Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Brian: Similar to others, I followed INALJ, various blogs, organizational job boards, and listservs. I also benefited from my girlfriend and a small network of colleagues forwarding announcements on a weekly basis. My impending position resulted from one of these email forwards. I hadn’t seen this particular opening, as it was slightly outside the geographic range I had been considering. After discussions around broadening the application scope, and knowing it would entail a move, I began writing the cover letter.
Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Brian: The Squirrel Hill branch of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh has been my favorite of the last several years. When I first moved to Pittsburgh for the MLIS program, I spent a lot of time there. Enjoyed the ambience. Enjoyed that it was vibrant and well-used. Enjoyed the architectural layout of patron interaction.
Naomi: Favorite book?
Brian: Kenneth Patchen’s The Journal of Albion Moonlight has enjoyed the top spot for the last decade. Recent reads of which I’m inordinately fond: René Char’s Leaves of Hypnos, Magdalena Tulli’s Dreams and Stones, Enrique Vila-Matas’ Bartleby & Co., Marguerite Young’s Angel in the Forest.
Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/library technology?
Brian: Their continued presence is a communal means of access to a plethora of resources toward any number of needs, which are otherwise unavailable for a great number people in their day-to-day lives.
Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Brian: Past INALJ interviewees have significantly covered this. Anything I could add would be redundant, aside from suggesting that those-in-need also be certain to check for postings in other industries. I applied for a number of local openings within corporate entities that didn’t advertise via traditional libraryland routes. This required some targeted, company-specific searches.
Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Brian: The pursuit of employment is equal parts an emotional and intellectual challenge. Trying to predict what makes any of us an ideal candidate is an arcane and frustrating science. So beyond the well-documented and straightforward advice we should all follow anyway: endurance and fortitude. Channel disappointment into productive introspection and self-revision.
Born in Georgia. Snagged a BA in English from Emory University in 2000. Wandered around the country for a spell. Picked up an MLIS (APRM Specialization) from the University of Pittsburgh in 2010. Concurrently served as an information assistant (Duquesne) and student conservation technician (Pitt). Been working as a copywriter and software tester since, while building a paper skyscraper comprised from libraryland rejection letters. Mid-April, will begin as Web Design and Instruction Librarian at the University of Tennessee’s Lupton Library in Chattanooga. I am as giddy as can be.