26 June 2014

The river flows and the journey moves on

via: https://www.flickr.com/photos/33488462@N04/3771091859/
When I think about life, I generally think about a stream and how it moves around the landscape.  Growing up there was a stream that ran behind our house and it had this one spot that was perfect for playing in.  It had gently sloping sides for easy access and the water was so still that you could see the minnows playing tag at the bottom and the water spiders could dance upon the surface.  But it was only this was for about five feet, before it changed, as a stream does.  It flowed down rocks and around trees, creating little eddies that trapped leaves, and it would flow down hills and create mini-falls and through culverts that man attempted to control it by. And sometimes...sometimes the stream would forge its on way to move past obstacles, before getting back into the path later on.  But it moved on.

And like the stream that forged its own path to get past obstacles, I'm doing the same.  After 8 years at Mercer University, I will be leaving my position on August 21, 2014 and begin a new phase of career/life/journey.  This fall I will begin the MFA in Applied Cartooning at the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, Vermont.  This is the inaugural class for the MFA in applied cartooning and I'm excited to be a part of it.  I've been describing the program as using my skills, talents, abilities, etc. for helping connect comics/graphic novels to the larger community, whether it be schools or health organizations or libraries or other, but I'll be helping the larger community discover the power of the illustrated word.  Over the last few years a passion of mine has been helping my library, and others to a smaller extent, connect with how comics and graphic novels are an integral part of not just reading, but our learning experiences.  So I'm excited to have the chance to work towards expanding this on a much broader level.

So what does that mean for this blog and my connection with libraries?  Honestly?  Well...I won't be presenting at library conferences as much, at least for a while.  Otherwise...not much.  Y'all are stuck with me until the ends of time as the library is in me.  I still have ideas/things I want to write about the larger library world and I will.  As far as comics and graphic novels go, I'm still striving to help libraries with connecting with comics, graphic novels, artists, publishers, common core standards, challenges, etc....just on a bit of a broader level now.  I'll be sharing what's going on with me on in a variety of spots most likely, so look here or to my webpage, ashuping.net, to keep up.

So...if you're interested, stay tuned, and hold on cause the stream is about to curve.