Tuesday, June 30, 2015

That's A Mouthful: Camp NaNoWriMo

Everyone has stories to tell.  Narratives locked inside minds.  Words itching to escape through fingertips.  The prospect of writing it all down, though, can be daunting.  Some people never get around to telling their stories, because the time and energy required to craft a novel seem like insurmountable obstacles.  Clearly, these people have never heard of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).

NaNoWriMo is "a fun seat-of-your-pants approach to creative writing” that takes place every November.  Between 12:01 a.m. November 1st and 11:59 p.m. November 30th, the goal is to finish a 50,000-word draft of a novel.  Impossible, right?  Actually, with the organization’s network of online support and helpful tools, it is a goal within reach of most people (provided they work well under pressure).  Take a look at this helpful step-by-step guide to see how the process works.

National Novel Writing Month is in November, though.  Why are we talking about it at the end of June?  Because Camp NaNoWriMo, NaNoWriMo's laid-back cousin, starts July 1st and runs until the end of the month.  Promoted as “an idyllic writers retreat, smack-dab in the middle of your crazy life," CampNaNoWriMo is focused on more than just novels, welcoming projects that range from one thousand to one million words long.

While not an official sponsor of Camp NaNoWriMo or NaNoWriMo’s Come Write In project, the TWU Libraries do have plenty of space available, on all three campuses, for writers who need a quiet place to hammer out that masterpiece.  The Denton and Dallas libraries have study rooms you can reserve online (make sure to create an account first), and the Houston ARC has study rooms available on a first come, first served basis.

Sometimes a deadline is all you need to get that story in your head onto paper.  If this appeals to you, why not sign up?

Who knows?  One day your novel could make it into the TWU Libraries’ collections!

~Jason Mims

Monday, June 29, 2015

From Beyond Library Walls: An Intro to Embase

Image courtesy of Elsevier.com.
Editor's Note:  In addition to their myriad responsibilities at the libraries in Denton and Dallas, and at the Houston ARC, staff members of the TWU Libraries place a high priority on professional development--including training, conference attendance, and self-directed skills advancement.

Library Assistant Yandee Vazquez of the Houston ARC shares her takeaways from a recent class on Embase, a comprehensive biomedical literature database accessible to TWU Houston Center students and faculty and staff members through the Texas Medical Center Library.

The Texas Medical Center (TMC) Library conducts a number of classes throughout the academic year which are open to faculty, staff and students of the TMC. In Spring 2015 the library offered an hour-long class entitled Introduction to Embase, hosted by TMC Librarian Emily Couvillon.

Embase, like Scopus, is an Elsevier product. Where Scopus provides greater searching depth regarding author metrics, however, Embase focuses on indexing depth through the medical thesaurus Emtree. Principally for pharmaceutical and disease-specific searches, Emtree allows for greater precision and accuracy in searches which some of our students, particularly in nursing and physical therapy, may prefer. Embase also includes indexed conference proceedings, easily filtered out, which are often difficult to locate.

While there is a small learning curve regarding the use of Embase terminology and conducting Embase searches, it is comparable to learning PubMed. In addition, Embase is simpler to navigate than CINAHL, in my opinion. The clean design of the Embase home page makes the use of filters simple; it is obvious to see what is added or removed.

Embase provides a viable search alternative to PubMed, CINAHL and Scopus, while remaining connected to these databases and the information they contain. Embase will be one of the resources from the Texas Medical Center Library that I highly recommend to students, and one which I will begin using for my own searches.

~Yandee Vazquez

Friday, June 26, 2015

Art Works In Red, White & Blue

This untitled painting by Gail Williamson Cope is just one of many 
pieces in various mediums on display in the Blagg-Huey Library 
on the Denton campus of TWU.  Photograph by Chance Maggard.  
June 25, 2015.  
Editor's Note:  Art works to awaken the senses.  It fuels the imagination, encourages creativity, and clears the mind.  It relaxes us.  It can make us laugh; it can bring tears.  It provides a respite, however brief, from the task at hand.  Art works to inspire our inner artists, encouraging the advancement of our own works of art--whatever forms those may take.  It raises our quality of life.  Art makes us feel good.

Between classes, between projects, between chapters--whenever the impulse strikes--look up and really see some of the creative works around you, including those at the Blagg-Huey Library on the Denton campus of TWU.  

Because art works.

In all-American colors, this untitled painting  by Gail Williamson Cope, Texas Woman's University Class of 2013, is just one of many pieces on display in the Blagg-Huey Library on the Denton campus of TWU.

See this painting in mixed media, oils and acrylics just outside the Woman's Collection offices on the library's second floor, and enjoy works in a variety of mediums displayed on the library's four levels whenever the building is open (a friendly reminder--a current TWU ID card is required for entrance after 9 p.m.)  
For assistance, please visit the Information Desk (on the right as you enter the building.)

~Sandy Cochran 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Susan Whitmer On a Library Career

Susan Whitmer (R), Humanities Librarian at the Blagg-Huey
Library on the Denton campus, answers a question from an
audience member during a panel discussion on careers in
the field of library and information sciences presented by
the University of North Texas Department of Library & In-
formation Sciences Web Institute.  Pictured with Whitmer is
Donna Arnold, Music Librarian at the University of North
Texas.  Photograph by Dr. Xin Wang.  June 11, 2015. 
Susan Whitmer, Humanities Librarian at the Blagg-Huey Library on the Denton campus of TWU, was among a panel of North Texas-area library professionals who gathered recently to discuss careers in the library and information sciences (LIS).

The Library Careers panel discussion, presented on June 11, 2015 by the University of North Texas Department of Library & Information Sciences Web Institute, was organized by the department's Dr. Xin Wang to inform the career planning of graduate students new to the field by educating them about aspects of a career in LIS.

The panel, consisting of librarians in various phases of their professional careers, included Donna Arnold, Music Librarian at the University of North TexasThomas Finley, Adult Services Librarian at the Frisco Public LibraryMyriam Martinez-Banuelos, Outreach Librarian at the University of North Texas Health Science CenterDerek Reece, Digital Project Librarian at the University of Texas at ArlingtonMitch Stepanovich, Architecture Librarian at the University of Texas at ArlingtonBarbara Thompson, Director of the Haslet Public Library; and Susan Whitmer, Humanities Librarian at Texas Woman’s University.

The panelists discussed their educational and professional backgrounds, how and why they became librarians, the responsibilities of their positions, the future of libraries, overcoming obstacles, and the benefits of librarianship.

North Texas-area library professionals take part in a panel discussion of careers in library and information sciences presented by the University of North Texas Department of Library & Information Sciences Web Institute.  Panelists included (L-R) Thomas Finley, Adult Services Librarian at the Frisco Public Library; Barbara Thompson, Director of the Haslet Public Library; Donna Arnold, Music Librarian at the University of North Texas; Susan Whitmer, Humanities Librarian at Texas Woman’s University; Myriam Martinez-Banuelos, Outreach Librarian at the University of North Texas Health Science Center; Mitch Stepanovich, Architecture Librarian at the University of Texas at Arlington; and Derek Reece, Digital Project Librarian at the University of Texas at Arlington.  Photograph by Dr. Xin Wang.  June 11, 2015.

As the Humanities Librarian in 
the TWU Libraries' Reference Department, Whitmer's research specialties are in the fields of Criminal Justice, Government & Political Science, History, Law, and Literature & Language.  She is available for individual and group research consultations, as well as library instruction sessions within courses, and can be reached at swhitmer@twu.edu or 940-898-3739. 
~Susan Whitmer

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Severe Weather Threatens. Now What?

When severe weather threatens, being prepared is the best defense.  Image courtesy of the Dallas-Hiram Patch.
If the weather of the past few weeks in Denton, Dallas and Houston has taught us anything, it's that serious weather conditions can develop at any time--and when they do, being prepared is the best defense. 

According to TWU's Department of Public Safety (DPS), as soon as you are notified of approaching severe weather you should seek shelter (using an interior room away from doors and windows if possible) and wait for an all clear message (either directly from DPS via Pioneer Alert text, email or phone call; or verbally from a university employee.)

See below for specific advice should you be in the (Denton) Blagg-Huey Library, the Dallas Center Library, or the Houston ARC when severe weather threatens.  Taking a few seconds now to familiarize yourself with these instructions is your best defense against severe weather while you are in one of the TWU Libraries.  Sidenote:  If nothing else, please read Your TWU Safety Toolbox below. 

DENTON CAMPUS' Blagg-Huey Library
•  Listen for instructions from DPS/library employees
•  Seek shelter, using interior rooms away from doors and windows (the Garden Level hallways, restrooms and Remote Storage area are good places to go)
•  Wait for an all clear message from DPS/library employees 

DALLAS CAMPUS' Dallas Center Library
•  Listen for instructions from DPS/library employees
•  Seek shelter, using interior rooms away from doors and windows (the first-floor auditorium is a good place to go)
•  Wait for an all clear message from DPS/library employees


•  Listen for instructions from DPS/library employees
  Seek shelter, using interior rooms away from doors and windows (stairwell B--with its fire doors and windowless, reinforced walls--is a good place to go)
•  Wait for an all clear message from DPS/library employees
  After a weather emergency, those off campus are encouraged to call the TWU Houston Severe Weather Closure Hotline (713-794-2310) to see if the campus is open


  The TWU Department of Public Safety uses the Pioneer Alert system to alert students and faculty and staff members in the case of a significant on-campus emergency, or a campus closing.  Sign up to receive alerts on this page.
  It's a good idea to keep the DPS emergency number for your campus in your phone (Denton: 940-898-2911; Dallas: 214-689-6666; Houston: 713-794-2222).
  A printable copy of the DPS flyer Know What To Do--with instructions on what to do in various types of emergency situations--is available here.
  Phone numbers and other information related to bad weather closings at TWU can be found on the TWU Bad Weather Info page.

~Sandy Cochran

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Tech Tuesday: Graphing Calculators Now Available

TI 84 Plus graphing calculators are now available at the Blagg-
Huey Library in Denton and the TWU T. Boone Pickens Institute of
Health Sciences-Dallas Center Library.  Photograph by Sandy
Cochran.  June 22, 2015.
The TWU Libraries in Denton and Dallas now carry graphing calculators.

For exams and other times when a calculator is needed--but smartphones are prohibited or unavailable--a student with a valid TWU ID can check out one of the TI 84 Plus graphing calculators now available at the circulation desks of the Blagg-Huey Library in Denton and the TWU T. Boone Pickens Institute of Health Sciences-Dallas Center Library.  Calculators have 4-hour checkout periods and may be removed from library premises.

Questions?  Call our Circulation Department at 940-898-3719.

~Sandy Cochran

Monday, June 22, 2015

Smokin': BBQ & Grilling Cookbooks

Legends of Texas Barbecue Cookbook: Recipes and Recollections from the Pit
 by Robb Walsh is one of many titles on barbecue and grilling contained 

in the Cookbook Collection of the TWU Libraries. 
Now that the summer solstice has passed, can your next barbecue be far behind?   

The Cookbook Collection of the TWU Libraries--part of the Woman's Collection housed on the second floor of the Denton campus' Blagg Huey Library--contains a selection of cookbooks (including the following) to fill your every barbecue and grilling need.

Cookbooks are not available for checkout, but free scanning is available at several locations throughout the building.  For assistance please visit the Information Desk on the first floor.

From abundance to diets, and prohibition to war, the TWU Libraries' collection of cookbooks richly illustrates decades of America's changing relationship with food.  Visit the Gateway to Women's History to view Cookbook Collection materials online.

~Sandy Cochran with Michele Miller

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Throwback Thursday: The Daily Lass-O, 1953

Not A Computer in Sight  Journalism students working on the Daily Lass-O, Texas
State College for Women, 
Denton, 1953.  The Woman's Collection, Texas Woman's
A lot has changed since 1953.

The Texas Woman's University (formerly Texas State College for Women) student newspaper, called the Daily Lass-O until 1986, is now The Lasso.  Today, the paper's offices house Macs instead of manual typesetting.  Over the years, the Woman's Collection (home of the University Archives) has grown to become the largest depository in the Southern United States of research material about women.

One thing that hasn't changed?  The TWU Libraries' dedication to serving your information needs.  At the Blagg-Huey Library in Denton, the Dallas Center Library, and the Academic Resource Center in Houston, we provide access to a rich, evolving array of services and resources to support your academic life--and also spaces, technology and professional support with your success in mind.

Questions?  Please contact us.  We're here to help--and that will never change.

~Sandy Cochran

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Duh Nuh: Jaws' 40th Anniversary

Duh nuh.  

Two notes.  If you are one of the millions who has seen Jaws since its release in 1975, the hairs on the back of your neck are already standing up.

Celebrate this month's 40th anniversary of Jaws, the Steven Spielberg summer classic based on the bestselling novel by Peter Benchley, with a splash . . . and a scream.

Just in time to make his Father's Day, Jaws is returning to select theaters nationwide (including cinemas in Denton, Dallas and Houston).  Featuring a special introduction by Turner Classic Movie host Ben Mankiewicz, the film that made "You're gonna need a bigger boat" (improvised by the film's star Roy Scheider) one of the best-known lines in movie history can be seen on the big screen June 21 and 24, 2015.  Check Fandango for showtimes in your area.

Can't make the film?  Two copies of Jaws are available for checkout, as of press time, from the TWU Libraries.  You could take the book, with its slightly different ending (I'm not telling), to the beach . . . just don't go in the water.  

Duh nuh.

~Sandy Cochran

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Your Next Good Read Is Waiting

The vast collections of the TWU Libraries are nothing new--but many of our titles are.

Our catalog now contains a large group of new (as of April and May, 2015) titles in a broad range of subject areas.  See here for a list of our newest books in print, and here for our newest ebooks.

When you find a title that interests you, copy and paste it into the Catalog Search box on the TWU Libraries homepage.  For a print book, the availability and call number will appear below the author's name; for an ebook, click View It and follow the links to reach the full-text version of the title.  For either books or ebooks, click Details to learn more.

Questions?  Please feel free to contact us.     

Whether you prefer the convenience of ebooks or the smell and feel of crisp new pages, your next good read may be waiting.


~Sandy Cochran with Vickie Silva

Monday, June 15, 2015

Two Database Changes To Know

The database Mergent Archives is now available through the TWU
.  A vast, indexed collection of corporate and industry-related
Mergent Archives is accessible by an unlimited number of
concurrent users.  Image courtesy of mergent.com.
Two changes to the TWU Libraries' extensive collection of databases are now in effect.

 Mergent Archives--a vast, indexed collection of corporate and industry-related documents--is now available through the TWU Libraries. 

Through Mergent Archives an unlimited number of concurrent users can access manuals, including Moody's Manuals dating back to 1909 and more, for a comprehensive and in-depth look into the history of corporate America; equity research reports; annual reports dating back to as early as 1925; and a collection of industry reports describing key factors of a broad selection of industry sectors.

Access Mergent Archives via the TWU Libraries homepage/Databases A-Z List/M/Mergent Archives.

  The database Natural Standard has a new name--Natural Medicines--but the same valuable content.  Natural Medicines is the most authoritative resource available on dietary supplements, natural medicines, and complementary alternative and integrative therapies.

Access Natural Medicines via the TWU Libraries homepage/Databases A-Z List/N/Natural Medicines.

For questions regarding these or other databases, please contact us.  We are, as always, happy to assist you. 

~Sandy Cochran with Christina Cool

Friday, June 12, 2015

National Caribbean-American Heritage Month

Ten years ago this month, in June 2005, 
the House of Representatives unanimously adopted H. Con. Res. 71, sponsored by Congresswoman Barbara Lee, recognizing the significance of Caribbean people and their descendants in the history and culture of the United States.  On February 14, 2006, the resolution passed in the U.S. Senate. Since that declaration, the White House has issued an annual proclamation recognizing June as National Caribbean-American Heritage Month.

TWU Libraries Reference Librarian Jimmie Lyn Harris has compiled a selection of library and other resources--including print and electronic books, videos and websites--on a dedicated Subject Guide for you to enjoy this month as we honor the lives and legacies of all Caribbean-Americans.  

~Sandy Cochran with Jimmie Lyn Harris

Thursday, June 11, 2015

#ENDALZ: Raising Awareness of Alzheimer's Disease

Awareness is Key  Books on Alzheimer's Disease and related conditions are on display in the first-floor
lobby of the Blagg-Huey Library on the Denton campus through Sunday, June 14, 2015 in conjunction with
Alzheimer's Disease programming of the TWU chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.  Photograph by
Chance Maggard.  June 10, 2015.   
The Blagg-Huey Library on the Denton campus, in conjunction with the TWU chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. (AKA), is helping to raise awareness of Alzheimer's Disease.

The TWU chapter of AKA, a sorority dedicated to domestic and international servant-leadership, is including in its efforts this semester programming to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s Disease.  In conjunction with this undertaking, books on the disease and related conditions are on display in the Blagg-Huey Library's first-floor lobby (just inside the front entrance.)  The volumes, compiled by Reference Librarian Jimmie Lyn Harris from the library's General and Children's Collections, will be on display through Sunday, June 14, 2015. All titles are available for checkout.

For more information on Alzheimer's Disease--including signs and symptoms, treatment and information on support groups and services for affected people and their caregivers--consult the Alzheimer's Disease Fact Sheet from the National Institute on Aging of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research.  See their website for information on the disease; programs and services available in your area; research updates; joining the fight against Alzheimer's; and more.  #ENDALZ 

Information on the TWU chapter of AKA is available on the group's website.

~Sandy Cochran with Jimmie Lyn Harris

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Mims' The Word: The Handy Hold Request

Editor's Note: Mims' The Word is a blog series by Jason Mims, TWU Libraries Stacks Manager and Social Media Team member.  A Circulation Department veteran at the Blagg-Huey Library on the Denton campus, Jason enjoys sharing his behind-the-scenes knowledge to help the TWU community.

Have you ever needed an item at the library, only to discover that it was not on the shelf?  Or that it was checked out or on another TWU campus? A hold request can be a solution in these situations.

Q:  What are hold requests, and how can they help me?
A:  A hold request is a simple way to get TWU Libraries materials which are not, for whatever reason, currently available.  
If you need an item which the catalog indicates is checked out, for example, you can place a hold request on it.  As soon as the item is returned you will be granted access to it.  

The same is true if you need something from a library on another TWU campus.  If you are at the TWU T. Boone Pickens Institute of Health Sciences-Dallas Center, for example, but you need an item that is housed at the Blagg-Huey Library in Denton, placing a hold request on the item will ensure that it gets to your campus.

If you're unable to find an item on its proper shelf, simply fill out an Item Search Form at the Circulation Desk.  If the item is located it will be placed on hold for you.  If the item isn’t found, you can request it through the libraries' Interlibrary Loan service.

Jason Mims, Stacks Manager with the TWU Libraries and member
of the libraries' Social Media Team.  For the benefit of TWU students,
faculty and staff, Jason shares what he knows about the ins and
outs of life behind the Circulation desk.  Photograph by Kristin Wolski.

July 22, 2014.
Q:  How do I place a hold request?
A:  The best part of placing a hold request is how simple the process is.
1)  Go into the TWU Libraries online catalog and search for an item.
2)  When you find what you’re looking for, click the Get It link below the title, then the Sign in for more options link on the right side of the screen.
3)  Sign in with your Pioneer Portal credentials.
4)  Click the Request link on the left side of the screen.
5)  Fill out the required information, then click Request.

That's all it takes to place an item on hold!

Q:  What else do I need to know about hold requests?
A:  Some things cannot be placed on hold, and hold requests do expire.
1)  Two types of items cannot be placed on hold:
  • Reserve items (this will never change); and 
  • Items that are currently available on your home campus.  If you are a student on the Houston campus, for example, you cannot place a Houston item on hold unless it is currently checked out.  If it is on the shelf, the only options for pick up location on the online form will be the two TWU campuses (Denton and Dallas) which you are not on.  If you try to place the item on hold, it will be sent to the campus--Denton or Dallas--you've chosen.  Similiarly, a TWU Denton student who places a Denton item on hold (with a pick up location of Dallas) can expect that item to be sent to the Dallas campus.
2)  Items on hold will remain so for a maximum of 10 days, after which they will be reshelved.

Q:  How can I get help with a hold request question?
A:  If you have a question about hold requests, please refer to our Hold Requests page; send an email to circ@twu.edu; or visit the library Circulation Desk on your campus.

That’s it for this one, T-Dub.

~Jason Mims

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Tech Tuesday: Let's Chat

There are many ways to connect with the information professionals at the TWU Libraries--the choice is yours.  Whether you like to text, phone, chat, email, speak in person or connect via social media, we are here to help you with your research and other information needs.  Get started here.

Combining the best of technology and personal service, the libraries' chat service is available 7 days per week when the library is open.  Chat at your convenience with a helpful staff member, one-on-one, during our chat hours (above). With the press of a button get a quick response to your research and other questions.  

Starting on the libraries' homepage, click the chat button in the right hand column (look for the words LIVE CHAT!).  Answer a few simple questions and you'll be connected to someone who can help you.

Let's chat.

~Sandy Cochran

Monday, June 8, 2015

Men's Health Month

June is Men’s Health Month.  Anchored by a Congressional health education program, Men’s Health Month is celebrated across the country with screenings, health fairs, media appearances and other health education and outreach activities.  Men's Health Month

Help raise awareness of preventable health problems--and encourage early detection and treatment of disease--among men and boys.  Check out the social media of our friends and colleagues at TWU's Student Health Services (SHS) (Facebook) and SHS Health Promotion (@HealthyTWU on Twitter and Instagram) for men’s health facts and tips to share with the men in your life. 


Good health to all.

~Sandy Cochran 

Friday, June 5, 2015

Silver Wings, Flying Dreams: A WASP Documentary Takes Off

WASP (L-R) Frances Green, Margaret Kirchner, Ann Currier and Blanche Bross in their flight gear--with the 
B-17 Pistol Packin' Mama in the background--after training at Lockbourne AFB, Columbus, Ohio.  The WASP, 
volunteer civilian pilots who were the first women in history to fly for the U.S. military, are the subject of the 
new documentary Silver Wings, Flying Dreams: The Complete Story of the Women Airforce Service Pilots.  
Women Airforce Service Pilots Digital Collection.  Texas Woman's University.
A new documentary, featuring interviews and other footage filmed in the official WASP Archive housed on the Denton campus of TWUhas taken off.  

Silver Wings, Flying Dreams: The Complete Story of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (formerly titled Silver Wings, Shattered Dreams: The Long Road to Recognition) aired over the Memorial Day weekend on PBS channels throughout Florida. Written, produced and directed by Bill Suchy and edited by Gerald J. Godbout III, Silver Wings tells the story of pioneering women aviators who for a brief moment in the darkest days of WWII shattered the glass ceiling and defied the convention that a woman had no place in the cockpit of a military aircraft.

Between 1942 and 1944, more than a thousand of these women left homes and jobs for the opportunity of a lifetime--to become the first in history to fly for the U.S. military.  They volunteered as civilian pilots in an experimental Army Air Corps Program designed to determine if women could serve as pilots and relieve men for overseas duty.  These women became the Women Airforce Service Pilots, better known as the WASP.  The WASP Archive.  They went on to help win the war by ferrying aircraft, flying as test pilots, and towing targets for anti-aircraft gunnery practice.  Trailer of Silver Wings, Flying Dreams: The Complete Story of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (below).  

Silver Wings, Flying Dreams promo/demo from Bill Suchy on Vimeo.

WASP Archive at TWU provided images, documents and research support to Bill Suchy, the project's writer, producer and director. The film features surviving WASP reliving their personal wartime experiences and their battle for Veteran status--a fight that took decades to win.  WASP in the News.  Texas Woman's University Libraries.

National PBS distribution of Silver Wings is scheduled for 2015.  Screenings of the film in several Texas cities are also planned for later this year.  Watch this blog and the TWU Libraries' Facebook and Twitter for updates.  For more information, see the film's Facebook.

The official archive of the Women Service Airforce Pilots (WASP) is housed in the Woman's Collection in the Blagg-Huey Library on the Denton (Texas) campus of Texas Woman's University.  

The TWU Woman's Collection is the largest depository in the Southern United States of research material about women. 

~Sandy Cochran with Kimberly Johnson