By Roz Kohls
DASSEL, MN Linda Thompson of Dassel, the new librarian at Dassel Public Library, calls herself a “natural” librarian.
She defines a natural librarian as one who likes to read, encourages others to read, and is always curious and interested in information, she said.
Thompson has been going to the library since “ I was ‘that’ high,” she said, gesturing the size of a preschooler.
Thompson will be working part time in Dassel, 12 hours a week, during the new expanded hours to 7 p.m., and on Saturdays. She also will be substituting at Litchfield’s library, also part of the Pioneerland Regional Library system.
Previously, Thompson worked part time at the Hutchinson Public Library for three years. She enjoyed her work there, but wanted to work closer to her home at Big Swan Lake, north of Dassel.
“It’s nice to live about six minutes away from work,” Thompson said.
Thompson, who is originally from north Minneapolis, lived in Somerset, WI, up until about four years ago. Her husband, David, works for 3M, and was transferred to Hutchinson then.
Their daughter, Lisa, still lives in Amery, WI. Their son, Eric, lives in Chisago City, and their other son, Ryan, lives in Isanti.
At an early age, Thompson learned the Dewey Decimal System for organizing books in a library. She shelved books in Woodbury, and she also worked in the library at the middle school in Somerset, she said.
When the Thompsons moved to the Dassel area, Thompson wanted to work at the Dassel library then, but there were no openings. A woman at the Hutchinson library was about to retire, so Thompson applied there. A year later, she was hired.
“I learned a tremendous amount,” Thompson said.
She has been taking classes, and online classes about integrating information through libraries with the Internet, called Web 2.0.
“It’s really the way it’s going,” Thompson said.
Using the computer has made locating books for patrons such a breeze, that Thompson listed that task as her favorite part of the job. All of the libraries in the state are linked, so even a patron’s most odd or unusual book request can be fulfilled, she said.
A courier picks up or delivers books every Tuesday and Friday, she said.
In addition to locating books and information, Thompson likes to encourage others to read. Two of her favorite books are “The Shack,” by William P. Young, and “The Life of Bees.”
“The Shack” is thought-provoking and well-written. “The Life of Bees,” is a story about an abused little girl, she said.
Thompson currently is reading “The Sudoku Puzzle Murders.”
“It was very fun. I like mysteries,” Thompson said.
Thompson also has been reading “Eat, Pray, Love,” by Elizabeth Gilbert. It’s about a woman who travels and learns about life.