Do you have a question about my services or related details? This page may have the answer. (If not, please contact me.)
Rates and payment
Information about rates and payment is on its own page.
About my services
What happens if you can’t find information?
I start with initial searches about your question. If I don’t find meaningful results in the first 15-20 minutes, I will let you know, and we can adjust your question or I can refund the unused portion of your payment. (Note that meaningful results may not be the answer you expected!)
Do you reuse material?
If I have recently done research on a related question, I may use that material to help answer yours. If that is the case, I will factor it into the time estimate I give you (which means you save money.)
At times I may include links to relevant pages on my personal website or blogs that explain a topic in detail. I will always direct you to at least two other independent resources if I do. (If for any reason this is not possible, I will explain why.)
Do you answer all questions?
I reserve the right to decline specific topics or questions. For example, I will not research anything I’m not willing to have linked with my home computer, including racist or hate groups, or questions that are specifically about harassing or harming others (such as doxxing).
I also will not violate copyright to answer a question. (I have a broad view of fair use, but I won’t tell you where to find a complete recent book still under copyright for free online, basically.)
There are also questions where I am just not the best resource, like detailed local history or genealogy questions.
On the other hand, I know an awful lot of people with an awful lot of different interests and identities. Please don’t be afraid of asking me for help for sincere questions even if you think they’re a bit out there.
Do you really mean the “no topic too weird?”
I do. There are some questions I won’t answer, but that’s not because they’re too weird for me. (See the immediately previous question for the things I won’t answer.)
I’ve been around the Internet for a long time, including some of the more unique bits of it, and I believe strongly that people having information about stuff they care about is better than not having it. And let’s face it, a lot of us have interests we may not want to ask the public librarian in the place we live. (Public librarians are great, and they’ve heard a lot of things that might surprise you. But it’s good to have other options.)
Are you available for chat or video chat?
In most cases, I think a written report will be most useful – this lets you go back and review the information easily and explore it over time.
For some questions (or for accessibility reasons) it may make sense to consider text-based chat or video chat. There’s an additional fee for this and available times are significantly limited by my schedule. It may take multiple weeks to find a time that works for us both, especially if you’re more than an hour or two outside US Eastern Time.
What if I need information quickly?
Please ask, and I can best tell you about the options. There is an additional fee for rush work that depends on the number of hours involved and how quickly you want the response. Note that I don’t check my email for this site during my day job work day, so may not see inquiries immediately.
Would you donate your services to our non-profit org or fundraiser?
I’m glad to consider it!
For non-profits, I am glad to offer a discount (based on the amount of work required) to share resources about making your events or materials more accessible. I’m glad to consider discounts for other services as well. Please let me know more about your organisation’s goals when you contact me.
I am glad to donate an hour or two of services for a few fundraisers a year. If you’d like me to consider your favourite, please tell me about it through the contact form and provide a link to any additional information about the project or beneficiary.
In 2018, I’ve donated an hour of research as an auction item for Con or Bust, which helps send fans of color to science fiction and fantasy conventions.
What if I’d like to pay you to learn witchcraft?
This is one of the perennial topics in the witchcraft and Pagan community. I have decided I prefer a clear line: I don’t charge for witchcraft training or related topics, but do charge for work relating to my professional librarian skills and training. So, talking about how to research Pagan topics, I’ll charge for. Teaching you how to do ritual directly, I won’t.
I’m glad to talk about possibilities for witchcraft training if you live near me, or workshops other places if my direct expenses are covered. Check out my personal site for group work and training for more information.
This site is designed to be accessible via design choices, use of alt-text, and other tools. If you have problems with any part of the site, please let me know.
I have specific accessibility needs. Can you help?
I’d be glad to. I normally provide written reports as a PDF or as a Google Doc. If you’d prefer another format and I can get access to it, I’m glad to do that. My text formatting is done through use of styles, to provide headers and other navigational features. Course materials with audio or video have captioning and multiple methods of accessing the content.
If you prefer specific formats of material, or have access issues, I am delighted to take those into consideration when providing resources (including noting detailed information about captioning, alt-text for images, and other relevant factors.)
Please let me know what your preferred tools or needs are.
I have trouble reading text. Can you still help me?
Yes, I can. Some options include:
- Text or video chat (note that there may be limited scheduling options. Additional fees may apply, though I do discount for access needs.)
- Simplified language
- Formatting to your preference for readability
- Use of fonts that support dyslexic readers
Please let me know your preferences when arranging for services. My form asks for accessibility information, or you can use the contact form or email me.
Why the mix of British and American spelling?
I was born and raised in the United States, but my father was English and my mother grew up in the United Kingdom. I use British spellings in less formal writing as a reminder of where I’ve come from. Since this can be a bit of an odd mix, I can edit documents to use standard US spelling and punctuation on request.
What does your degree mean?
Professional librarians normally hold a Master’s degree in Library Science or a closely related degree. (Mine is a Master’s in Library and Information Science: different programs use different names.)
This is normally about 2 years of classes, though many people take longer and work on the degree part-time. You can learn more about library education and how the MLIS works at a page on my Seeking site.
Last edited July 17, 2017