The CILIP Graduate Day (discussed below) also coincided with the launch of the Library Routes Project, which I blogged about in haste on Saturday (since deleted, as this one serves the same purpose but in proper detail). This came about after a post by Woodsiegirl (her Organising Chaos blog is terrific, I highly recommend subscribing) about her reasons for becoming a librarian in the first place. (It all started on Twitter, apparently; this whole thing was prompted by a mircoblog on a medium which I still refuse to participate in. Must stay obstinate and strong in the face of overwhelming evidence that Twitter is good! Must not join!) Jennie Law chimed and said perhaps we should all blog about our library roots / routes, and I suggested we formalise the whole thing into a movement, much like Library Day in the Life (our methodology borrows so liberally from that meme that I have in fact got Bobbi Newman’s blessing for Library Routes, as she had the idea for Day in the Life and it felt cheeky to just appropriate her Wiki system without some kind of discussion…) and link to all the blogs from a central Wiki which everyone can contribute to.
This was only 10 days ago, and in that time the Library Routes Project has gone from a tentative suggestion to a fully-fledged movement. People often talk about the pace with which things can happen in the Web 2.0 world, but it’s still breathtaking to see it in action and participate. Woodsiegirl, Jennie and I have collaborated, the Wiki has been set up at http://libraryroutesproject.wikkii.com (after a couple of initial server issues with Wikkii it’s all working fine now – if you’ve tried before and couldn’t get on, don’t let that put you off!) and there’s already been 25 entries. There’s been over 1000 views, which is fantastic – it means people are visiting the site and using it to find the roots / routes testimonies of their colleagues and peers (or in the case of Graduate Day attendees checking it out – future colleagues peers!) and we’re still only just starting to really publicise it. Hopefully in the long term it’ll become a really useful career’s resource, for those already in or thinking or joining the profession.
So go and take a look, register (it takes less than a minute) and link to your own roots and routes, and have a read of some of the contributions already there. And if you know of someone in the profession who does a really interesting and unique library job, or got to their current role via a bizarre or tangential route, nudge them in the direction of the Library Routes Project too.
As Woodsie girl says, Librarianship is so different to how those outside the profession understand it to be, it’s almost a ‘hidden’ profession. Let’s shed some light on it, and make it that much more visible.
p.s I realise I am yet to contribute to the Wiki myself, but my root / route post is on the way, I promise!