So much happened at ALA that I am so exhausted – not just from the amount of time I spent on my feet versus spent sleeping, which was skewed in the wrong way, but also exhausted from the amount of gratitude I feel after a weekend filled with really good people who treated me really well and who are really supportive at a time when I need that.
But I really hate being gross and saccharine, so suffice to say thank you, I am not worthy, you are all amazing, and moving on.
I met lots of people I have known only on the internet, and I’m glad to know that actually they are just as excellent offline, so we hung out a lot. I’m usually pretty good at going to sessions at conferences, but this time I pretty much only went to my own or ones I was helping with, and otherwise I made really, really valuable and rewarding connections with human beings on the exhibit floor, at the hotels, and roaming the halls. I don’t know how I made it through four days without having a hotel room to escape to when the social overload anxiety hit, but it was a whirlwind and I did it and it was worth it.
So I had a pretty amazing weekend. And it’s not even over. I have today off from regular job and don’t have to be to second job until late afternoon, so I get to catch up on television shows, blogging, and reading, because I haven’t done a lot of that lately. Also, calming down and taking it easy is good for you, I hear, so this is an excellent opportunity to, like, work hard in a relaxing way.
I went to KidLitCon and presented twice, but even better, I went to a conference that wasn’t for librarians and got to meet other likeminded people who come from a different space than I am coming from these days. That’s not to say there were no librarians – go ahead, just try to plan a book-related event and have us not be there – but it wasn’t for librarians, it was for people who blog about kidlit, and sometimes librarians do that. It was also a very small con – there were maybe 35 of us, which means I think at some point I spoke to every person there. And we were all engaged in the same cause – diversity in kidlit and YA.
Also, I think, at least as far as ratios go, it was the conference with the highest percentage of people of color attending, which was refreshing. I am not a person who remembers to take photos, which I generally don’t care about, but it was kind of too bad, because I am a person who appreciates the existence of photos in service of memory-keeping, but I tend to remember things anyway if they matter, so I think I’m okay.
I got some good stuff out of this conference, in addition to new Twitter and Facebook friends and more blogs to read. Continue reading →
I really wanted to be able to write today about how this past week was completely and utterly excellent. Except that I live in Boston, so first someone bombed the longest-running marathon in the country (world?), and then I had to sit inside all day Friday because my neighborhood was on lockdown for being close to Watertown, and then the whole city was. Even though I know no one who was affected directly by the bombing, and even though I wasn’t in all that much danger on Friday, it was still extremely stressful. I didn’t actually feel like I was stressed, but then when I realized how I couldn’t stop going to the bathroom because of my stomachaches and how I couldn’t read a single page of a book because I couldn’t focus, literally with my eyes and figuratively with my attention, so apparently I was quite agitated.
I in no way want to say that I was in as bad a position as other people, like my friend who lives right in Watertown or like the countless people injured or grieving. But in my own little world, it was a tough Monday and a tough Friday.
I find that really unfair for the obvious reasons, since no one should have to be grieving right now, and also no one should have to feel grateful to be alive right now. Alive is the default, and nobody should have to spend their thoughts mentally thanking someone for only partially ruining their lives. That’s awful, and I am sorry for everyone who was at the marathon or who knew someone there. But I also find it unfair, because I had planned a really great week, and in many ways, it still was, and now I have to feel kind of guilty about that. Continue reading →