Happy Tuesday, dear readers! It is time for some more Tuesday fun to get you through the day and week. So let’s just get to it, shall we?
I’ve quite enjoyed Unshelved comics since I was in library school, but I have to admit to last week’s Wednesday’s strip being particularly great. Just tear yourself away from your phone for a few minutes!
Also, I love this post about the best restaurants according to Yelp reviewers. A fun list and I love that a small place in Hawaii came out as number one. One of my favorites in Kauai didn’t make the list, but I still think you absolutely must try Puka Dog if on the South Shore. Also, I can totally vouch for the Cheese Board Pizza being fantastic. Just thinking about it makes me hungry!
I hope you have a great week, dear readers. I’ll be back soon with more news and notes. Allons-y!
Happy Friday, dear readers! I hope that your week has gone well. It has been another busy week here on campus, but I’m excited because we are finally getting some rain and I also get to read my students’ rough drafts today so hopefully that will be fun. Today I just thought I’d write a bit about life as an academic librarian as it may be useful for LIS graduates considering academic librarianship. So here we go!
In July of this year I will have been working as an academic librarian for six years. I can hardly believe that it has been that long already and am excited for the next six years. Along the way I have learned a thing or two about being an academic librarian and as I love sharing information I thought I’d share a bit in the form of “a day in the life” that seems popular in library land. While there is no typical day in the life of an academic librarian, I’m going to share a few different types of days that I have working as an academic librarian.
But first, a bit of context. I work on a campus where librarians are faculty members and we have instructional, research/professional development, university service, and community service requirements for retention, tenure, and promotion. Many academic librarian environments are like this and many are not. So all of talk about what I do during the day is within the context of spending most of my time, thus far, as an untenured library faculty member, and spending the last year as a tenured library faculty member. Just fair warning.
So I think, if I were to divide up the main categories or types of days I have as a librarian, there would be three main types of days. First: days when I have a lot of teaching and reference duties. Second: days when I have a lot of meetings. Third: days when I have time for research and writing, along with other project work.
The first two categories, teaching/reference and meetings, take up most of my days as a library faculty member or rather meetings take up a lot of time if I’m not careful about it. I love teaching and public service, so I don’t mind days when I have a lot of classes and reference or research appointments. These days usually fly by and I might teach a course-integrated instruction session, have some hours on the reference desk or be teaching a credit-level course for information literacy. Of course, prep time for instruction takes up some more of my time as a librarian, but happily in the summer there is always time to completely revamp my classes to make them more effective for the coming year.
Days where I have six to eight hours of meetings can be killer. Meetings are important for dissemination of information and for checking in, but back-to-back meetings are something I do not like and always try to avoid. Also, for those contemplating academic librarianship, meetings mean that work gets piled up, especially emails, especially at the end of the term, which still have to be dealt with after meetings are over. My suggestion: become an email guru and figure out a system to get through your inbox quickly and efficiently so you aren’t drowning in emails. I personally like logging out of my email and only checking it a few times a day so I can get through a bunch of email at once.
Also, with meetings, don’t be afraid to delegate work, you are a team or committee after all. Also, if at all possible, never go to a meeting without an agenda and never end a meeting without some action items. Make your meetings efficient, too.
One of my favorite types of days are days when I’m not scheduled in any meetings and can take the morning to work on my research and writing. I love research and I love sharing my research. Having a large block of time makes it much easier to write, for me, and make good progress on manuscripts. That being said, I’ve gotten much better (as I should after six years) of fitting in quick bursts of writing and research whenever I can, but having a block of time is the best. Also, days without meetings allow time for other projects, whether that be in the archives, figuring out analytics, completing collection development projects, or writing assessment reports.
Also, remember, although days as an academic librarian can be really, really busy (especially during the main academic terms), it is really important to take time to relax, breath, and step away in order to come back to things with clear eyes. Plus, being a calm colleague will make you a valuable colleague. Also, some of the most important activities you can do, especially as a new academic librarian, is to talk with your colleagues, hear what they are working on, and figure out how you can collaborate. One of the great joys is being able to collaborate with colleagues on projects and research.
I hope that gives you a helpful overview of a few days in the life of an academic librarian. It really is a great job.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend, dear readers. I’ll be back next week with more news, notes, and thoughts. Allons-y!
Happy Tuesday, dear readers! I hope your week is going well. I can hardly believe we are coming to the end of the term in a few weeks on my campus and that we are almost to the end of February already! Time is truly flying. But let’s take a break from time flying away from us to enjoy some fun.
First, I love this how-to on folding a towel bunny. They are so cute and perfect for spring decorating.
Then check out this amazing house renovated for cats. It is incredibly and I’d love to see a video of the cats running all over the ramps and ledges. Somehow I don’t think I’ll be renovating my apartment to look like that, though, any time soon.
Finally, in case you needed a reminder to not check work email before bed, head over to this Lifehacker article. Then, get some sleep.
I’ll be back soon with more news, notes, and thoughts. Allons-y!
Happy Tuesday, dear readers! I hope that your week is going well. Today I have just a couple of fun things to share so you can take a break in your busy day. So let’s get to it.
First, as always, I have to share the lovely This week in fonts. Just makes you want to go out and design something, doesn’t it?
And this amazing post from Gizmodo on old selfies that make Instagram look like a joke. I love photography and old photos, so this post was a wonderful thing to see. Everything old is new again.
Finally, I leave you with this new Simon’s Cat video to share with someone on Valentine’s Day. It is just perfect.
Have a wonderful day and I’ll be back on Friday with more news and notes. Allons-y!
Happy Friday, dear readers! I hope that you’ve had a lovely week. My week has been productive, but very busy. So when I was thinking of what to write about for this post, I thought a lot about what I do to stay current with trends, technology, and news in librarianship. I think it can be very easy to get overwhelmed with all the avenues of information in the world and it is definitely easy to feel information overloaded, too. So today, I thought I’d share some of my favorite blogs and websites that I use to keep updated on things. This list is by no means comprehensive and I’d love to hear about your favorite sites in the comments. So let’s get to it.
For tech news and tips, my favorite source is (no surprise) Lifehacker. The writers post timely articles and good snippets of advice for technology and productivity. While I don’t always agree with everything posted, it is a great one-stop-shopping for tech news.
I’m also a fan of Gizmodo, but less for tech news and more for the crazy stories about technology and other random pop culture things. Definitely a must for skimming through at the end of the day for me.
Also, I adore danah boyd’s work and blog: danah boyd ǀ apophenia. Lots of interesting writing and great research. I’m looking forward to reading her new book, It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens.
In library-focused blogs, I really enjoy INFOdocket for keeping up with what’s happening all over the world in libraries. I’m also a fan of Stephen Abram’s Stephen’s Lighthouse, mainly for the interesting infographics and graphics he shares. And it is always good to remember that really important news items and trends are blogged about by multiple blogs so you are sure to catch a piece of noteworthy news somewhere. (I remind myself of that so I don’t try to keep up with 500 blogs!)
I really do love typography, so naturally the I Love Typography blog is a favorite of mine.
For lovely, clever comics that come in handy for information literacy classes, my favorite is definitely xkcd. Always awesome when there is a new biology one I can use.
And because I love his work and his blog is a bunch of fun to, I highly recommend Neil Gaiman’s Journal.
A newer favorite thing is definitely Welcome to Night Vale. We enjoyed listening to the podcast driving down to see family this holiday season and always look forward to a new episode. I’d recommend giving it a chance, especially the summer reading program.
Finally, I love to bake and therefore love Joy the Baker’s blog. Tons of wonderful recipes to bake and to share. Our student assistants at the library are particularly fond of the chocolate bundt cake.
I leave you with 28 beautiful quotes about libraries from Stephen’s Lighthouse. Absolutely lovely.
I hope you have a wonderful weekend full of whatever you want it to be. I’ll be back next week. Allons-y!
Hello, dear readers! I hope that your week is going well. I just wanted to share a couple of videos to give you a work break for the day. So let’s get to it.
I can’t resist a cat video, so here is one to watch to see a cat do some awesome skateboard tricks.
Also, I’m a sucker for videos that compare current and historic urban landscapes, so I had to share this video of what London looked like in 1927 and 2013. It is really quite lovely.
I hope you have a wonderful week and I’ll be back on Friday with more news and notes. Allons-y!
Happy Friday, dear readers! I hope that your week is going well and you have a lovely weekend planned. I apologize for not posting anything on Tuesday; I’ve had a cold all week and have been slower than usual in my work. So today, we have a mix of fun in the forms of maps and tea, with a useful bit of news thrown in. So let’s get to it.
I really love traveling, not flying, but traveling and so I quite liked looking at these 20 awesome stickers from when your suitcase told stories. Makes me want to start planning a trip already.
And although this map won’t help me with planning a trip abroad, it is still a wonderfully detailed map of the internet. It reminds me a bit of the maps created by xckd and are just lovely, too.
Speaking of maps, I am rather partial to this map of world’s biggest tea drinkers. We in the United States need to do better with our tea consumption. I always enjoy traveling in countries that drink a lot of tea as it is always easy to get a good cup of tea. And also, in tea news, I just wanted to share the link to the online home of one of my favorite tea shops, Tealuxe. Massive thanks to my friends still in Boston who keep me stocked with my favorite teas!
And, finally, because we should have a bit of useful tech news, the classic Bic pen now works on your smartphone. I think this is just a lovely combination of the physical and digital worlds, even if it is a bit pricey. Very nifty.
So I’m going to go now and hope that my voice doesn’t give out while teaching and then go drink lots of tea with honey this weekend. I wish you all the best, dear readers, and will be back next week. Allons-y!