Fail Whale

When Twitter gets overwhelmed by too many people on the site you get a picture of a whale, entitled by the users, “Fail Whale.” That’s sometimes how I feel when it comes to all things library. As soon as I feel like I’m getting a handle on everything and I’m participating actively, both in my program and in the wider library world, I get that fail whale and feel like I’m still not doing enough. I think it comes from the social media world I try to be a part of. I follow so many people on twitter and on blogs and then I feel like what I’m doing is not enough, especially when I come across these amazing library students who already seem to be doing so much in the profession….and I just get so frustrated with myself and what feels like little bits I’m doing….

Deep breaths, right?

It probably started with trying to organize my schedule for the American Library Association Annual Conference, referred to as ALA 2010. It is in DC at the end of the month and will be my first conference. I kind of wanted to get one out of the way before I was really going to one as a professional. So I had planned to just go to the New Members Round Table events as well as a workshop on working in Federal Librarians plus hopefully seeing Jane from the Nicaragua libraries. But then I took a look at the 132 page booklet for the conference (and yes, that’s supposed to help by having it all in one place!). I then felt overwhelmed all over again! Fail whale! However, I have reminded myself that there is only so much that you can attend in 4 days without going crazy. So it will probably just be a lot of deep breaths and such along with comfy shoes and an empty bag to pick up all of that free swag from the venders. 🙂 And also try to take advantage of some of the just awesome things about being in DC. And finally, try to figure out if I could possibly see myself living there one day….
On top of that the Summer semester began at Simmons. I have to say, though, that I am so incredibly excited and motivated about my courses this summer. I’m taking Web Development and Information Architecture along with Organization and Management of Public Libraries. I fought kind of hard to get into the Web class off of the waitlist and I’m so glad I did. It’s going to be a ton of work and it really started running as of last Monday but I’m so pumped for it. Yes, you read that correctly, I’m really pumped for it! I’m not the most creative person but there is something about coding that I really like. I think it may be the numbers/problem solver in me. And I like how someone like me that can’t draw or paint can actually one day hopefully make something really beautiful or at least usable for the web. Yay! Also- the professor rocks and is so available and helpful and just all around great- I really feel like she is dedicated to us learning which is awesome.
The public libraries class is one that I have wanted to take from day one. And it seems more timely now than ever. The teacher is an adjunct faculty member with over 20 years working in public libraries and 20 more in education. He has some, as he calls them, “unpopular” views about public libraries and what they will mean in the future and I cannot wait to talk about them. We have only had one class but so far it seems like he is going to be engaging us in conversation, debate, and discussion much more than talking at us. Yay again!
So a lot of this overwhelm-ness is good! It’s great to be so excited and motivated by what I’m learning. I feel like it took a bit to get here. And I’m sure this semester will fly by as it’s about half of what a normal one is. Eek! So who knows how much I’ll be able to blog. However, I will at least hopefully give you some updates on my ALA Annual experience- if I survive!
Finally- in some other exciting library news and to toot my own horn a bit. I was one of the recipients of a scholarship from the New England Library Association (scroll down to see my name!). It barely even covers the expenses of one class but hey, every little bit helps. I’ll also get to go to the NELA conference in the Fall which should be a good experience. Perhaps at that one I could even meet a future employee….
Until we meet again…after DC!

One response to “Fail Whale

  1. Congratulations on the scholarship! Don’t sell yourself short…you are doing AMAZING things! Always busy. I’m glad your classes are going well so far. Sounds like you will have a busy but very interesting summer. Keep me posted on your DC trip if you want me to introduce you to any of my friends there. 🙂 Nora

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