Living in the Midwest, I normally find myself grabbing a new book to read on the plane and flying to ALA Conferences, but Chicago is close enough that I can just throw my suitcase into a car — or a library van.
One of the great things about driving to conference is the chance to chat for a more extended time with colleagues you work with (or at least in the same building with) everyday but don’t often make the time to talk with. Today I had the opportunity to share the drive to Chicago with the head of our Young Adults’ Services department and the head of our Reader’s Services department. We talked about a wide variety of topics including:
- Inventorying our library’s collection — whether it’s feasible and how to go about it
- Adult, YA and children’s authors
- Programs and meetings we are looking forward to in Chicago
- Summer Reading (of course!)
- Dystopian novels, hard science fiction, and the difficulty of finding current sci-fi which is not apocalyptic
- The value of communicating with funders when a program is underway as a way to keep them informed AND to thank them
- Differences in learning to decode graphic novels as opposed to traditional novels
- Using 3-D printers in the library
- The explosion of the bunny population in our community and speculation about whether Watership Down is in one librarian’s backyard
It was great! My brain is already whirring with ideas, and it made me think about what a great opportunity we have at the ALA Conference to network, talk, and pick the brains of librarians from all over the country. While the scheduled events are important and valuable, this conference is much more than just meetings and presentations.