Wednesday, October 10, 2018

poet magic in the real world

Yesterday brought some fortuitous news regarding something rather mundane but necessary I'd written a few months back that had to do with a job classification audit (I'm bored out of my mind even typing those words.)  It was a union thing, and there was an appeal process that I penned the department's response to, and we actually got exactly the rating we wanted, even better than we expected, which bodes well for supporting some of the restructuring and title re-imaginings afoot that will hopefully bear fruit as a pay increase.

It got me thinking of how odd it always feels when my writing abilities actually manifest as real life consequences..not that poetry life is not real life, but it rarely does it impact the daily life of jobs and bills and affording groceries (or dresses.).   It's terrible that real world gains only signify financials in my mind, but it's sadly true..I can't pay my rent in poems.  I can't really buy dresses with poems.  My day job is another weird place where my writing abilities are called upon seldomly, and the majority of people haven't a clue that I'm a writer, much less a rather good one.Especially since libraries often have weird power structures that privilege the MLS degreed librarians over "support staff" who really have far more responsibilities for the daily functioning & maintenance of the library.  Especially for me. since I have two graduate degrees, but neither is in library science.

That writing magic has manifested at least a couple times in the past few years, most noticeably the winning ACRL award application, which while I did a lot of compiling existing info, I did do quite a lot of writing in terms of intros and transitions, and organizing and outlining the final product   Our win was likely a combination of various programming efforts, amazing illustrations by a student artist,  and my writing/design/editing skills. But rarely does my experteise have much to do with that other, more practical life.   It's gotten better with all of the other things I do in the library, committee work for A of R and such, but those aren't nested in my more mundane job description duties and what I'm technically being paid for --well, at least YET (see above).   That award pursuit itself was in the works for awhile, at least two other committees (all degreed librarians part of the Ref / Instruction Department) had written previous year's applications, and we were sort of left-fielding it from the Access Department spurred on by all we'd been doing with A of R programming.   Our then-Dean of the Library joked that it took a poet to win the damn thing.   And yes, I would think, poets can do a lot things where others have failed.

(I ended that paragraph with a wish that poets could change the mind of the American people and make real change, but this flashed in my mind, so maybe they can (maybe not a poet, but songsters are sometimes as close as we can get in the American I'll take it..)

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