Today I’m looking at new borrowing procedures at public libraries. I was at the City Library on Tuesday and found I didn’t need to speak to anyone at all. There were lots of people there but very few staff. The photo is not good so I’ll move onto the next photo.
This photo isn’t too good either but gives you a better idea of the layout. First you put your card in the spot provided so the computer can identify you. Then you lay your books, CDs or whatever out on the pad for the computer to see. Then you press Exit or Finish and it prints out a slip. You don’t need to speak to anyone and except for returns everything is automated. There were two staff members nearby to answer questions and one lady came up to me to ask if she could help me when she saw me taking this photo…I didn’t explain.
Two things I’m not happy about with this new procedure. Jobs, how many people will lose their jobs over this? And this now means that those people who struggle to have even a few words with people now have an excuse not to talk at all. They can remain totally within their own little world and not interact with anyone in the library, before they at least had to say ‘hello’ to the person behind the counter and that little interchange is no longer there.
So, as of today I’ve now been blogging for six years. It’s been an interesting journey and I’ve watched myself acquire various skills, some better than others.
My writing has improved. It’s not super duper fabulous but it’s better than it was. My confidence level about my writing is at an all time high and I’ve found myself much more able to write. The act of forcing myself to write five days a week by a certain time of day means I’ve had to improve and be able to sit and write even when I don’t feel like it. Whether this will translate to being able to write fiction is a point I have yet to find out and I’m not ready for that at this point.
I have ideas and I’ve been writing most of them down so I can’t forget them but whether I’ll actually be able to follow through to produce a competent story is something for the future. What we’re being taught in both English and English Language is blowing my mind and increasing my skills. I’ll find out at the end of the year whether I’ve picked up enough skills to pass but at the very least I’ll have more skills and a greater understanding of English.
I’d like you to share this anniversary with me and I’m giving away a 12 month digital subscription to Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine, available world wide but you’ll need to do one of three things to enter. Everything you need to know is below. Entries are already open and close at midnight on the 27th April 2015.
Edited: Adding in the method of choosing. This time I think I’ll let Rafflecopter do all the randomisation and choose a winner for me.
I’ve mentioned ASIM several times before but to bring you up-to-speed here is a link to one of my articles. If you want to read more on my blog I suggest you put Andromeda into the search engine as putting in ASIM brings up lots of words about Isaac Asimov.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
I know I promised more photos but they may not be forthcoming for a while. There were two official photographers and one of them took over 700 photos, it will take a while for them to process and upload as they check and label each one. Both ladies are in the middle of studies and that has to take precedence so photos will have to wait. I’ll also have to take the time to ask permission to publish them here.
Remember the guy who gave me $20 to go away? He was Matt Falloon with some amazing talents with balloons. I’ve got a couple of his creations here.
So many workshops and things to do. I’ve already mentioned the origami elephants. You could sign up to join the Plastimake workshop, join the Chain Maille workshop, work on your cosplay in the Chaos Costuming room. There were games happening in abundance, Pat ran Werewolf, new games were turning up. I’ve already mentioned the Galah Dinner, the auction and the Dealer’s Room. There was always someone hanging around to talk to. I think I can safely say much fun was had by all.
Wednesday I’m planning a giveaway. It’s the sixth anniversary of this blog and I’m putting together a pack of books for people to choose from. It will be open to Australians only for postage reasons and I’ll have an incredibly hard question for you to answer. Thursday I’m up to W and I’m considering writing about Jack Wodhams but that may change and hopefully I’ll have more photos for Friday.
I left home at stupid o’clock (not really, it only felt like it. I beat the peak hour traffic) to drive west in order to drive east. That is such a strange thing but the way Melbourne is organised that is what one has to do, the fact that I was picking up my driving partner in crime in the west is only partly relevant. We had a really good trip, Deb is good company and the 12 hour drive felt a lot shorter. I’d made the mistake of organising a dinner with my book blogger friends that evening, I was an hour and a half late! That’s a mistake I’ll never make again, next time I’ll get the timing right. Possibly not helped by picking up another loquacious friend in Canberra, it’s only a slight detour.
Enough of the driving and onto the Con! What an awesome time I had. My Facebook is jumping with my new friends and will be more so when all the photos are uploaded so I can start sharing them. I was kept incredibly busy, I had to change costumes so many times I was worried I’d get the wrong one.
Saturday was the most challenging as I was in the XXXX Factor as both an assassin and a thief (thank goodness I was able to keep the one costume as my two lines came one after another), but that was after being in the warm up act as a dwarf (I threw my ‘chainmail’ over my assassin’s costume and picked up my axe, it was such a big change). Later in the day I had to change for the Galah Dinner, I went as Sybil with a most delightful dress made by someone else and a crinoline (hoop skirt) underneath. I only wore that for an hour or so, it’s impossible to dance in it as the dress was made for someone taller and I had to pick it up in both hands in order to walk without treading on it, I somehow managed to eat my meal with spilling a drop and ran off to change into something more suitable for the entertainment before dancing till I dropped.
The Opening Ceremony had everyone in tears. The Committee had the unenviable task of providing a time and place for people to grieve and they did a beautiful job. During Nullus Anxietas III in Sydney the Committee presented Terry Pratchett with a hat which he rarely took off, Rob Wilkins, his PA and righthand man, brought it back to Australia to present to Australian Discworld and it will now be presented to each Australian Discworld Convention in turn. It sat on stage on a number of occasions and everyone wept when it came out the first time.
Stuff I did
Elephants, I made elephants. So many panels and activities led to things happening later. One activity was making Origami Elephants. We were trying to make 1000 of them but only managed 100 in the first session, and another 100 or so later on. The lady running this session had people making them while they were waiting in signing queues. I was keeping this queue in line with my squeaky sausage inna bun toy and trying to sell them my Dibbler stuff at the same time…I can’t think why they laughed so much. I can’t find a photo of my Dibbler tray to post for your edification. Just for the record, people were buying my Dibbler sausages inna bun and my named meat pies, all money went to the auction fund which raised $8,888 for the Orangutan Foundation and the Indigenous Literary Fund. Someone even gave me money to go away!
Anyway, that’s enough for today. I’ll put up some photos on Friday and by Monday I’ll have pinched some photos of me from other people to show you. Some people took 100s of photos and will need time to upload them.
If you’re reading this…no, I’m sure I’m ok you lot read too much. Sheesh! Get out and get something called life for a bit and get your head out of that book!
All this means is that I haven’t had time or internet to write anything for today. As I write this (Wednesday morning) I’m preparing for a long drive to Sydney, three days of Nullus Anxietas 5 followed by a long drive back to Melbourne. I hope to have enough energy to start blogging again Wednesday but you might here nothing unscheduled from me until Thursday when I’m supposed to be writing about a male science fiction author starting with the letter V, I’ve chosen van Vogt so I might have time to do this today in which case you’ll get some photos for Friday Photos.
I’m determined to stay on track with my male science fiction authors so you’ll get someone with W next week and the rest of the week will be about the convention. There will be tears, there will be laughter and I hope there will be sleep. I will take as many photos as I possibly can and put them on various social media sites.