So, while I'm musing on standout things of 2014...
Library Camp Glasgow on Saturday 8 November.
This was the second annual Library Camp Glasgow, hosted in the Mitchell Library. It’s format followed the previous year in fairly relaxed unconference fashion. It started with a version of bingo as the ice-breaker, and then proceeded into One Minute Rants, and pitches for parallel sessions and the sessions themselves. There was Mitchell Tour for those who wished, the normal badge competition...
I say ‘normal’ badge competition, and that in itself is quite telling, it has become a normal established part of the year (though whether it’ll happen next year, or on what fashion, who knows, it is, after all, an unconference).
I opted for sessions on Changes to professional registration and CPD, Advocacy, Are we practicing what we preach, and 23 Librarians live.
So, a couple of months later, what stands out for me from these sessions?
Changes to professional registration and CPD
This is a weird one for me. I was hugely involved in setting up the changes, but due to various workplace changes had then lost track of it all a bit implementation-wise until earlier this year when I started getting (very slightly in comparison) involved again. So my ability to wax lyrical on the past was excellent, but it was really interesting to hear about the present. All in all I got the idea that what we’d set up re changes wasn’t working badly and had gone quite well so far. And that made me smile quite a lot.
This was kind of depressing overall. Nothing to do with the session, but a lot of advocacy discussions tend to feel quite bleak. Everyone sits round and says the same things, means the same things, they’re not remotely wrong things, it’s just they’re very difficult to make happen or to get outside the library profession. It is useful however to share news, and look at new initiatives. Looking at The Library A-Z was particularly fun. Advocacy is simply a long hard slog, no short-cuts or easy solutions. It needs to continue to happen simply because things would be worse without it.
Are we practicing what we preach?
This was really interesting because it was all about reflective practice. We discussed things like do we just repeat ourselves or do we actually take time to rethink, are we comfortable sharing, non-defensive reactions, how we reflect individually (huge variety of ways between the group). I think I’m unusual in keeping a daily work diary of everything i’ve done, but it’s mostly factual, a prompt, though it has some comment in it also. That ‘Opus’ as I call it is what I go through to then do my cpd log on the CILIP VLE every few months. Now technically I know I mean to do it every month.... in reality I don’t, it’s quite erratic. But there’s nothing erratic about the Opus that it’s drawn from. And at the end of the year there’s Revalidation submission through the CILIP VLE. Which kind of sounds fairly organised, but actually I find time for reflection is difficult to come by these days, and that's a real shame.
23 Librarians Live
This was kind of a face-to-face break-out version of the (now various!) 23 Librarians blogs. It kind of dealt with folk just discussing their career paths and jobs and aspirations and moving between jobs, and inside and outside the sector. I’ve got mixed feelings about this, it was a good session, I’ve just looked at far too many daily job alerts thudding into my home email in the last couple of years. Mostly in me a Saturday in-depth discussion of it all thus produces a wish to sigh and rub at my headache rather than a feeling of great enthusiasm.
I do like Library Camp Glasgow, and I’ll miss it if there isn’t a Scottish one next year. I’d like my enthusiasm back, and in the Professional Registration session it was fun to hear myself sounding like my old self, I could hear the fire and passion, which I’d really like back, sort of lost it a bit. Things that help to rekindle that are welcome.