I finally got my 90! (and a discussion of The Dentinator!)

So after my last
entry explaining why I'm not getting the marks that my overachieving
classmates are, I come in to find I (finally!) got a 90% on one of my
assignments.  I've gotta admit, it feels good.  The irony is
that I didn't think I did as well as on the one I wrote about a week
ago where I got an 85%.  (We have to do a hypothetical reference
question every week for four weeks in a row in our 503 – Reference
class.)   So I'm not going to change my theory on how
subjective marking can be quite yet. 

Part of the reason I'm so good at reference (he says modestly) is that,
without realising it, that's been a big part of my jobs for the past 10
years.  Literary non-profits would get a lot of calls that would
be considered reference questions in a public library setting – “how do
I get published?”, “how much do authors get paid?”, “can you help me
find Author X” (which ironically is the question this week believe it
or not – maybe I'll get 100%???
They weren't always directly related to books/writing/authors
either.  I spent a lot of time helping one old guy find an outlet
for his story after he got ripped off by a business partner.  He
had come to us initially looking for a writer but we ended up trying to
find either a lawyer or a media outlet. 

So yeah, the Dentinator.  This is one of the best reference calls I ever got at the WGA. 
Me: (picks up phone)
Him: Hi.  I've written a book I'm trying to get published.
Me: (launches into my usual spiel – what kind of book is it and then what he should do next)
Him: Well, it's about a dentist.  And he's sort of like the
Terminator.  Except he's the Dentinator.  It's sort of a
science fiction thing.  Maybe half-way between Stephen King and
John Grisham.  Yeah, definitely.  That's who I'd be on the
shelf by…
Me: (thinking to myself: why do the crazy ones never let you get a word in?)
Him: …except I think that Grisham is a bit overrated.  I like
King well enough but mostly his early stuff.  I think my book
could be a series.  Publishers like that.  I've shown it to
my receptionist and she liked it.  She likes to read stuff like
that but she said my book was the best she'd ever read…
Me: (thinking again – sure, she did.  Of course your employee
thinks you're the best writer this side of Shakespeare.  My mom
thought I was the best finger painter in the first grade too once upon
a time.)
Him: …so I'd really like to come in and talk to you sometime about my book. 
Me: Uhm, we don't actually have an office.  We're only allowed to give answers to people over the phone.  Bye!

Link of the Day: RefGrunt
is a web site where a working reference librarian blogs their daily
questions.  Funny stuff.  My favourite?  “Saw kids
throwing snowballs outside.  Called the police.” 

PS – I'm typing this from the computer lab at school – another first.  Technology rocks. 

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