2014 was an interesting and – reasonably – productive year. I successfully (finally) completed my ACLIP portfolio; I joined the committee for the Yorkshire and Humberside branch of CILIP (I’m the social media manager, which basically means updating our Twitter and Facebook); I independently ran an (admittedly small-scale) event at Leeds Central Library, where I work; I helped organise a regional Library Camp (again, fairly small-scale) and I also fell asleep while my wife gave birth to our first child. With all this activity, I finally feel like I’m gaining the confidence to develop in the direction(s) I want to develop and I’m aiming to be as productive as I possibly can be during 2015 in order to continue that development. So, here are my (initial) goals for the coming 12-months, organised into loose categories:
- Start blogging more regularly! I’ve avoided this in the past – partly out of a lack of confidence that I have anything interesting to add to what other, more qualified, people already write, but partly also out of lack of time to blog with the frequency I would like. I’ve now realised that doesn’t matter: I can blog weekly or monthly or bi-monthly – in short, whenever I do something, or think something, that I feel worth recording for my own sake. It doesn’t even matter whether anyone else reads it.
- This also includes doing more personal-based tweeting. I’m quite happy tweeting from the CILIP account (and this one), but still lack the confidence to express my own personal opinions.
- MCLIP. I’m attending a Portfolio Building Workshop in early January as a starting-point and am keen to really get stuck into this as soon as possible. It’s highly unlikely I’ll ever have the finances to do an actual MA in Librarianship (or similar), so the MCLIP is one of my key priorities this year
- Register and train as a CILIP mentor for ACLIP candidates. Again, I’m attending some training early this year toward this and I’m very keen to get started. Something like this will be great for (a) confidence; (b) networking; (c) expanding skill set
- Starting (and completing) MOOCs – in particular this course run by R.David Lankes. I’ve had Lankes’ book hanging around for ages and have been meaning to run through the course since last summer – but other things got in the way. 2015 is the time to get this done.
- Continue CILIP Regional Member Network activities – widen and deepen social media profile of group. Maintain weekly round-ups of events in libraries across the region. Continue developing a directory of libraries in Yorkshire and Humberside. Write an article for Update magazine (about those round-ups?)
- Library camp. I certainly enjoyed helping organise the Camp in August and feel it could have been more successful given a different set of variables. I’d like another crack at it, especially now that I’d feel more confident in the organisation/shaping of such an event
- Continue Community Engagement activities for Information and Research department – including weekly tweets, Secret Library blog entries, department newsletter, etc. Also includes project to catalogue stock, especially runs of journals, and ‘curation’ of reference-websites
- Community Engagement also means events. I’ve wanted to organise an event based around departmental holdings for some time. One idea I have is to a public event based around specific anniversaries coming up in the next year – e.g. Waterloo. This would involve the themed-cataloguing of all items held in the Information and Research department that touch on Napoleon, the Napoleonic Wars and other related topics. Including journal articles where relevant. The public would attend a ‘workshop’ (maybe 1-2 hours) where we would explain in some depth the nature of those holdings (which would include any Special Collections items). Possibly in conjunction with Local and Family History library, who could outline the ways of tracing ancestry back to the early 19th-century and how to uncover whether ancestors fought in the relevant campaigns?
- I’d also like to think around how to promote our stock to children/young adults. That’s more difficult, but there are surely ways (probably in conjunction with the relevant Librarians). Same goes for integrating our department into Digital Engagement events (of which there may be developments this year)
- Have another look at increasing usage of the Language Exchange scheme. This was the focus of the event I organised and ran earlier in 2014. It was relatively successful and I feel we could easily do something similar (and better) in 2015.
- Gain some experience working outside the Central library and develop a better sense of the various ways public libraries interact with their diverse communities. I’m more than likely going to be spending an afternoon at the Compton Road Community Hub in January, which is a good start
- Indexing Yorkshire Evening Post articles connected to Leeds United. Long-term project to be (hopefully) completed in time for 100th-anniversary of the club in 2019. I’d envisage an event being held at the library, displaying our various holdings related to the club (possibly in conjunction with other holders of items); the index of articles would be the ‘unique selling point’ to structure/promote an event around (nothing like it currently exists and it would be a valuable tool for researchers)
- Also attempting some indexing of local and family-history related resources that are available via social-digital media (including YouTube, Flickr, etc). Along similar lines to personal project immediately below
- Continue YouTube-football-digital curation project. Consider expanding in other thematic directions (e.g. history, culture (music), etc)
- Organise and run a ‘football camp’ similar to Library Camp
In reality I’ll probably only complete a fraction of these goals. But the setting down on paper (screen) is half the battle; I now have a (reasonably) structured sense of what I want to achieve and a rough sense of which tasks should be prioritised when. All that remains now is to begin. I can’t think of any way to finish this piece. THE END.