LwL Episode 12: Jo Wood

In Episode 12 of the Librarians with Lives podcast I chat to…ah, no. This week the tables are turned and I’m interviewed by Helen Berry, star of Episode 1 of LwL.

I originally planned to be the relatively anonymous interviewer; keen listeners will have noticed that I don’t introduce myself by name in the podcast. As I recorded the various episodes of LwL I was so impressed by everyone’s honesty that it felt dishonest of me not to offer something of myself. Arguably I’ve been doing that throughout with my interruptions and opinions, but no matter.

Here’s my episode. First of all, I don’t name my current employer for protective rather than sinister reasons. You can find out if you want to – it is hardly a secret – but you’re info pros and can do the necessary legwork! I chat about my introduction to libraries [Point of order #1 It was 27 years, not 25. Point of order #2 Mum also did an Open University degree in social sciences AND various City & Guilds and NVQs in computing], the excellent people that have helped me along the way, what it’s like to work in a series of unusual library and information settings, what happens when things go wrong (and when I say wrong, I mean really really wrong), ruining political careers, stand-up comedy, the time I inadvertently screwed over a colleague, my various FUBARs, some enormous highs, the whole ‘I built a library during a recession’ thing, [Point of order #3 I’ve had three full-time assistants – the third is in post now – since 2010, so I don’t actually break my staff!] a fair bit of impassioned ranting,  two almost-workable ideas for school and social work libraries, and several cultural references.

There are a number of things I forgot to mention (there’s a reason for this that I’ll explain after the episode has aired) including: the fact that I haven’t written my Mills & Boon novel set in a Library yet, getting offered a graduate non-library role when I was made redundant from a professional role and being asked if I could cope with it, being on a panel at a conference and realising I was out of my depth, conference discos, getting Library Twitter wrong (2009-2012), meeting my BFF when I was a graduate trainee, and getting REALLY annoyed when I go into my local public library now.

I’m concerned I may kill my own podcast with this episode but fear not! There are some cracking episodes coming up so hold tight. I’m happy to take questions should any arise – just contact me via @libswithlives

Next week’s episode is Part 1 of a 3-parter (parts 2 & 3 will be out on 12th December), starring @LibrarySherpa AKA Tracy Z. Maleeff, the first international guest on the podcast.

Happy listening!

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