Thursday, December 27, 2012

Towards the summit


Source: Flickr user Loren Sztajer  
Oh, winter break, how sweet you are.

I'm sitting in my parent's house, in my Mom's home office. She really has created a beautiful space, and it would be a shame not to take advantage of it for some writing. Especially when there is a full pot of coffee down the hall and my hometown is buried in a few inches of freshly fallen snow.

I thought I'd write up another year in review post. I wrote one at the close of 2009, when I first started the blog and had just finished my first semester in library school. And I really enjoyed writing it. Yes, "best of" lists and "year in reviews" are cliche and overdone, but reflection is an important part of the human experience. So here it goes...

2012 was a big year. Biggest accomplishment: finishing my Masters. Not going to lie, it feels really good to have gotten the degree before I hit thirty. Not only am I thankful for the opportunities it is going to provide, I am thankful for all the amazing people I met along the way.

Next big accomplishment: landing a full time job. For the past two months, I've been the Resource Sharing Library Technician in the Public Access Services department of Portland State University's Library. Not only do I feel incredibly lucky to have a job in a market where the typical new-graduate experience is to piece together part time, on-call, and temporary jobs but the job that I landed is amazing. I oversee the inter-consortum borrowing and lending of library materials, working with an amazing team who process a few hundred books a day. It's so wonderful to be back in access services, especially at such a large university with such a dynamic circulation desk. While I have loved my experience with digital library production, I am thinking my home is going to be in the public services arena of librarianship. And I'm really looking forward to making PSU my new home.

Other accomplishments of the year: working on my first conference committee, meeting and handing over my cover letter to Rachel Maddow, and volunteering with EveryLibrary helping to raise money for the very first National PAC in support of local libraries.

Like I said, 2012 was a big year. And I hope that 2013 will be even bigger.

The only specific projects I have coming down the pike are a few possible writing projects and helping out when I can on the Infocamp Portland 2013 planning committee. There is nothing concrete to base my optimism on other than the fact I am optimistic. My path into professional librarianship is unfolding in the same way a trail up a mountain does. It takes lots of little steps to get to the top. But the steps add up, and pretty soon you can see how far you've come. At the close of 2012 I am reaching a vantage point: I  see how far I've come, and the path to the top is become much clearer.

I know that optimism for the sake of optimism is probably just a self-fulfilling prophecy. But I am okay with that. I'm doing my best to take the positive energy I do have in my life and running with it... up the path and towards the summit.