GLAM Blog Club – July 2017

Fear was the theme for June GLAM Blog Club

Fear is something everyone experiences, but what I loved about reading everyone’s blogs this month, was the positive attitude about overcoming fears in your lives and work.

I’d rather be afraid of clowns! My fear of networking… by Anne Reddacliff explores the fear of networking at library events, and setting goals to meet three, or maybe five, new people at each function. Anne, like many others, finds these gatherings a bit uncomfortable. Say hi when you see her, break the ice, and give Anne some tips about how to meet fellow librarians. I think meeting three people is a great effort!

I’m afraid, you’re afraid – On fear, anxiety, and imposter syndrome in libraries by Kassi Grace overcomes her fear by publishing her blog about the anxieties and fears associated with: “Being in a profession of very intelligent, learned people who are doing amazing and innovative things can be inspiring and intimidating all at once”.

Fear by Nik McGrath, cardi core and archivist at Museums Victoria shows how Nik fears many things in her personal life; at work her greatest fear is failure. “Fear is a state of mind. I choose to live my life unafraid, honest and true to myself and those I love and respect. I conquer my fears by pushing myself to try new things, learn from others and face up to my fears. I think the more we share our fears with others, the less our fears have a power over us.”

Becoming a fearless librarian: Finding courage, creativity and community in books, libraries and archives by Clare O’Hanlon , describes the comfort Clare finds in books, the passion she has for making safe spaces for all in libraries, her political and social activism, her role within the LGBTIQA+ communities, and her contribution to the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives as a committee member. Clare’s journey is incredibly inspirational, and it’s an absolute pleasure to see her flourish in her work as a librarian, social activist, and ensuring the rich collections of the Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives are catalogued and preserved for future generations.

Feel the fear…confessions of an almost qualified GLAM student by Sarah Treweek explores how she also fears networking and the imposter feeling in the GLAM profession which, although welcoming, is rather intimidating with the number of impressive people working in our sector. Good luck with your industry placement Sarah, and believe me; many people share your professional anxiety. You will constantly learn on the job, and from your colleagues. We’re fortunate to be part of such a sharing and kind industry, with inspirational colleagues who want to share their knowledge.

Fear and Professionalism by Matthew Burgess, Digital Collections Analyst at SLNSW shares the common fear of imposter syndrome, networking and public speaking, but like the NLS8 message, ‘do something’ and ‘say yes’, Matthew encourages GLAM professionals to give things a go, and to improve through experience.

GLAM Blog Club Fear describes some of the work challenges of Rebecca Lush, a heritage and museum professional. Welcome Rebecca, it’s great to have museums represented in our GLAM Blog Club. Rebecca describes her work curating a medical collection, and a medical condition called vasovagal syncope episodes, which includes fainting, and feeling nauseous. She explains that: ‘It is caused by a whole variety of triggers including fear of pain and/or bodily injury’. Overcoming fears to work with medical collections, which Rebecca has a keen interest in, requires her to think of the items in the collection as items from the past, rather than items that could inflict pain on her today. Rebecca also gives ghost tours at Cockatoo Island, telling some of the horrible historical events that occurred during the 30 years convicts were imprisoned on the island. Overcoming fears at work can be beneficial to our personal lives.

The Fear Factor of library life by Chloe Delaney, Library Information Practice Masters student at QUT, describes how entering the library profession is Chloe’s greatest fear as a student. Feelings shared by fellow students: ‘What if we aren’t good enough? What if we don’t know enough? What will the more experienced librarians think of us?’ On the flip side, fellow students, teachers and mentors, as well as librarians connected with via social media or at ALIA events, inspire and help dull Chloe’s fears.

In Neophobia by Clare Presser, cardi core, Clare describes how she had two job offers, and was afraid of making the wrong choice. In the end, a paid international internship in America was taken. Clare’s point that mentors need to be more upfront with their advice, rather than sitting on the fence, is a very valid point.

Another month of great blogging, thanks to everyone who took part. Please do spread the word about GLAM Blog Club amongst your friends and colleagues.

July GLAM Blog Club Theme is Identity

At our July cardi party at the Immigration Museum, Lauren Ellis will be discussing racism and identity in Australia, so we thought it would be interesting to extend the forum to our online community in our wonderful GLAM Blog Club. So, July’s theme is Identity. What does identity mean to you? The topic is broad, and I hope it is something you can all sink your teeth into.

Don’t forget to tag your blog post “GLAM Blog Club”, tweet a link to it using the hashtag #glamblogclub, and register your blog at (blog registration only available to Australians or Australia-connected GLAMers). As always, we are extremely excited to read your blogs. So spread the word, and make sure all of your GLAM friends and colleagues get blogging!