Posted in Interesting News & Commentary

Reading Challenge Check-In and Tips

Are you participating in a reading challenge this year? McCain Library shared a post in January about different 2021 reading challenges readers could take part in. Some were fulfilling personal goals and others were checking off specific books or genres from an organization’s reading list. Whether you are surpassing your current goal, staying on track, or falling short of where you would like to be in your reading journey, check out the tips below to help you achieve your goal this year!

  • Read What You Like – Instead of forcing yourself to sit through 300 pages of a book you aren’t enjoying, DNF (do-not-finish) it and start something else. Readers often feel forced to finish a book because they are a hundred pages in or because they want to look smarter by reading a classic, but nothing makes you dislike reading as much as reading a book you are not enjoying.
  • Set Aside Time Each Day to Read – Creating a set reading time each day is beneficial for individuals who like scheduling their day into time increments. Setting aside thirty minutes or more each morning or evening for reading will help you chip away at your reading list in no time. Add it to your daily planner or calendar to feel extra productive after completing your daily read!
  • Set a Page Goal for Each Day – For some readers, setting a time limit (like read 30 minutes each day) feels restrictive or turns reading into a chore that has to be accomplished. Instead of setting aside time, they plan a to read a certain number of pages each day. Often, they become so invested in the book and surpass their goal. Reading a minimum of 30 pages a day means you could complete Marie Kondo’s life changing magic of tidying up, Aysegul Savas’s Walking on the Ceiling, or Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber in a week! (Fun Fact: All of these are available for checkout at McCain Library!)
  • Take a Book with You – Have a gap between classes? Taking the bus to get groceries? Typically spend your lunch break on Instagram? Take a book with you when you leave your home or dorm room and read it during your break, bus ride, or in the long line at the grocery store. If you are participating in the Scottie Fit Challenge this semester, you can gain points for every hour away from your screen. Read a book during lunch instead of checking in with social media and gain Scottie Fit points!
  • Audiobooks – Audiobook popularity has steadily risen over the last few years, and it’s easy to see why. You can listen to them while driving, cooking, drawing, grocery shopping, working out, or when drifting off to sleep. They are easy to access through apps like Audible, Bookmobile, and Google Play. Public libraries often have popular audiobooks freely available through programs like Overdrive/Libby and Hoopla. While audiobooks aren’t for everyone, they are a great resource for students with a reading-heavy semester who might need a break from the screen or page.
  • eBooks – EBooks are also freely available through most public library systems through apps like RB Digital, Hoopla, Libby, eBooks on EBSCOhost (available through McCain Library) and eBook Central (available through McCain Library). If your public library is currently closed to in-person service, try finding eBooks to expand your reading options.
  • Join a Reading Challenge Group – If you are participating in a group reading challenge like the ones listed in January’s blog post, share what you are reading with the group in Goodreads (or whatever platform the group uses) or look at what others are reading to see what looks good!
  • Join a Book Club – Book clubs usually meet once a month and read specific kinds of books. Find a group that interests you and check it out! Charis Books & More has several monthly virtual book clubs which you can find here. The Black Power Book Club, Agnes Scott’s student organization, also has a monthly read. Follow them on Instagram here.
  • And Finally, Reread Books You Love Reading, like most things, is often quicker the second time around, and if you love a book, why wouldn’t you reread it? Not everyone finds it easy to reread books. Some readers find it boring to explore the same characters again and again, but if you enjoy rereading, make it a habit to reread titles you love whenever you need a break from new books!

Never feel guilty about not meeting your goal or falling behind. Only you get to determine what, when, and how much you read. As Captain Barbossa puts it in Pirates of the Carribbean, “The code is more what you’d call guidelines than actual rules,” and as Coach Jimmy Dugan does NOT put it in A League of Their Own, “There’s no rules in reading!”

Posted in Interesting News & Commentary

Last Week of Virtual Escape Room!

This week is the last week to participate in the virtual Escape the Library event. Use library resources to solve puzzles and collect clues as they race against time to escape the library before sunrise or be trapped here forever!

Participants who successfully complete the challenge by March 5 will be entered into a raffle for a chance to win a gift card. The participant who completes the challenge first will automatically receive a $25 gift card. All Agnes Scott College students are eligible to play. Gift cards will be given to individual players, not teams.

Please contact with questions about the activity.

Enter the escape room if you dare…

Posted in Interesting News & Commentary, The Study Hall

The Study Hall 3/1/21

Happy Monday!

WorldCat Guide:
Schedule a Research Appointment:
Youtube Video:
McCain Music Collection Guide:

Items to Borrow:
Place a Hold:
In the Dream House:
Posted in Interesting News & Commentary

New Smith Collection Books!

Using funds from the President’s Mini-Grant for Social Justice, McCain Library has worked over the last few months to expand the Shuronda Gardner Smith Multicultural Resource Collection. This collection, commonly referred to as the Smith Collection, is comprised of a diverse selection of multicultural resources that can be used to educate and promote diversity and inclusion for all Scotties. We have molded this collection to include significant resources from history as well as more recent texts that reflect important issues of our time. If you have any suggestions for what you would like to see in the Smith Collection, suggest a purchase and note that you would like this to be added to this Collection.

Enjoy eBooks? Check out the Smith Collection eBook list here. These eBooks are all currently available to Scotties using their Agnes Scott login information. 

Posted in Interesting News & Commentary

What Book Made You First Love Reading?

We all love reading, but do you remember the first book that made you fall in love with reading? Was it a story your parents read to you before bed or maybe the first book you discovered for yourself on the shelves of your public library? Was it a book on tape during a long road trip to your aunt’s house or maybe a long series of twisted tales and grand adventures? Comment below and tell us the book that first made YOU love reading!

Posted in Interesting News & Commentary

JSTOR Companion to the Schomburg Center’s Black Liberation Reading List

Earlier this month, JSTOR announced a pleasant collaboration with the Schomburg Center for Research in Black History, a research library in Harlem and an extension of the New York Public Library system. Together they worked to compile a list of JSTOR companion readings for the Schomburg Center’s Black Liberation Reading List. This compilation pulled full-text articles and books related to racism, antiracism, and Black voices and organized the texts in a complementary open library for researchers and readers of BIPOC-Q studies.

View the full open library here. The content in this reading list will be freely available until December 31, 2021.

Read more about this compilation here.

Posted in Interesting News & Commentary

Zotero Advanced Skills and Tricks

If you have Zotero installed and have been using it for a while, attend this session to learn about advanced features such as creating public or group libraries and installing new citation styles.

For additional information email or call 404-471-6094.

Posted in Interesting News & Commentary

The Study Hall – McCain Library’s Official Newsletter

Have you read The Study Hall yet? The official McCain Library newsletter is a monthly publication that shares all of the updated news and happenings from McCain Library. The Study Hall comes out on the first Monday of each month and is available to read through our blog. The book review of the month and a fun library-related activity conclude each newsletter. If you haven’t yet, subscribe here to receive an email version of the newsletter and feel free to share your thoughts with us!