Friday, July 19, 2013

Back to the Archives

It's been awhile since I last posted, but a lot has happened since I last posted, so I suppose that makes sense. I got a new job, now once again working as a "pure" archivist. It's been quite a few years since that was true, but it feels good to be focusing on archives. Luckily, the intersection between archives, digitization, and metadata is a big one, so I'm still doing what interests me the most.
Richard Pearce-Moses' new blog inspired me, I suppose, to start writing again (although he stole my blog's look-and-feel, so now I have to go change it!). Plus I hope to have lots of things to write about and think over, since the new job is a big one.
My new job involves building an archive from scratch--this university has never had one before, and at the brink of their fortieth anniversary, decided that they really wanted to start caring for their institutional history. So here I am. I'm straddling two realms in this job, both arranging and describing physical papers and objects and also trying to capture and work with born-digital materials and somehow wrangle a coherent whole out of all of it, because their users expect digital delivery even more than most traditional universities. Oh, and also go get collections and materials to fill the archive with. And write policies and procedures. And build a physical space to house all this stuff. And do it all basically alone. It's kind of a daunting task, but I prefer challenging jobs to unchallenging ones.

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"Wicked people never have time for reading. It's one of the reasons for their wickedness." —Lemony Snicket, The Penultimate Peril.