My interview with success story, Rebecca
Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Rebecca: I either found this one on INALJ or the Minnesota Library Jobline. I’ve been looking since I graduated, and this one finally came through and I could not be more excited.
Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Rebecca: I spent a ton of time at the National Library in Dublin, Ireland doing research for a post-colonial literature class I was in at the time. Their reading room is beautiful, and they have so many treasures hidden in their stacks. I love research, and the nostalgia of filling out carbon-copy slips and turning them into the desk and waiting for material to be brought down was pretty spectacular. Lots of fun, and a way to get involved with an overseas library that not that many get a chance to do if they’re just vacationing.
Naomi: Favorite book?
Rebecca: Oh, this is the hardest question ever! I have one book that I always re-read every year: The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper (should have won a Newbery!) The book that I just read that shot to the top of the list is Speaker for the Dead by Orson Scott Card, which continues Enders Game. Fantastic.
Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Rebecca: Since I just got a cataloging job, it should be no surprise that I love good catalgoing, and what a library opac can do at its best. Good cataloging opens up the library to a patron, and will always point the patron to something whether or not the patron spells correctly or really knows what they are looking for. I love good name/subject authority control too.
Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Rebecca: My favorite ‘fun’ blog is Bookshelves of Doom. Serious, issue driven librarian blogs? The Cataloguing Librarian (issues with catalogs and cataloging) and In the Library with the Lead Pipe (articles and essays on various topics, published bi-weekly).
Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Rebecca: My best piece of advice is to take your cover letter seriously. Look through the job posting and use the language they used back at them. They want you to have the ability to empathize and engage successfully with adult learners? “My experience with….has taught me how to empathize and engage with adult learners.” If you’re applying for it, you know how you qualify, but some of the those skills may not be apparent if you don’t spell them out. And don’t get discouraged! It takes time, but you can do it, and you’ll find something that’s a perfect fit.
I am the newly hired cataloging librarian for SELCO in Minnesota. I recieved my undergrad in English Lit. and History from Concordia College Moorhead, and my MLIS from St. Catherine University, St. Paul in May 2011. When I’m not at the library or reading, you can find me (sometimes my husband too!) around Settlers of Catan, Doctor Who, and the stove testing out a new recipe.