Updates Updates Updates

How about a pretty picture for a change?

I have not been able to keep up here on the blog lately, but things have been really crazy! These past two months have been full of change and opportunity. This is one of those boring, this is what’s happening with me types of posts. Hopefully, I’ll have more time to blog in the next few weeks. Okay, first I want to mention that I will be moving to Chicago at the beginning of next month. I will be working at the UIC Library as a resident librarian in their IDEA Commons. I am really excited to be joining their team. In my interview, one of the search committee members did a shout out to the ALA Think Tank. He mentioned that he knew I was a member, and that is the type of thinking they want to see happen there. Hurray for new ideas!

Last month, I also presented at my first webinar! It was a great pleasure to speak with Dr. Lanke and Tamara Capper. You can access the archived webinar here. I was really nervous about it, but it’s kind of like presenting at a conference without the people. In some ways, it makes it a lot easier. I was just talking into a phone and clicking on the computer. My general advice to anyone who in interested in presenting at a webinar: make notes, but don’t read off a paper. Actually, that advice works pretty much anytime you do any public speaking. I make notes to myself to mentally prepare and have something to refer to if I need, but I try not to just read my notes like a script. It sounds more dynamic that way in my opinion.

Last week, I submitted my first book review for publication. The Chronicle had a really interesting article call The Endangered Scholarly Book Review a few months ago. One of the major takeaway points was that writing book reviews is a good way for new grads and faculty to practice scholarly writing. Hopefully, the review will be published in Library Quarterly sometime in the future. I like keeping an eye out for calls for proposals. For a future post, I’d like to compile links to places for people to check for writing opportunities. If you are interested in academic librarianship, book reviews might be a good start to beef up your publications. I’m glad that I had to write book reviews and abstracts for a few of my classes in grad school. I found that really helped me prepare for this type of writing. I’m so used to writing for blogs, so writing a book review was a nice switch.

I also stepped away from HackLibSchool last month, and I’m having withdrawals, but I am happy that the blog is in good hands. Alright, I think that’s enough updates for now. Hopefully, I will have more time to write. It’s like exercise, the more you write, the better you are at it.

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Do It For You!

Today was the first time in a very long time that I just enjoyed something for just me. I’m a huge music fan (mostly indie and other random stuff) and I decided that today, I would indulge myself and listen to what makes me happy. About a year ago, my car stereo was stolen and I haven’t been able to replace it yet. I never thought that not listening to music, even the radio on my drive to school and work, would have an effect on me. I never considered the place that this thing that I enjoy had in my place. I often feel that at least for me, I put things I enjoy aside when I’m really busy. Let’s face it, we’re all busy, especially if you’re in grad school full-time and working. Life is crazy and there is always something you *should* be doing.

Last night I was talking with a friend and she asked me if I was a procrastinator. I had to say “yes” because it’s true. It’s not to say that I’m lazy though, I just take on so much at a time that I have to prioritize what I need to get done first. As library school students, we’re expected to do so much in order to have a chance at getting a job. Yes, it’s just a chance that someone might look at your resume and say “this person is qualified.” It’s a clear expectation that you have to do a million things to get experience and most of the time you’re not getting paid for it. To be honest, I think this can be really tiring, probably because I just hope that it will pay off. Experience goes a long way. However, working yourself to the bone and not taking time to just chill out is really dangerous. It’s just plain unhealthy. We all need outlets for ourselves. As a result, I put aside all the small wonders of life that I have grown to love. Forget creativity, forget taking walks, forget day dreaming. Alright, I still day dream all the time; but I realized today how much I’ve removed myself from doing what I love. I think it’s important for everyone to take some time out of the day for just themselves. Do something for you.

If you want to have a Party of One and dance in your room, go for it! If you want to write holiday cards and listen to music, GO FOR IT! A big part of my feeling burnt out is because I haven’t taken the time out this semester to just relax and do stuff for myself. I just hope that in the future I’ll be able to find a better balance. For those who have, I completely envy you.

And to get into the holiday mood and ENJOY something: