Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Christmas Crafting 2013

This blog has been rather neglected in the last six months. In fact it has been very neglected. I can't say much in my defence, except, you know, life. Which given where I was last year is rather nice really. 

I do have a nice serious work related post in the making, which I hope I will be able to post over Christmas. However, being in the festive mood and having for the first time done some serious crafting for Christmas I thought I would share the fruits of my labour. 

Preparation started back in the Autumn when I was out gathering Sloes. I've never lived anywhere where sloes were in plentiful supply so the idea of making Sloe Gin was too tempting to put aside. With the gift of an unwanted bottle of whiskey I also made sloe whiskey, with both types having just been decanted and bottled up into medicine style Doric bottles.

At a similar time I also gathered blackberries and was given a plentiful supply of quinces and apples which enabled me to have a go at jelly and jam making for the first time. Armed with only basic equipment I have managed to make a number of mainly successful batches including a lovely blackberry jam I am currently enjoying and some quince, apple and sage jelly which goes beautifully with pork. I would say, after tasting both types, although membrillo may be tempting should you manage to get hold of some quinces I much prefer the clear, rose like quince jelly I made this year. 

Additions of some hand printed labels and some purpose bought jars and bottles and the jellies, jams and gin will hopefully make some well received presents. 


I also hand printed many of my Christmas cards this year, going for a postcard like card rather than a traditional folded ones. I especially liked my turkey/robin stamp. 


Through twitter I had got involved in a Christmas craft swap, which saw me calling on my book bi dining skills. My first task was to make 6 mini books in different colours as tree decorations. I wanted to ensure they were true miniature books, hand stitching the pages just as I would a bigger notebook. I printed the cover with four letter Christmassy words and I was very pleased with the result. The one below was a prototype, in the end I didn't silver the edges of the ones I swapped. 


My other swap was a more standard notebook during which I used a technique of using a double layer of boards for the covers to create a recess into which material or ribbon can be inserted. On this one I inserted a strip of printed cotton I had made a few months earlier. This technique does make for a much thicker cover which it means it works best when the notebook is fairly bulky itself. 


My second to last bit of crafting was for one of those life things that has rather distracted me over the last few months, the boy. Although I've bought him a normal present I wanted to make him something as well. Always difficult crafting for a man, the boy is even more difficult than normal. However I settled in the idea of a diary, using one I had purchase and removed from its original binding. Using the double board method again, this time with some leather I had purchased from Dents factory shop, I think the result is fairly satisfying. Whether he will use it is a different matter, although if he does I hope it will be robust enough to survive the outdoors over the coming year. 


Finally I had a go at some felt decorations. Not totally successful, although more fun than a lot of my other work. I may end up using these as gift tags for the kids presents as I'm not sure anyone would really want them on their tree. I quite like the cheeky gingerbread man though, even if he does need a scarf to keep him warm. 


If your interested these are the recipes / methods I used for my edible crafting. I don't have a sugar thermometer so I used the method of testing the jam on cold plates from the freezer to see if it wrinkles. This worked fine for me although I'm sure a proper jam thermometer would be more reliable.




Monday, 22 July 2013

The End of a Chapter

It's been a few weeks since I finished my book binding course but between conferences and holidays I've not chance to write my intended final blog post on the subject. 

I think I enjoyed the final weeks of the course the most because it was an opportunity to learn what I would call craft based bindings - non traditional bindings often used for artists books. While the majority of the class where attempting to rebind and repair antique books a couple of us got to learn about coptic and secret binding as well as a complicated and as I discovered, hard to duplicate, technique that results in a woven effect that uses the cover itself as the tapes for the signatures. 

Both the coptic and the woven cover leaves the stitching exposed so it's a nice technique to use if you want to use coloured thread and in the case of coptic, if you want to vary the number of horizontal 'stitch lines' across the spine. 

As with most binding, although the coptic looks like it is sewn across all the signatures at once, the sewing actually goes up and down the signatures, linking into the previous ones in order to form the herringbone type stitch across the spine. It is important to remember to start from the inside of the first signature and to sew the first signature directly to the prepared boards, which should have been skewered before starting. 



The woven cover is more complicated and is best done with thin card, thicker textured paper or leather. As I found it is also best if you have two contrasting colours. 




The template needs to be three times the size of your signatures, plus the width of your spine, plus any overlap you want round the edge. As a rough idea the two outer thirds will make up the bulk of your covers while the middle third will form the spine and the strips which will be woven through the other two thirds.  The template should be attached to your cover material and cut out with a knife. The signatures are then sewn using straight binding and one of the sets of strips as the binding tapes before the second side is woven in and if necessary glued and trimmed at the edges. The nice thing about this type of cover is that you can vary the weaving to create different patterns or effects depending on the number and size of the strips you create. For example you could create a template that would allow only a couple of squares of the strips to show through. 

The final type of binding we did was secret Belgium binding, a technique that disguises how the signatures are attached to the cover. As with coptic you must prepare your boards first, covering them on both sides. As with traditional binding you also create a spine piece and this is covered separately. The front and back pieces of the spine need to be pierced and then sewn together starting from the inside and done in such a way that the spine piece is woven between the stitches. It is important for the next stage that you have an even number of holes arranged in paris. Essentially you go back and forth across the spine trapping it between the thread. 



Once your cover is complete you can stitch in the signatures, using the pairs of thread on the inside of the spine as your tapes. This becomes progressively more difficult as there will be less and less give in the threads. It helps to keep the signatures as near vertical as possible and to artificially press them down while you are stitching. The finished book will be fairly loose but makes a nice artists book, the technique goes particularly well with torn rather than trimmed edges. 

Unfortunately due to hockey commitments I won't be returning to Bath College for another term although I would very much like to as I still have techniques to perfect and ideas to try out. I would recommend the course to anyone interested in bookbinding, it was enjoyable, taught well  and I thought good value for money. I'm hoping it will be running next summer when hockey has finished and I can return for another term. 

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Biking Sussex Summer 2013

So I've been back in Bath a week now and I thought I better get round to posting about the bike trip while it is still a pleasant memory, rather than a distant one. So today I totted up my milage, plotted the routes on Map My Run and generally brought the trip to a close. 

During the trip I used the hashtag #jennysbiking so I could easily identify the trip on my timeline. I had such a good time and I'm so proud of covering the distances I did. I'm already thinking of covering more of the South Coast route next year. 

3/7/2013: Day 1: Camber, Lydd and Romney Marsh, briefly passing into Kent for a cream tea in Appldore. 72.5km, 49m climb. 

http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/245760731



4/7/2013: Day 2: Rye, Hastings, Bexhill, Norman's Bay and Eastbourne. 50.5km, 231m climb

http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/245762787



5/7/2013: Day 3: Brighton, Newhaven, Seaford, a foggy Seven Sisters, Alfriston, Southease. 46.6km, 346m climb. 

http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/245765607



6/7/2013: Day 4: Southease to Worthing, via South Downs Way and South Downs Link. 49.3km, 522m climb.

http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/245767905



7/7/2013: Day 5: Worthing to Brighton and then a complicated route to Bath thanks to a cancelled train. 16.3km, 26m clim. 

http://www.mapmyrun.com/routes/view/245770109

Finally here is a picture of one of my favorite views from the trip, Devil's Dyke looking north from The South Downs Way. It sums up some of the lovely countryside in this area and the wonderful weather I enjoyed all week. 



Monday, 1 July 2013

Blogged: Day 2 Interlend 2013

So I'm not going to dwell on the conference dinner. We ate, we drank, we put the world to rights. Pretty much  like any other library conference you've ever been to. It was good fun with good company, even if I have a sneaking suspicion I may have agreed to let OCLC ring me about Questionpoint. (Only joking Viv!) 

Day 2 started with a tour of Cardiff Central Library, an relatively new building in the heart of the city amongst the shopping center and bars. It's bright design, clear signage and mixed use of space was impressive with the white grand piano especially getting a lot of attention from the group. But for me it was the use of the mezzanine for the children's library that made me realise that this was more than your average library, this was a purpose designed space, created by people who understood how a library works and is used. Tucked away to provide not only a sense of security for parents but also a barrier to the inevitable noise the space is more playground than library. From the curtained story area to the convenient baby change facilities this space is everything a children's library should be, complete with dedicated, enthusiastic staff. Anyone needing a lesson in why paid staff are so important to the success of a service you only have to visit Cardiff Children's library to see a visible representation of the value they add. 

We returned to the conference centre for our first speaker of the day, Graham Cornish, who took us back to basics, asking the question, why we do what we do? It was a timely reminder  as to how far document supply has come since the days when everything had to be delivered physically and even a photocopier was a pipe dream. It was also a reminder as to how libraries had changed,  moving away from "a just in case" policy to a supply on demand ethos. Arising partly through need, most libraries do not have either the resources or space to buy everything nowadays, we are now in a world that supports the idea of "anything, to anyone, anywhere and at any time. In line with this libraries are becoming about access rather than acquisition and as it is exactly this that inter lending and document supply supports. 

Next I had elected to attend Dawn Downes look at Paper vs Processing, a presentation that had arisen from the results of a document supply survey taken across UK libraries the previous year. It had been undertaken as a benchmarking exercise as Dawn attempted to move away from a  admin heavy, paper based solution to a more system based process. Although Dawn had no quick fix answers  what the survey did show is that inter lending continues to be a very process heavy service that even the dedicated ILL systems can't seem to streamline. Even where the paper admin has been removed most organisations are left juggling data between spreadsheets, online forms, LMS's and multiple systems. For me it also highlighted the difference between a large and small institution, not only in regards to scale of the service and the size of the teams involved, but also in terms of the way items are procured with larger organisations much more likely to be operating a 'Net' service. Although this maybe a generalisation a quick poll indicated that larger organisations were also  more likely to be using the BL as a last resort, borrowing from established, normally cheaper,  networks such as Unity or SWIRLS first, where about smaller institutions would often use the BL as a first resort in order to reduce checking times. 


After lunch (and cake) the penultimate talk was from Mark Kluzek who discussed the impact of ebooks and ejournals on ILL and Document Supply. As always when entering the world of eresources, publishers and licenses soon made an appearance and reference was made to yesterday's keynote on the changing face of copyright law. 

In the case of ejournals Mark has found that many licenses permit document supply and are very specific in what is and isn't allowed. So in short you are on fairly safe ground as long as you read the small print! For example a license might specify whether an article needs to be printed off in hard copy or whether an electronic copy is permissible. He also touched on the recent changes to copyright law that will see exceptions, such as fair dealings, overrule at least UK license agreements, making DSS for e-articles a much easier mine field to negotiate. 

However ebooks continue to be a very different matter with most licenses currently out right banning lending. Even should licences, or the law,  allow the process, there is no means to carry out the loan.  Short of physically printing off the chapters there is no physical way of lending a book in it's electronic form, existing as they do  on publisher or aggregator  platforms who have no wish to enable such transactions. 

In some ways I found this talk disappointing. PDA and associated rentals from publishers or aggregators  have the capcity to impact greatly on ILL, or at least I believe so. It is something I have heard discussed at length at ebook conferences over the last year yet here it was hardly touched upon. I'll admit it is a step away from traditional ILL but  I was left disappointed that this subjected wasn't more fully explored. 

I couldn't help but feel that more work needs to be done to bring the areas of procurement and ILL together  to address the problem jointly. I was especially disappointed that the group talked about the idea of renting books from each other in order to secure an income for the publishers, an idea that ignores the current rental opportunities already offered by many ebook publishers and shows a lack of understanding as to where ebook supply is heading.  The reality is that ebook models increasingly bypass the traditional means of discovery, such as a bookstore or library, and allow the publishers to market their books direct to individuals through their own platforms. We cannot be blind to this, either in procurement or ILL and we certainly cannot continue to model digital lending after the traditional physical lending systems we have in place. 

Finally for the day we have David Ball and 'Open Access - A Disruptive Technology. If I'm totally honest OA isn't really my thing and although I appreciated the slant David took, looking at the idea that OA has developed as a 'good enough' technology, I failed to really engage with this presentation. Luckily for anyone interested his entire presentation is going to be available on the FIL website sometime in the future and I will post a link to this and the other presentations once they are up. In the mean time here is a link to a Storify of the second day : sfy.co/eMGY

Interlend has been a bit of an eye opener for me, not just because I have learnt so much but because I have realised that the problems I am facing are by no means unique. It is too easy in the day to day process of running a service to forget that there are hundreds of similar services to your own, all facing the same problems. If nothing else Interlend 2013 has put my mind at ease that I actually know more about ILL than I think and that I have the means, and network, to make progress if only I can give the subject some time. 





Thursday, 27 June 2013

Blogged: Day 1 Interlend 2013

I'm going to make a small confession. I don't know much about interlending. In fact, prior to starting my new job four months ago, I had never really had much to do with inter library loans or document supply at all. So I've been more than a little apprehensive about this conference and the fact that I would eventually have to write up a piece for it. 

For a complete novice like myself the choice of the Keynote speaker, the accepted UK authority on copyright in the UK, Professor Charles Oppenheim, seemed a bit left field. But actually, given a moment to think about the bigger picture, and in the context of the new legislation and licensing, there was no better person to open a conference looking at "Back to Basics" in Inter lending. Everything we do as ILL and DS providers is governed by copyright, publisher contracts and licenses and given the imminent overhaul of these areas  it was only right that we entered into the day having covered the basics of the future environment we'll be operating in. 

Charles was followed by Kate Ebdon and Samantha Tillett from the British Library who were here to talk about the changes afoot at The British Library. I tweeted much of this session so you can find the Storify here: http://sfy.co/t9jt 

Of most interest (even though the connection was a little slow) was the demonstration of the British Library Document Supply System, launched recently and not something my university is currently using. I was interested to hear about it's potential to devolve admin direct to users although discussion during lunch still raised questions about whether it would actually result in more work and how it would integrate with LMS's. 


After lunch (of which the mini cakes were a highlight) we moved onto the afternoon breakout sessions. 

I had chosen to attend Carol Giles' session on the University of Exeter ILL service. I think many people attending were expecting something slightly more revolutionary as while the online system they had created in house was impressive I don't think it was the all singing, all dancing, fully integrated payment, request, renewal and monitoring system that many people were hoping to see. Certainly I couldn't help but draw parallels to our own Google form that we introduced last year. What it did highlight is how paper based and admin intensive much ILL and DS work is and how often the barriers to creating a seamless service exist not with just external services, such as the BL, but also in house with the availability (or lack of) internal support from IT.

Next up was James Shaw from Bodleian Libraries talking about their Scan and Deliver service. This isn't a ILL service but a way of making items (within fair use copyright policy) from their remote store available to their users within 24 hrs. I'm going to blog about this more as the system seems impressive and has many applications to ILL and DS. However I think the thing that struck me most was it's integration into their current LMS and the seamless online service offered to the users, something we are familiar with in retail options such as Amazon but which we so often fail to see in library online services. 

The day was brought to a close with an update from Elisabeth Robinson from OCLC  talking about the development of Bookmark Your Library  and Worldshare before the FIL committee took questions from the floor. Surprise, surprise many of these focused around the new CLA license which will be coming into force this summer and which is still something of an unknown. 

Finally, before I give myself ten minutes to get ready for the conference dinner, here are today's tweets from Storify:

http://sfy.co/gN5J







Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Catching up with the Books.

My book binding course has been continuing but I haven’t written a post for a while. This is a lot to do with the fact I have been extremely busy, not just in work but doing fun things like attending the Doughnut Day at the American Museum and biking to Bath to see a friends MA Print show. However I have still been attending and making books.

During one of the missed weeks we learnt how to make cases for our books. The important point from this lesson was to make each box to fit an individual book, to ensure your joints are square and to sand your edges before covering the box to ensure a clean finish. While I liked the boxes and the approach to making them, with each side made out of an individual bit of card (my instinct would have been to make it out a strip) I’m not sure how much I’ll use it.

The following week was much more interesting for me as we moved onto craft books, in this case a travel journal made out of soft kid leather. The stitching shows through the leather with it starting from inside the signatures rather than the outside. It is important to use a template to pierce your holes in the kid first as it is quite tough and ensure enough of an overlap for the kid to wrap around. Use a leather punch to cut the holes that hold the thong that is used to close the journal. 



This week we looked at copic binding, a technique I had seen mentioned in some of the bookbinding books I had been browsing. This also leaves the stitching exposed at the spine with the signatures sewn directly to the covering boards. This method allows you to greater variety in your stitching but for a good finish means that you have to get the tension right.

Over the last few weeks I have also been making some presents for friends. I’ve listed these below with a brief description of how they were made.
Redcar Map Book: French bound square backed book with original Ordnance Survey maps covering the Redcar and Cleveland region. Buckram cover. 


A6 notebook with multicoloured signatures, wallpaper sample paper cover and buckram spine, French bound.

Square concertina book containing lyrics to first verse of ‘Little Boxes” Cover made from rubber stamp printed cloth and red embroidary thread.



Square albums with mixture of card and paper signatures. French bound with mixed material covers including buttons and stitching. Both intended as baby albums. (Second image to follow)


Thin notebook with double thickness paper covered boards, stab bound with embroidery thread. 

A5 french bound notebook will wallpaper sample paper and stitched buckram cover.


Saturday, 1 June 2013

Prints for Inspiration - American Museum

I found these prints in at the American Museum in Bath. They are modern takes on traditional North American art and were by far my favorite aspect of the museum. 

As only non flash photography is allowed and I only had my camera phone on me they were difficult to capture. However I wanted to post them as inspiration to some future prints I'm thinking of making. The limited colours used in blocks lends itself to the rubber stamps I've been making and I think this style would translate well in the format








Prints aside the America Museum is worth a visit. They have some lovely period rooms and a selection of quilts that is incredible. There are also a few activities for kids and a very interesting and well done timeline of American History. Make sure you allow yourself plenty of time as the house and grounds are large - we ran out of time to visit the gardens which have a lovely outlook over the Wiltshire Countryside

Not Quite Making It.

Last week I attended an interview for The Traveling Librarian Bursary awarded jointly by CILIP and The English Speaking Union. I found out this week that I had missed out after being shortlisted to the last three. I received some very positive feedback along with the suggestion I consider reapplying next year. 


Anyone who has applied for this type of funding knows you invest a lot in the application and I was gutted to get so close and fall at the last hurdle. For me, given the year I have had, it was just one to many 'not quite good enough' and so at this point I feel I will probably not resubmit. However I put a lot of work into the proposal and think people might find it of interest so I decided to post an edited version here. 

I want to make something clear first. I do not believe that 3D printing is the savior of public libraries, either here or in the US. Neither do I think that libraries should start rushing out and buying 3D technology. I wrote this proposal because it is an area I am genuinely interested in and I believed (still believe) that the outcomes would be of interest across a number of different sectors. Additionally the Maker movement is alive and strong in the UK, even if most libraries have yet to embrace it in the way the US has. Most importantly I wanted to emphasise that Maker Spaces are so much more than a 3D printer, a fact that is often over looked in the hype generated by the media around 3D guns and printing.



Proposal for Travelling Librarian Award 2013 : Jennifer Foster


Background and Context:


Increasingly libraries across all sectors are moving away from traditional uses of space. They are stepping away from coffee mornings and embracing gaming events and social enterprise. This isn’t a new development, libraries have always evolved to meet the needs of their communities. However in America there is a new evolution that is not just offering a new service but is challenging what the library is for and how the very building is used. It  is bringing  mess, noise and disruption into the very heart of the book stacks.

This evolution is the Makerspace, or Fab Lab, or Hack Space. The concept is not unique to libraries but certainly library locations are becoming a popular location for the phenomena. They have perhaps become best known for their use of 3D technology although the roots of the service often have more humble beginnings, with tools more suitable for bike repair than laser scanning.

“The maker movement in libraries is about teaching our patrons to think for themselves, to think creatively, and to look for do-it-yourself solutions before running off to the store. In short, a Makerspace is a place where people come together to create with technology.”

David Lankes, in his blog post, Beyond the Bullet Points: Missing the Point and 3D Printing, builds on this and champions the idea of library collections as tools for idea creation and knowledge generation. His blog emphasises that Makerspaces are not just about finding a use for an unused floor or buying a new bit of kit that allows patrons to make 3D copies like a Xerox. Makerspaces in libraries are about sharing resources and knowledge to create something new and tangible, be that an object, or a skill that will stay with someone and then ideally, be shared again. They teach problem solving skills and most importantly encouraging both adults and children to learn through creativity.

The Problem:

At this time library Makerspaces are not a new concept, they are a well-established offer within the American public library sector. However in the UK they are still almost of unheard of. Despite a well-established British Maker movement Makerspace type gatherings in libraries have so far been limited to one off events, such as the 2012 Gateshead E-Day or the month long program of Saturday events held at Longsight Library by Manchester Girl Geeks. Although heralded as successes we are yet to see, as far as my research allows, a permanent Makerspace or a serious exploration into provision of 3D printing and technology in a UK public library.

Aims and Objectives:

Should I be awarded this funding I would aim to visit a number of locations with a Makerspace offer within mainland United States. The table below shows a number of potential location. While I would expect a number of these to have a ‘high tech’ offer, ie with 3D printing and scanning facilities, I would also aim to visit low tech Makerspaces and those that offer services to specific demographics, e.g. teenagers. I would also aim to visit at least one academic Makerspace, preferably one that allows use by the public, in order to explore the degree that universities might lead on making this technology available to the public.

My overall objective is to ask whether UK public libraries have the scope to support Makerspaces in the same way that they are supported by libraries in America and explore how this has been achieved elsewhere. Second to this, because a Makerspace does not necessarily involve a 3D printer, I would ask whether 3D technology is one that we would want to offer in our public libraries and how else UK libraries might foster and support the Maker movement.

(I also had a number of secondary objectives that encompassed the logistics of setting up a Maker Space, their connection to business and IP services and the role of volunteers and the community.)

Potential Institutes and Organisations.

Name
Location
Type
Connecticut
Public
Tennessee
Public
New York State
Public
Detroit
Public
Detroit
Public, teenager
Michigan
University
New Jersey
Community Group – non library specific
New York
Community Group – non library specific

So, that's it. I may change my mind and reapply next year but I can't help but think that in 18 months the subject will have moved on to such an extent that my proposal here will no longer be relevant. 

However I would always encourage everyone to apply for this, and any other bursaries, that you see. Missing out is hard but no more so than failing a test or job interview. You never know what will happen until you try and over the past few years I've benefited from a number of successful bursary applications.  

Monday, 27 May 2013

CILIP Ebooks 2013

On Thursday I attended the second CILIP Ebook Briefing. I came away with mixed feelings about the event, there was a bit too much of stating the bloody obvious, but generally it was a good day. 

As I'm in the middle of a spate of events I realised I will struggle to blog about the day for a while so I thought I'd at least Storify my many, many tweets and find the links to the videos and presentations for the day. So here you go. 

Ebooks 2013 on Storify

39 Steps from The Story Mechanics

M25 Consortium PDA Video

Presentation list on the CILIP website

Hopefully more to follow at a later date!



Saturday, 18 May 2013

Spring Reflections

Since moving to Bath my blog has taken a decidedly non-professional turn. There are a few reasons for this, not least because I am still getting to grips with a new job and city. 

My job itself is still developing and I am still learning about the university and my team. I often joke to people that my job is the bins and bogs of the library but that really does it a disservice. Yes, it is very much focused on front line and customer services and yes I have spent quite a bit of timing discussing various aspects of toilets over the last few weeks. But I'm also involved in an exciting development of a learning commons space in our new build and I'm introducing a chat service that will be used across the service. I'm also pleased that my previous experience working with LMS's and websites is being used, even if Symphony is proving a vastly frustrating experience! Most of all I smile everyday when I turn into the (1/2 mile) drive up to the campus and while our listed buildings may offer me some logistical problems it means I get to work in a beautiful place. 

Work aside my Chartership progress stalled earlier this year after I lost contact with my mentor. Luckily Twitter came to the rescue and I'm hoping to have feedback on my completed portfolio in the next month or so. Once it has been submitted I'm going to complete the new CILIP PKSB and attempt to use it to move forward with a view to revalidation and volunteering as a Chartership Mentor. I enjoyed the chartership process so much I want to make sure I continue to be proactive in my CPD and continue to learn and develop. 


However just because I've not been blogging about it doesn't mean I've not been active. This week I made the trip to London (thanks to sponsored travel from ARLG SW) for the first ARLG members day at Regents University. The day, aptly enough after the recent merge of groups, was focused on partnerships and it was interesting to hear from a variety of organisations including Goldsmiths, Dundee College and The Hive. I'm going to do a full report for the ARLG SW newsletter but I did leave with one overwhelming thought which didn't sit entirely comfortably. With the exception of The Hive, where two partners work on a equal footing, many of the stories I heard were less about partnership and more about what the library can do for their wider organisations. What were presented as partnerships was more the library adapting to changing needs and marketing their strengths and benefits. This isn't to criticise, it was obvious that this is needed, that we need to change, to offer services that fall out of our traditional remit and to talk to  people outside of our normal library bubble. But a partnership should be two way, each party should bring something to the table and leave with their own benefits, having contributed to others. It is this aspect that I didn't see so much of and which I worry is all to often a common story on libraries. 

I'm also peripherally involved in the organisation of the next SW Library Camp and in addition will be attending a number of mentoring / coaching type training events in June with a view to becoming a CILIP mentor once I have completed Chartership. I have discovered that I love this aspect of management and development which means I was especially proud to see one of my former team appear in the last edition of Update writing about her experiences using Twitter. (May 2013, Article by Emma Suffield) I'm also attending Interlend 2013 thanks to a sponsored place, an event at which I will have a lot to learn being a relative novice when it comes to inter library loans and document supply. 

Most exciting for myself I'm attending the CILIP Ebook briefing next week, an event I regretted missing last time and which, for the first time, I will be entirely self funding. I just hope it proves to be worth the money although as I'm also combining it with a very exciting interview on Friday the trip will at least have a dual purpose. 

I will finish by saying that I could have been more proactive about writing up my experiences over the last few months and so I'm going to commit to using my Learning Logs on a more regular basis. The entire last two months has been one big learning journey and one I should have recorded better. Lessons learnt and all of that!