Work Photos

A photographic look into my library life:

Each month my library puts out a magazine featuring our upcoming events. Rather than using stock photos, they use pictures of staff members. So, hey, look, there’s me modeling for a Photoshop class. I’m famous! (Also, apparently I have red highlights.)

This is what I made while on the clock the other day. Clearly I missed my calling as a professional finger-paint artist. (I’m hosting a train-themed program for preschoolers in two weekends, and after storytime we’re finger painting.)

All in all, being a librarian is pretty great. We get crazy patrons, but really amazing ones, too. The biggest downside? Wanting to read everything. Seriously. My TBR pile is ridiculous.

Taken Librarian

In my mind, this is the kind of librarian I am...only minus the gun. (Image via screwydecimal.com)

This has been a huge week. A huge week. I have so much to tell you all…but i’ll start with this: I have a new job!

If you recall, my current position as a Reference Librarian is temporary, so recently I’ve been applying to other jobs. A few weeks back I had an interview for a dream job. I didn’t hold my breath. But then they called me back for a second interview. I was getting excited. Then they called my references. I was panicking. Then they called me in for athird interview. I was confused, but also still totally on board.

So my third interview was today and as you may have guessed…I got the job!

I’m transferring from academic libraries to public libraries (a jump I’ve wanted to make). I’m going to be a Branch Librarian at our local county library, so we’re not moving. It’s a fantastic position at an amazing library. I’ll get to have my hand in a little bit of everything, including children’s programming, which is what I really want to do.

Woo hoo!

It’s bittersweet  because I really do love my co-workers. They’re all so lovely. But still – I’m so excited!

All At Once

I’ve heard quite a few times that you should never start querying a book while pregnant. The stress, anxiety, excitement, and disappointment are enhanced due to hormones and general craziness. Well, thankfully, I’m not pregnant, and don’t plan on being for a while. HOWEVER, I am querying during a different type of stressful time.

Job hunting.

My temp job at the library (which I love) is ending in April. It was actually supposed to end earlier, but they gave me to the end of the semester. If I get offered a job prior, of course I’ll just switch jobs sooner. My bosses here are incredibly nice and supportive. (In fact, before each interview, my co-workers literally cheer me on. I can almost imagine pom poms. I love them.)

That said, I’ve been practically glued to my e-mail and phone. Each message could dictate my future! It’s crazy, and incredibly nerve wracking. And the thing is – it’s every day. Query responses don’t come in overnight, and neither do decisions after applications or interviews.

On top of it all, my best friend is in labor. Today. I’ve been texting with her husband (who, incidentally, I befriended first back in college) all morning, getting every update. (Latest update, which has been my favorite: “They broke her water. There’s a baby insider her running out of water!” If you get this reference, we’ll be friends forever.)

So perhaps this wasn’t the best time to query, but honestly…I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Despite the stress and anxiety, it’s thrilling. Each “1 new message” could change my whole future. I live for moments like that.

You never know what might happen, right?

More on this later…

Happy

My husband started a music blog last week. Not just any music blog – he only highlights British indie music from the mid-late 90s that he  enjoyed while growing up in London. Some bands made it, most didn’t, and he’s kind of discussing what he liked about them, and seeing if any of them held up over time. It’s not something everyone will, but he loves it. He loves talking and writing about music, dissecting it for hours. It makes him ridiculously happy. So, I’m really glad he started the blog. (Because, let’s be honest, I can only humor him for so long.) (I kid.)

My two lives (writing & librarianship) kind of cosmically collided head on a few years ago. I always knew I wanted to be a writer, but didn’t know what kind of one (thus my explorations in journalism). I always knew I wanted to work with books, but didn’t know how (thus my book selling and teaching careers). So I read and researched. I started writing for me, and figuring out the life I wanted. Young adult books made me happy. I wanted to recommend them to children. And maybe write one myself.

I remember taking my young adult class in library school (yes, that was a class, and yes it was amazing) and gazing over the articles and books assigned. By the end of the semester, each one had tons of bright yellow highlights. Each had bookmarked pages, and underlines and stars. Each was dissected. Each was discussed with S (to his amusement, I’m sure) for hours upon hours. It didn’t feel like work. Writing those papers, reading those books – I would have done it for fun.

So now I’m the cusp of it all coming together. I’m a librarian (yay!) and I wrote my first book, working on my second. I’m doing it all because it makes me happy. Because let’s be honest…I may never make a mark on a young child’s life with my book recommendation or book written, but what I do? It makes me so, so happy.

So what makes you happy?

Librarian Up For Grabs

I’m currently in an interesting position with my career. I finished my graduate degree in August and was hired as a Reference Librarian the week I graduated. It was amazing, really, and I was fully aware of how lucky I was. The job, while supreme, was temporary, but that was okay. I felt like it was meant to be.

And it has been. I truly have loved every moment of working as an academic reference librarian. I now know that I was right to get into this field, as I finally feel at home. However, my time with the position is about to end. If I could stay here, I would in a heartbeat, but I can’t. So now comes the big question – what do I do next?

When you hear “librarian,” I’m sure most people just assume they’re the people who check books out. Right? Wrong. There’s so much more to the profession. For instance, as a reference librarian for a college, I teach classes on how to find scholarly information, I create reference guides for majors and minors, I answer research questions, and I work with students to assist them in completing their papers. There’s more, but that’s the basics.

As it turns out, being hired as a librarian (and not simply a library aide or clerk) was a blessing and a curse. A blessing because it gave me more experience than I could have dreamed of. A curse because now I want to stay one, with only so much experience. Many libraries hire librarians with years of experience – I have but a handful of months.

So now I’m at a cross roads. I’m about to end this job, and search rapidly for another. I’m not sure what will happen, and that part scares me. But I also know something will come up. Something perfect. Something that screams Lauren! and will help me on my professional adventure.