Ames Public Library: A Story, by You

Ames Public Library: A Story, by You

by Keirra McFadden

Here at Ames Public Library we know we provide something different for everyone. We want to know more about the community members we serve every day and how the Library plays a role in their lives. This is why we are asking--what does Ames Public Library mean to you? We want to see how you view the Library and to accomplish this we are asking you to submit a story and photo you believe tell your experience with the Library. 

If I was to turn in my story, I would submit a photo of me working on this article. Accompanying it would be a story about my desperate, and I mean desperate, search for an internship. You see, for my degree at Iowa State University I have to rack up 400 hours of an internship to graduate. The internship also had to pass specific criteria and get approved which meant it was no easy feat. As you can imagine, finding an internship matching the criteria was nerve racking. I had spent months searching for an internship and Ames Public Library was my saving grace. I will never forget finding out I was hired and that they would work with me to accommodate my criteria. 

The “Share Your Story” campaign is actually one of my bigger ideas here as an intern. I realized if the Library had affected my life then it has probably affected others as well. Then I thought: What if we highlighted those stories? The stories that hold special meaning to you. Stories that may seem small alone, but that are part of the bigger story of our community.

For example, I might not benefit from storytimes but maybe they were just the activity your children needed, or maybe you connected with other parents and caregivers. Our book clubs might be your personal time of the week. Maybe you met your significant other at a program, or maybe you switched career paths because of a book you checked out here. The stories can be long, short, life changing, funny, sentimental, or just something special to you. Along with that, the accompanying photo can be anything that brings your story to life. 

You do not have to be a modern day Charles Dickens, William Shakespeare, or Jane Austen to submit and enter. We want to hear your experience in your own words. Besides, if you talk about something you’ve experienced, your heart and passion will be there. If you are wanting some extra help or some inspiration you might check out some of our resources. We have an extensive collection of autobiographies, multiple online writing resources, and books on how to develop your writing skills. 

Don’t think you’ll be able to find the words? Don’t fret--a picture is worth a thousand words! We would love any picture you wanted to submit, and all we would need is a small description along with it.  

If you’re under 18, consider working with an adult to submit your story so it can be posted online. Not sure how to submit your story? Ask a librarian for help! Participants also have the option of remaining anonymous. We know there are multiple reasons someone might not want their name published and we respect that. All participants will still be entered into the drawing for the prizes. 

Submit your story online during the month of October for a chance to win a $25 gift card to a downtown Ames business! Winners will be randomly selected from all the entries. Also, be on the lookout for your submissions and see what other people submitted on social media and our website. 

We can’t wait to see your story!