Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Meet the Board: Susie Menk, Director at Large

Tell us a little bit about who you are and your connection to libraries and the YSS Board.
My name is Susie Menk and I am the Children’s Librarian at the Manitowoc Public Library. 
Susie is in the upper right in the blue shirt.

If you could be any book character for a day or a week, who would you be?
I would be Anne of Green Gables.  I have always loved girl characters like Anne Shirley, Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm , Meg Murray and Laura Ingalls Wilder. Growing up near Lake Michigan I have loved being near the water too.  Living on Prince Edward Island sounds like it would be beautiful.  I hope to get the chance to visit there someday.

What was your favorite childhood book?
I had so many it’s hard to pick one—Anne of Green Gables, Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, Daddy-Long-Legs, A Wrinkle in Time and many others.

What are you reading right now?
Right now I am reading “Mr. Lemoncello’s Library Olympics.”  I read the first book and really liked it so I was excited to see another book about Mr. Lemoncello’s library.

Where do you get inspiration for your work?
I love to watch the children and talk to parents.  I have worked with children most of my life and their love for reading and books and willingness to share their joy is what keeps me going.  Our Toddler Time parents and children have become almost like family.  I love when the kids run into the storytime room shouting “It’s storytime! It’s storytime!”

In what format do you like to read? EBooks? Print? Graphic Novel? Audiobook?
I try to read in a variety of formats.  I usually have print books, an ebook and an audiobook going pretty much all at the same time.  Not a huge fan of graphic novels, but I did like Dogs of War by Sheila Keenan.  We used that one in our Battle of the Books a few years back.

What’s your method for getting distracted kids (of any age) back on track during a program?
I love to use fingerplays or action rhymes from the wonderful duo at Jbrary.  I think I would be lost without their wonderful videos!

Tell us about a memorable experience at WLA.
I was at WLA a few years back and attended several workshops by librarians from the LaCrosse library.  They really were excited about their outreach and field trip adventure programs.  I have since been able to start the same kind of program at my library.  It has been a blast to see all the second graders come in and show us their Star Reader bookmarks and get their prizes.  There was even a family who came in and got library cards for the rest of the children since the 2nd grader now had his!  It was awesome!

What do you like to do in your free time to recharge?
I read, of course! I also love to spend time with my three sons and I stamp cards.  Right now I am trying to get outside to walk and work in my yard as often as I can.  Spending time with my siblings and mother is another part of my “recharge” time.

Share an awesome library moment with us.
My most awesome library moment came when a parent sought me out to tell me that a book I had recommended for her son had been a big hit.  She was telling me about his reluctance to pick up books and when they finished reading “Adam & Thomas” by Aharon Apelfeld, her son looked at her and said, “I’m never going to judge a book by its cover again!”  LOVE IT!

Anything else you’d like to share?

I am excited about being a part of the YSS board.  I love what I do and want to share my love of reading, libraries and children with others!

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