Sally Stern-Hamilton was fired from her job as a library assistant in the Ludington library after writing a book titled Library Diaries.
Stern-Hamilton used a pen name and called the book fiction, but the cover featured a picture of the Ludington library. Promotional copy invited readers to “meet the naked patron, the greedy, unenlightened patrons, destination hell, the masturbator, horny old men, Mr. Three Hats, and a menagerie of other characters you never dreamed were housed at your public library.”
Not surprising, hometown patrons found this unflattering. Library Director Robert Dickson fired Stern-Hamilton, writing, “While you stop short of naming the individuals you targeted in your book, your detailed descriptions of their unique characteristics and mannerisms make them easily identifiable in our small community.”
Stern-Hamilton did not contest her firing. Judging from the publicity it aroused, getting canned might have been the best thing that could have happened for her literary prospects.
- How to Fire an Employee the Legal Way: 6 Termination Guidelines
- Don't throw the book at fired employee--one good reason will suffice in court
- Don't let managers fly solo on terminations
- When disciplining, focus on words and actions
- Don't punish staff for off-site political comments, but at work, it's your call