Today is the anniversary of my blog (Adam laughed at me when I used the word “blogiversary”). Part of me can’t believe it’s already been a year since I first started this blog. The other part of me can’t believe it’s only been a year for all I’ve written and for all that has changed! I started my blog without much of a sense of why I was doing it and found a voice and a passion that I hardly knew existed before I started. I found a passion for writing, for librarianship and for technology.
So much has happened in the past year. It’s been the craziest year of my life.
Me in November 2004
- Library school student
- Living in Florida
- Looking for first professional library job
- Didn’t know anyone who cared about technology in libraries
- Didn’t know what RSS was. Had never seen a wiki other than the Wikipedia. Never used del.icio.us or any other social bookmarking system.
- Had never administered a server or set up blog software in my life
Me in November 2005
- Distance Learning Librarian
- Living in Vermont
- Part of amazing community of blogger librarians
- Constantly learning new things about technology and its applications in libraries. Major user of social software
- Run two wikis for the library community
- Administer library server at work. Set up wiki and blog software on my own (gee, that wasn’t really very difficult!)
- Am a real live professional writer with a book deal!!!
What a rollercoaster! For me, the biggest shock of all is that last point. I have a book deal. I have a book deal. No matter how many times I say it, and even though my wrists hurt from working on it, it doesn’t seem real. I don’t want to go into too many details yet, but I will be writing a book about technology in libraries over the next 8 months. It wasn’t something I’d thought about doing at this point in my career, but the opportunity presented itself and, as my husband said, I’d be certifiable to give up the opportunity to write a book! After all, it’s something I’ve dreamed of doing since I was a child and never, ever, ever thought would really happen. The whole thing is still a bit surreal to me, but I’m so happy to have this opportunity!
It’s been quite a year! I can hardly believe where I was at one year ago versus where I am now. My blog has really captured the low points and the high points in my year, so looking back at what I’ve written helps me to see how far I’ve come. Here is a rundown of my blog year.
Total words written: 136,696
Total posts: 302
Number of Posts: 27
Words written: 8,786
Favorite Post: The great librarian shortage debate
Important Event: Starting my blog, of course!
Number of Posts: 53
Words written: 16,361
Favorite Post: Dispatches from the job hunt
Important Event: I graduated with my MLIS! No job in sight, though. 🙁
Number of Posts: 63 (yowza!)
Words written: 25,056
Favorite Post: Economics 101 for the ALA
Important Events: Had my first out-of-state interview. Didn’t get the job. Learned not to go to out-of-area interviews where I had to pay my own way 100%.
Number of Posts: 24
Words written: 12,453
Favorite Posts: What a wonderful wiki world and The art of the interview.
Important Event: Moved to Chicago.
Number of Posts: 13
Words written: 6,393
Favorite Posts: Federated searching and why users aren’t finding/using your electronic materials and Podcasting in education
Important Events: First out-of-state interview that paid for me to come. Didn’t get the job. Spent weeks and weeks preparing the three required talks for the interview. Heartbreaking.
Number of Posts: 20
Words written: 10,848
Favorite Posts: The Failure of Middleware series (Parts one, two, three, four, five, six, and seven are linked here) and The innovation gap
Important Events: Started ALA Chicago 2005 Wiki! Job hunt not going well. I start wondering if I’ll have to go back to social work to make ends meet.
Number of Posts: 19
Words written: 10,037
Favorite Posts: Job search hoops and Library services to distance learners
Important Events: Suffered through the worst interview I ever had. Starting to feel really hopeless. Had phone interview for my current job.
Number of Posts: 17
Words written: 7,816
Favorite Posts: Do you like your patrons? and ALA Day 2: Loving that “old school” style
Important Events: I got a terrific job! Went to ALA Annual and met many of my blogger heroes.
Number of Posts: 12
Words written: 12,227
Favorite Posts: This was a good month for me without the job search hanging over my head. The job hunt: What I learned, ALA Wiki: What I learned and what I’m doing with it and The “kept-up” distance learning librarian were my faves.
Important Events: Bought first home in Vermont! Started the Library Success Wiki.
Number of Posts: 17
Words written: 6,594
Favorite Post: Loving the long tail
Important Events: Started my job as Distance Learning Librarian at Norwich University. Moved to Vermont.
Number of Posts: 12
Words written: 7,085
Favorite Posts: Survey of the Biblioblogosphere: Results and Finding a job and finding lasting love.
Important Event: Had my first article published in WebJunction.
Number of Posts: 19
Words written: 9,868
Favorite Post: Librarians in Academia: Faculty or Support Staff? and New communities, physical and virtual.
Important Event: OMG! I’m writing a book!!!
Favorite Post: So far, Remember to share and play nice
Important Event: Writing and writing and writing
Thanks to everyone who has influenced me over the past year (and before). A year ago, I never would have thought that I could write anything interesting enough that would attract an audience beyond my husband and parents. Now I’m going to be writing a book. I owe so much to my husband for encouraging me to stop ranting to him and start ranting to the world. 😉 I would never have gotten to where I am now without the bloggers who have welcomed me, challenged me, inspired me and given me the courage to try new things. I have made so many wonderful friends through the simple act of writing down what I think. Insane. Thank you all.
If anyone has some sage advice and wisdom on book writing , I’d love to hear it. This is completely new territory for me and a book is just so big. It’s comforting, though, to see that I’ve written more in my blog over the past year than I will have to write for this book. 🙂
Thank you all for reading my blog and inspiring me to continue writing it.
Congrats on the book deal, and happy blogiversary!
Congratulations! That’s a wonderful achievement.
I have never written a book but I did write a thesis. You just have to keep at it, writing every day. Even while you’re conducting your research, gathering your references, write, write, write! The APA Publication Manual and Strunk and White’s Elements of Style were my constant companions.
Expect all your ideas to come to you when you’re taking a walk and don’t have a pen and paper with you. 😉
When you’re done, it’d be great if you could summarise the whole process for the rest of us, from idea, to deal, to writing and publication.
Fiona, you are so right about when ideas come to you. I couldn’t think of how to start a section of my first chapter and it occurred to me in the shower as I was rushing to get ready for work. I jumped out soaking wet, grabbed a pen and paper and wrote it down so I wouldn’t forget. I think I need to keep a memo pad near me at all times!
Just like I wrote about the whole job hunt, I will definitely write about the book experience too. For the next year it will be the only thing on my mind, so I’m sure all my blog posts will be related to book writing or the subjects I’m writing about. 😉
Congratulations on providing a whole year’s worth of great posts! I’ve just finished my MLIS and am beginning my own job hunt; your blog is really inspiring and reassuring to me, not to mention engaging and informative. Thanks for sharing your experiences and point of view.
Congratulations on your book deal! I found that my first book launched my career into the stratosphere, and I wish the same result for you.
Be prepared, however, to not make much money on the whole experience. In library publishing, it seems to be more about exposure and line items on the resume (not bad things, certainly), since no library author gets rich on this. I’ve actually had some books pay worse (when put into an hourly wage) than just about anything else I could have done with the time except perhaps dig ditches.
So do it for the joy, do it for the sharing, do it for the notice, do it because you’ve wanted to do it since a child. Do it so we can all get the benefit of your perspective. And take the time and make the effort to do it well, since it will reflect on you for many years to come, and it should reflect well. Best of luck!
Very good to hear, Meredith. Congrats on the book deal. I am sure your book will inspire, just like your blog does. Now if we could figure out a way to feed that book of yours into my aggregator, that would be sweet. 😉
Hmmm… I’ll have to work on that, Chad. 😉
Congratulations on your year of blogging and on your book deal! How exciting! I can give you lots of advice on how not to work on your book (among them: start library school, start a blog, work multiple jobs, play with things on the internet. . . ). I am sure, however, that all these things will actually feed your book and your work on it. Good luck! You’re one of *my* blogger heroes.
As a reader, *I* can’t believe you have only been doing this for a year. Keep up the good work.
Wow – has it only been a year?? Thanks for writing and sharing all your experiences and expertise with the rest of us. (I’m trying to convince some of my colleagues that a wiki ala ALA Chicago 2005 would be a good idea for the Australian Library and Information Association conference next year… especially for visitors to Perth, Western Australia.)
I look forward to reading about your writing process and other adventures…
Congratulations! I just stopped by to say thanks. Your post on the biblioblogosphere finally inspired me to start blogging.