Zoom, Zoom, Zoom – I’m Going Somewhere Better Than the Moon!

Well, my bookshelves are empty so I must be moving.

I am really quite excited to be moving back to Vancouver to take up the reins as the Head of Youth Services at the West Vancouver Memorial Library.  It is a truly amazing place and one I have always had my eye on for employment.  It is tremendously well-supported by the community, known for innovation/general tech awesomeness and has an entire floor and reference desk for the youth department.  It is also a one-branch system, which I think are the best: you can really get to know an entire community, be adventurous in your collection development and pilot new and exciting things without having to get the A-OK from the folks six levels and many buildings away.

I have spent the last year covering for a maternity leave position as the Head of Youth Services at the Port Moody Public Library and absolutely adoring it.  Like a complete lunatic, I cried twice during my final days last week – once at my going away party and once when one of our circ staff presented me with this personalized quilt:

Comparing where I was about a year ago is really quite odd now.  When I finished school in May 2010 with too many graduate degrees (my MLIS and MA in Children’s Literature) I was really wrestling with the thought of trying to make it “out east.”  I have always had a deep obsession with all the amazing children’s literature stuff that happens out in the New York/Bostonish area so I applied for the position of Librarian/Educator at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art.  By some miracle I was shortlisted for the position and had a phone interview where I spent most of the time getting too excited about James Marshall.  As I was waiting to hear back from the Carle for their final decision, I interviewed at Port Moody and was offered the job.

Now I was in a pickle: do I take the Port Moody job, an amazing position that will give me tons of valuable management experience, pays well and is close to home?  Or do I turn it down in the hope that I might get the dream job of a lifetime at the Carle?  I obviously went with the former and withdrew from the Carle competition, but not before shaking my fist at myself and saying “You better have made the right decision, lady!”

I know that I did.  And the last year has been really swell: In addition to leading the youth department at Port Moody, I have sat on two awards juries (BC Book Prize and CCBC’s Best Books for Kids and Teens Committee), continued reviewing for Quill & Quire including two feature reviews, recently started reviewing apps for School Library Journal and had some amazing public speaking opportunities thanks to the Vancouver Children’s Literature Roundtable.  I have also been able to stay within driving distance of the other half of my black little heart, which is always a plus when navigating the world of employment.

Hmmm…I realize that I have used the word “amazing” a lot in this post, but I think I’m going to leave it that way.

So, although you didn’t ask – that’s what’s shakin’ in the life of Shan. Apologies for the self-indulgent post that will likely only be of interest to my mom and some European spammers asking for my bank account information.

5 thoughts on “Zoom, Zoom, Zoom – I’m Going Somewhere Better Than the Moon!”

  1. And of interest to me! This is more than a year’s worth of Twitters and status updates have provided (not that those weren’t hilarious)! I’m so pleased you’ll be returning to Vancouver for a kick-ass job and I really hope we can visit soon before we end up at the same seniors’ centre.


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