Library Day In the Life

Next week, I am going to be writing a series of Library Day In the Life posts. It’s not necessarily out of a sense of nostalgia for biblioblogsphere days past, although I suppose that is part of it.

But I was inspired by something Bobbi Newman wrote when she introduced the original project back in 2008 (and that she referenced in the post announcing the end of the project):

If I post about this and get others to do it too, it will allow librarians to share amongst ourselves (our positions are changing so rapidly) and also to let the public know what we do.

Jumping off from that, I want to write about what I am doing as a librarian in a non-library environment. I’ve always found it hard to describe what I do to other librarians, and my previous attempts in participating in this project focused too much on minutiae and less on the broader context of my work.

The longer I have been at this job, the more I’ve struggled to do connect what I do with what librarians do in general. While I do have certain traditional library duties (electronic resources management, for example), I also do a lot that falls into the “hey I didn’t learn this in library school” category. And, to be honest, a lot of what I read in library magazines and journals goes over my head these days. So this is an opportunity for me to lay out what I do and then see where it all fits into the broader profession.

My other goal in doing this project relates to personal productivity. I am a bit obsessed with articles about productivity, even though I think about three quarters of them are bunk. But there is one bit of advice that comes up frequently that I can relate to:

You can even build time for unconscious thought into your schedule. Ellevest founder Sallie Krawcheck blocks out the first 90 minutes of her day for that purpose. “I head to the kitchen, get a cup of coffee, and sit in front of the computer and just start writing,” she says.

“I tend to wake up with ideas, and I try to get them all out of my head and written down before my conscious mind starts to censor itself.” The point isn’t to mine for brilliance, just to shake everything loose and sort through it later.

10 Expert Tips To Be More Productive In 2016
Fast Company, 12/31/2015

I want to get into the habit of writing every day to help me get a better handle on everything I have on my plate at work. If I get my thoughts in order first thing in the morning, I can set an informal agenda for my day.

So that’s what I aim to accomplish next week. Of course, there’s always a chance that a random snowstorm will shut down DC, so you may find that by the middle of the week my posts are more about Mario Kart and playing board games with my son. I will probably struggle to connect Alhambra to what I learned in library school, though.

1 Comment

  1. I love this idea and have struggled with the same dilemma myself. Look forward to the series.

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