My interview with Jeanne, blogger at Spellbound Blog
Naomi: What is your dream job and why?
Jeanne: I am lucky that my current position is pretty close to my dream job. I wanted a position in which I could combine my experience and interests, bringing together my strong tech background, training and interest in archives and my desire to reach out and help people find what they need. In my current position at the World Bank I am doing exactly that!
Naomi: What blogs should we be reading?
Jeanne: This is a hard one. I do follow a number of blogs on my RSS feed reader, but honestly I find most of the blog posts I read these days via Twitter – often including the ones I follow anyway since I follow the author’s twitter feeds as well.
Here are a few I usually manage to keep up to date with:
- Archives Next: http://www.archivesnext.com/
- Managing Metadata: http://library.caltech.edu/laura/
- Flowing Data: http://flowingdata.com/
- Diary of a Digital Archives Specialist (DAS) Student: http://dasstudentdiary.blogspot.com/
Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Jeanne: I have been to some amazing and stunning libraries around the world, but my favorite one has to be the one in which I first discovered my love for reading: Reed Memorial Library in Carmel, NY.
Here is their blurb on the library’s history:
Dedicated in 1914, the Library was built by Arrietta Crane Reed as a memorial to her husband, William Belden Reed, an early Literary Union supporter. The Library is constructed of native stone with beautiful marble trim. The interior features a large rotunda, hardwood paneling, two fireplaces and original oak furnishings.
Naomi: Favorite book(s)?
Jeanne: My two favorite fiction authors are Marge Piercy and Lois McMaster Bujold. My two favorite non-fiction authors are Scott Rosenberg and Malcolm Gladwell. I read constantly, on paper, my Kobo eReader and via audio book.
Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries?
Jeanne: Is ‘free books’ too easy an answer? If so, I will add in the supportive people and extensive digital resources. And the smell of books – sad but true!
Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Jeanne: Connect with like minded colleagues around the world and build a ‘brand’. I know that sounds a little hokey, but the more you have a public profile people can wrap their heads around, the easier it will be to network and convince people you are the right person for the job.
There are a lot of ways to accomplish this these days including:
– following and interacting with others on Twitter
– attending gatherings and meeting new people. A few ideas: happy hour of a local group, a THATcamp, tours of other institutions near you and local or international conferences
– write a blog and interact with other bloggers. I wrote an entire case study on how writing a blog can be a career development activity: http://interactivearchivist.archivists.org/case-studies/spellbound-blog/
Jeanne started her career working with databases and developing custom software for Oracle. Fifteen years later she found a position at Discovery Communications and took advantage of their education reimbursement program to pursue her Masters in Library Science at the University of Maryland, choosing the Archives, Records & Information Management concentration. She started writing Spellbound Blog in the summer of 2006 as an outlet for her desire to follow certain ideas further than her coursework allowed. She was pleasantly surprised to find a burgeoning archives blogging community and credits her blog for much of her success in shifting careers from database software developer to electronic records archivist.