A lot of my library friends and acquaintances are attending ALA Annual right now, and I’m not with them. I’m sad that the non-atendees’ hashtag applies to me this year, because I love seeing old friends and making new ones and just generally geeking out with a bunch of other people who also love the work that we all do. But I also have a lot of good reasons for not going, and those are keeping me from being as bummed out as I thought I’d be.
The first reason I didn’t go is because I went to ACRL to be part of a panel presentation! That was big and exciting and I hope I get to do it many more times, but it was also expensive in terms of both money and time. I’m a PhD student, and I need to be careful of both those resources, so as soon as I got the ACRL acceptance I knew doing a second trip to the West Coast would be a long shot. Shameless plug: If you want to check out the topic, here’s our tumblr about the topic and the tweets from the session. My favorite was the person who said the session gave questions, not answers–my inner teacher doesn’t stop.
Speaking of teaching, that’s the next reason I’m not at ALA. I’m starting an intense teaching load on July 1 and I didn’t want to be jet-lagged and trying to do post-conference recovery while I was also trying to get fifty 18-year-olds excited about being in a summer bridge program and teaching them a course I’ve never done before.
But the most exciting reason why I’m not at Annual is because my brother is getting married in three weeks. That’s another investment of time and money for me, but I’m really excited to be part of this. I was friends with his fiance in high school so it’ll be great to have her as a sister starting July 18! So, instead of packing up fun yet professional clothes this week, I started working on putting together table decorations for the rehearsal dinner:
Besides all of those things, I’m also finishing up two papers from last semester because I took extensions in those classes. One of them is a draft of the prospectus (i.e. brief overview) of my dissertation. I’m pretty excited to get this finished; I think I’ve figured out how I’m making my library/info lit side and my English/composition side work together to tackle research pedagogy. I’m hoping to share that here really soon, so check back if you’re intrigued. :)