To-Be-Published... Again!

Swift on the heels of December's announcement that Suzanne, Annie, and I will be publishing a chapter in a book about academic library outreach, I got the new this morning that my abstract has been accepted for the upcoming book, 9/11 in Popular Culture. My essay will be titled, "Drawing on Tragedy: 9/11 in Comics and Graphic Novels." I’m looking at an issue of Spiderman, the comic version of the 9/11 Commission Report (so it’s kind-of a government document), and a compilation of artist responses to 9/11.

I figure the really interesting bit will be that this essay/chapter will tie together my backgrounds in literature, art history, and govdocs all in one.

And, um, since I just posted a lot, that’s it for now.

The Doctoral Experience Thus Far

After two weeks of classes having begun, I finally attended my first F2F (face-to-face) class session for the Higher Education PhD program. I'm currently enrolled in EPSY 6020: Research Methods in Education (which is a fancy name for "basic quantitative/qualitative statistical research;" this couse is online), EDHE 6510: History of Higher Education (online with 4 F2F meetings), and EDHE 6780: Educational Resources (meets Monday evenings). Last night, I went to 6780 and enjoyed a lively discussion about endowments, grants, and the ethics of fund-raising. We had some particularly interesting discussion regarding the place of athletics and alumni in university fundraising--I can tell I'm really going to enjoy this class.

I've been enjoying the reading for 6510, but to be honest there hasn't been much yet. It looks like the readings and the assignments get heavier at the end of the year, which to be honest is fine with me. I'm trying to get our house on the market by mid-March, so I'm occupied with cleaning, boxing things for storage, and painting. I anticipate that around the end of February, I'm going to hit a huge clash between fulltime librarian-ing, fulltime doctoral student-ing, and readying our house to look its best. Not to mention that whole husband/family/friends side of life... yeah. Good thing I'm enjoying my classes so much at the moment!

I keep desperately seeking new ways to carve out blocks of time for myself. To be honest, my two-hour total commute each day is a kind of welcome break from all these tasks, but at the same time, I keep furiously thinking that I'd rather be spending the time working on homework or something else useful. If only I could get someone, for free, to record themselves reading my textbooks, and then I could play that in the car during my commute... Any other suggestions? I used to think I ought to borrow language-learning CDs from the public library, but that ends up being an additional source of information, without actually helping my work/school/home-responsibilities bind. At least music relaxes me, and NPR feeds me the news.

I certainly welcome any further ideas on better uses for my commute. :)

Abilene--Literally a Whirlwind Trip!

Yesterday, I woke up at 5am to leave my house at 6am, in order to meet Suzanne in Denton. We drove to Abilene and due to some ferocious Fort Worth traffic, didn't make it to HSU's Richardson Library until 11am. We had a great--though brief--chat with my friend Ellen Simmons, who is the govdocs librarian there. This is the second library visit I've made with Suzanne--we went to see David Rankin in Commerce last semester, and Suzanne went to visit with Tom Lindsey at UTA earlier this month (sans myself). It's oddly helpful to walk through other libraries' govdocs collections--by comparing them with ours, it's somehow giving me a more complete view of depository collections and what the core items are in a depository collection.

Ellen treated us to a fantastic lunch at the Cypress Street Cafe, an Abilene legend. Then I dropped off a Wii Guitar Hero guitar with my friend Jared on our way out of town--geeky errands, you know--and after just 3.5 hours in Abilene, we were on our way back out of town! (We had to leave so abruptly because I had a class that evening, and Suzanne had to drive to Tulsa that night.)

But as for “whirlwind,” it wasn’t just that we spent less time in Abilene than it takes to drive there… one-way… “whirlwind” signifies the fantastically enthusiastic/crazy wind that was going on. Yes, windy even by Abilene-ian standards, which is a bit terrifying. (This morning it was even worse in Denton: winds at 56 mph+ and grassfires that made the whole city smoky.)

It was nice to see my alma mater, though, for however brief a time.


On My Way...

...I'll shortly be departing for the DFW airport, Philadelphia, and ALA Midwinter. I'll try to send some updates soon--this past week was a hectic mash of dealing with post-holiday work and preparing for ALA, but there is news to be had.

And here's the first bit: the Texas Library Association has used several of my photos of the Transforming Texas Libraries Summit for their cover image for this month's edition of the Texas Library Journal! Woohoo!

The real cherry on top was my husband's laughter when he saw that, as he predicted, they used my hotel-bathroom-mirror self-portrait for my photo credit. Ah, well. That's what I get for making myself so public on Flickr and continuously photographing myself in ridiculous situations.

A big thanks to my pal Kristen for first breaking the news, to Gayla for bringing a copy to show me (while mine was on its way), and to TLA for using my images. Won't this be a fun addition to my portfolio?