how we form the Seven Nations of America. Our protagonist, a Clint Eastwood-like Death dressed entirely in white, is finally shown exacting his brand of bloody vengeance upon all who have wronged him.

What exactly occurred between the Horsemen and a myriad of other questions are introduced very quickly to the reader which can make the story a bit difficult to keep up with at first. The payoff is definitely worth it and the end of the trade seriously leaves you wanting for more. Check out Volume 2 soon!

h1

ReferenceUSA: Historical Business Data Reports

April 7, 2014

ReferenceUSA now offers Historical Data Reports for U. S. businesses! This new module delivers incomparable access to anyone wanting to have a historical reference for their city, an industry, or even an individual business.  This powerful insight will be beneficial in recognizing trends and opportunities for businesses, entrepreneurs, and community planners.

ReferenceUSA is offering a series of free webinars that will teach you how to get the most out of this great database, including a new webinar that covers the Historical Business Data module. Attendees will need an internet connection and a phone line to participate.

ReferenceUSA

ReferenceUSA Search Essentials

Most Fridays (April, May, June)
April 4, April 11, May 2, May 9, May 16, June 13, June 20, June 27
Time: 11:00 AM Central (1 hour)

This session is designed for anyone new to ReferenceUSA. We will cover the Four Essentials anyone will want to know in order to be successful using the resource. This is also a great opportunity for current users to learn some new tips, tricks and techniques. Click here to register.

ReferenceUSA Historical Business Data

Day/Date: select Tuesdays (April, May, June)
April 1, April 29, May 20, June 10
Time: 2:00 PM Central (1 hour)

One of the essential requirements for planning for the future is to understand the past. ReferenceUSA has been compiling Business and Consumer data for many years and this data has been available in file format for advanced research projects.

In response to the increased interest in accessing historical business information, ReferenceUSA has developed an innovative online tool for librarians, research professionals, and library patrons to connect to powerful information that presents a vivid picture of what the business landscape looked like in a given area at a given point in time.

As with all of the ReferenceUSA products, the Historical Data module has simple to navigate interface
that is your entrée to an immense universe of interesting business information. Click here to register.

Start, Manage, & Grow Your Business Using ReferenceUSA 

Day/Date: Most Mondays (April, May, June)
April 7, April 14, May 5, May 12, May 19, June 9, June 16, June 23, June 30
Time: 2:00 PM Central (1 hour)

Entrepreneurs and business owners will learn how to use ReferenceUSA to find the mission critical
information necessary to start, manage and grow a business. Topics include:

• name Search for Business
• locate hard to find vendors, both locally and nationally
• locate subject manager experts and professional services
• find investors, venture capitalists and angels
• network with other businesses in your area or in your industry
• develop relationships with related business for co-branding opportunities
• understand community demographics
• survey locations for expansion
• conduct competitive analysis
• plan delivery routes and service areas
• source new employees

Click here to register.

Uncovering the Hidden Job Market: Career Search Strategies using ReferenceUSA

Day/Date: Most Wednesdays (April, May, June)
April 2, April 9, April 16, April 30, May 7, May 14, June 11, June 18, June 25
Time: 2:00 PM Central (1 hour)

Attendees will learn how to use ReferenceUSA as part of their Career Searching Strategy. This webinar will cover the importance of having accurate information for applications and résumés, creating engaging cover letters, assembling a network of references and referrers, finding key persons at a business to act as mentors, building datasets of potential employers based on skill set, work history, and preferences as well as how to prepare for interviews and interactions through thorough research. We will also explore the new Jobs & Internship module which adds a new dimension to job searching. Click here to register.

ReferenceUSA Consumer & Lifestyle Data

Day/Date: select Tuesdays (April, May, June)
April 8, May 6, June 17
Time: 2:00 PM Central (1 hour)

Ever wonder how marketers and advertisers ‘target’ specific messages to you? Find out how you access
the same type of data for your neighborhood or city. Anyone who is interested in understanding the purchase preferences of a community will find this data both interesting and informative. Learn how to navigate this section of ReferenceUSA and then apply the data to your needs. Click here to register.

ReferenceUSA Big Data & Mapping

Day/Date: select Tuesdays (April, May, June)
April 15, May 13, June 24
Time: 2:00 PM Central (1 hour)

Data Visualization is the next BIG thing in data. Going beyond static lists of information, ReferenceUSA can help you ‘visualize’ data elements on a map. Great for understanding how locations relate to each other or seeing densities within a specific area, the ReferenceUSA mapping tools give you a new and powerful way to better understand the landscape. Learn how to build a map to display results and how to manipulate the mapping tools to your advantage. Click here to register.

h1

Jones Creek Pacers Walking Club

April 4, 2014

Join us at the Jones Creek Regional Branch Library this Monday, April 7, for the first meeting of our new walking club called the Jones Creek Pacers. Come at 6 p.m. for an informational meeting and then it’s Ready, Set, Walk time at 6:30. Wear casual clothes and comfortable walking shoes. We’ll discuss appropriate goals, tracking, warming up, etc., and we’d like your input on walking times, distances, and frequency.

For more information or to register, visit the Jones Creek Reference desk or call (225) 756-1150. Your Pace or Mine?

jcr-walking-club

h1

Business Person of the Month: Anne Milneck

April 2, 2014

­Red Stick Spice Co.
Anne Milneck, Owner
7970 Jefferson Hwy.
Baton Rouge, LA

(225)930-9967

Monday through Friday, 10:30 am – 5:30 pm

Saturday, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm

www.redstickspice.com

“People who love to eat are always the best people.”

 – Julia Child

Red Stick Spice Company gives its customers the personal attention they expect and deserve and offers products ranging from spices to blends and rubs, from olive oils and vinegars to high-quality loose tea.  They sell the best spice blends from local chefs, award-winning grill masters, regional farmers, and they even blend some of their own. Red Stick Spice Company captures the delicious, unique flavors of our region. “Food is our passion,” says owner Anne Milneck. “In South Louisiana, we’re lucky enough to enjoy the benefits of bountiful produce and fresh seafood, and it’s important that it’s seasoned to perfection.”

Milneck is originally from LaPlace, Louisiana, and has made Baton Rouge her home for more than 20 years. She studied journalism at LSU and earned a culinary degree from the John Folse Culinary Institute at Nicholls State University in 2010. While her children were still at home, Anne launched a small catering business called “Lunch Lady” that specialized in gourmet boxed lunches. When the opportunity arose to purchase the Red Stick Spice Co., it was a no-brainer. “I’m a trained chef, but working in a restaurant wasn’t a good fit for my family. I work around the things I love (food) but in a less stressful environment.”

Red Stick Spice Company already had a reputation for offering a variety of high-quality spices, teas, oils, and vinegars. Anne says one of the most appealing features of the store is its ability to provide the exact amount of spice that a customer wants. And she’ll let you taste it, too. To ensure the freshness and quality of the products she sells, she doesn’t keep large amounts in stock. For the most part, what you see on the shelf is what is available.

Since buying the store, Milneck has added more spice mixes, including a few she combines on-site. Her Bayou Lafourche blend combines bay leaf and filé along with salt, garlic, granulated onion, and other dry spices. She also prepares classic French herb blends, herbes de Provence, bouquets garnis and fines herbes. She has increased the number of chili offerings for fans of spicy food, and she has a revolving list of barbecue rubs that complement seasonal foods.  Anne is also looking to add more organic spice offerings as they come available. The store also stocks award-winning loose teas along with 15 new varieties.

Red Stick Spice Company sells infused olive oils from small family farms in California, including garlic and jalapeno. The herb or vegetable is pressed in the same press as the olives, resulting in a deeper and richer flavor than simply letting a garlic clove float around in a bottle. “The difference between olive oil here and olive oil from a grocery store is huge.  A lot of olive oils are actually oil blends, not 100 percent olive.” The store also carries extra virgin olive oils, flavored oils, and avocado oil.

Anne sees small business as the key to securing the lost art of close, personal attention while shopping. “My business doesn’t move at warp speed nor is high volume a priority. For every customer to receive the attention they need, it takes time.  We spend that time with each customer.  Small businesses also play a role in helping each other. We recommend other small business to our customers – and other small businesses do the same. In this way, we create a supportive web encouraging customers to shop local.” Milneck would love to see more movement of small business into Mid-City and Downtown. “Those are areas that I’d love to see grow into communities where residents can shop, eat, and play without leaving their neighborhood and I would love to be a part of that.”

For Anne, it’s important that owners participate in every aspect of the business – sales, purchasing, stocking, and even janitorial work. “When you’re willing to do any task, you learn more about your business – and it shows.  Customers can tell if you’re fully committed. One challenge Milneck encountered was finding the right people to work in the store. However, she now has a great group of people who love working with customers. Helping customers make the most of their purchases and their time in the kitchen is Anne’s main goal. For Anne, cooking represents happiness and family and comfort and joy. She wants everyone to feel the same way when they step up to the stove.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,042 other followers