Just some ideas I’ve been floating around for conference submissions. I’m still pretty new to this conference game so any feedback is appreciated!! Thanks!
The Takeaway From This Presentation Is: I list in detail all the ways I ignored takeaway advice from presentations at other conferences, despite my best intentions.
We Would Be Happy to Give You Feedback: a panel discussion where each panellist shares job rejection feedback they have received from interview panels.
How Do We Attract More Men: A performance piece where I read out in historical order every instance in an Australian library journal or report of someone commenting on the lack of men in librarianship.
The Carla Hayden Fan Club: I just play a YouTube supercut of Carla Hayden giving amazing speeches.
I Love Libraries: I am a public figure who loves libraries. I detail how happy I am to be here, tell a joke I heard about librarians once, follow this up with a thoughtful anecdote about how librarians are underestimated, tell a story about my childhood librarian, shake my head as I tut tut a politician’s uninformed remark about libraries, and wrap up with something inspirational about how libraries can save the world. I finish by being paid more than any other speaker on the program, to a standing ovation.
A Workshop: I lead a workshop that is a direct copy of a workshop I took somewhere else, but I have made new handouts so I hope nobody notices.
Librarian Dance-Off: I separate the introverts and extroverts in the room into two different teams, call them the Jets and the Sharks, and challenge them to a dance battle to end the introvert vs extrovert debate once and for all.
So You’re Thinking of Doing an MBA: There are two library managers standing in front of a locked door. One manager tells only lies, the other speaks only truth. To find out which manager has the door key to escape the conference room, the audience have to solve an intricate series of management riddles using only their wits and an old copy of Harvard Business Review.
Provocative Library Thought Leadership Drag Storytime: I read a story about library innovation while dragged up as a “white male middle-class university professor who hasn’t worked in libraries for 20 years”.
Cat-aloguing: I explain how to catalogue cat gifs, cat videos, cat memes and actual cats. It is an excuse to play a lot of cat videos on a big screen. Perfect for a late afternoon slot.
The Price Is Right: I host a version of the game show where, instead of guessing the price of consumer goods, the audience has to read library job ads and guess the starting salaries.
Live User Experience Testing: An exciting 20 minutes where I have to find a library catalogue, reset my password, and download an ebook. Will I make it through the third party software installation in time?
Nap Time: I pretend I’m going to do a presentation but instead I bring blankets and pillows so we can all enjoy 20 minutes of mid-conference napping, catching up on Twitter, or simply not speaking to anyone.