Branding – Til the Cows Come Home

This little library lady is great, and she was the first that I came across to truly voice my concerns regarding creating a name for yourself online, or “branding.”

She also recently wrote what I consider to be a bit of a follow up piece about the pros and cons of several common social networks.

As for me, I’m quite happy with the state of all of my individual accounts at the moment. I love this blog and I feel that it does a great job of presenting me in a mostly positive and professional light; my LinkedIn account is all business; my Twitter is all off-the-cuff snark; Google+ is floundering about, unsure of what direction to go in but is pretty clean and sober so far; and my Facebook is locked and loaded with my “true” personality. I use a few other sites as well, but those are the main ones – frankly, the others should probably be shut down sooner rather than later…but I just can’t bare to permanently part with the silly little emo time-capsule that is MySpace.

Running a Google search for any variety of my names so far yields only this blog and my LinkedIn, along with a few quasi-regrettable Youtube videos I participated in during my fauxhemian years in the middle of college when I was dating an angst-ridden and substance-addled but otherwise wonderful filmmaking man-child.

The real issue I have is that there isn’t much about me that is terrible politically incorrect and I don’t really believe in censorship, but I am a worrier and I do over-analyze, and sometimes it’s difficult to distinguish the line between sharing my considerable opinions and being unprofessional. This is especially true since I’m obviously trying to become a librarian, which is a career so steeped in tradition but also in a great transformative process and state of flux where new roles and rules are being developed constantly, and also because I want to work with kids and young adults. I have to be all things at once – quiet, zany, serious, fun, reserved, opinionated, youthful, experienced.

I have a job interview coming up next week, so the last two entries in this blog have started to worry me, naturally – one references prostitution, the other is an airing of my semi-dirty laundry with URI. Obviously, I don’t want my blog to appear unsafe or unsavory for any potential students or patrons, and I really don’t want to seem like a trouble-maker to potential employers. However, the reality is that I’m actually quite proud of the content of each entry – the former is not truly about prostitution and rather a hot topic that greatly affects me, my friends, and students across the country and its fully stocked with links to some great articles, and the latter is a snapshot of the David-and-Goliath battle between myself and a money-sucking institution, and I completely stand behind what I said and how I said it.

Ultimately, I guess I want to blame a lot of this hypersensitivity to censoring myself on (what else) the economic situation and subsequent job market. Poverty has a tendency to silence most people while fostering creativity in others, and while I fully acknowledge that I am not actually living in poverty, I am definitely dancing along its edge and I feel that I am also experiencing both of the aforementioned responses. Case in point, there are no virtually no jobs to speak of and I rarely get even the briefest email response to all the resumes and cover letters I submit, so I rail against the system from time to time, and then when an opportunity does present itself, I feel pressed to censor myself because I don’t want to risk being misunderstood.

Honestly, though, I don’t want to work for a institution that can’t handle personal opinions, especially when they’re as thoughtful and educated as mine. My resume, cover letters, personal and professional references, and examples of my work all speak for part of me – but the more frequently updated portions of this blog reflect the fact that I’m also a person, and a good one at that, and I hope to be hired on the strength of all these components combined.

And also on the strength of my snazzy new fall wardrobe.

Anyway, I’ll leave you with this little Wiki article, somewhat related to this somewhat jumbly entry: You know you’re a school librarian if….

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