About

“This is my home online. It’s where you can find me. If you want to know me, knock on the door, and I’ll let you in.” - Austin Kleon 

I’m a learner who writes. I live life and learn things, and then I write here about what I learn. I also write about what I’m creating and consuming and life as a parent and scholar with chronic illness.     

“I write to help ME understand the world, and then share that understanding with others.” - Dr. Raul Pacheco-Vega 

The best way to get to know me is to read my blog archives, but if you’re more interested in my professional qualifications, you can peruse my CV.

Home 

I am mother to a preschooler and co-owner of a 35-year-old home. Managing these two activities takes up a lot of my time. I also live with multiple chronic illnesses; managing those is its own side hustle’s worth of work.

Work 

I am a consulting scholar-librarian and as Sherlock Holmes says of his own profession, “I suppose I am the only one in the world.” At least, the last time I googled the phrase, all the results were from me. 

What this title means is that I can do any of the things a scholar or librarian does; rather than doing them as part of a particular organization, I do them for clients. For example, as a librarian, I have created a custom metadata schema for the National Humanities Center. As a scholar, I work with Quirkos to help people understand their qualitative data analysis software. As a scholar-librarian, I have lectured for classes on topics such as readers’ advisory and responding to book challenges. 

My own research interests lie primarily at the intersection of fan studies and library and information science. I am one of a group of people building a network of scholars at this nexus. My current research focuses on how cosplayers - people who dress as beloved characters either as a hobby or professionally - find, evaluate, use, and share information. 

I am more of a methodologist than a disciplinary expert, with experience in ethnographic techniques and grounded theory. I also have some experience with survey research and descriptive statistics. 

As a librarian, I have expertise in school librarianship, youth services, readers’ advisory, curriculum development, metadata strategy, and content management. 

I am also a writer and editor, writing primarily for a professional librarian audience and editing professional development materials for educators. I plan to expand my work in both of these areas, adding creative nonfiction and fiction to my writing portfolio and academic editing to my editorial work.

For more details on my work, see my Work page.

Play 

What time I have to myself is split between reading, playing video games, crafting, watching Star Trek, and messing around on the web, especially at Micro.blog

In the past, I’ve been a theater and improv performer. I’ve also been an avid player of tabletop roleplaying, board, and card games. Most of these activities are on hold during the pandemic.   For more details about my hobbies, see my Play page.

Need a more formal bio? Here’s one that starts out that way, and then dissolves into silliness.

Kimberly Hirsh is a researcher and consultant. She is a qualitative researcher whose primary research interests act as a bridge between fan studies and library and information science. Her other research interests include connected learning, information literacy, school librarianship, and youth services in libraries.

Her most recent research uses information horizon maps and semistructured interviews to investigate the information literacy practices of cosplayers.

She previously served as a researcher on the Equity in the Making project, a National Science Foundation-funded project exploring how the spatial arrangements of academic makerspaces impact marginalized students’ decisions about whether and how to use them. Kimberly’s responsibilities on the EITM project include collaboratively creating qualitative research instruments such as surveys and interview guides, analyzing qualitative data, and developing a theory of the defining features of academic makerspaces.

She is also one of the creators of Project READY, a series of free, online professional development modules for school and public youth services librarians, library administrators, and others interested in improving their knowledge about race and racism, racial equity, and culturally sustaining pedagogy.

Before beginning her doctoral program, Kimberly worked as public communications specialist and managing editor for LEARN NC, a university outreach program that shared innovative teaching techniques with K-20 educators. Her work at LEARN NC was shaped by her own experiences as a high school Latin teacher and middle school librarian.

Kimberly is also a public speaker, theater and comedy producer and performer, avid reader, inveterate crafter, and eager gamer. She spends most of her time with a remarkable and small human that she grew in her uterus. She has been coding in HTML and CSS since 1996, but gets bored every time she tries to learn JavaScript. She seems to be trying to collect chronic illnesses like some sort of autoimmune Pokémon trainer. She has spent a lot of money on voice and dance lessons, possesses a vast stash of cheap acrylic yarn that fuels her crochet habit, and likes to imagine that she is both a manatee and a unicorn, but not a narwhal. She likes all kinds of media but is increasingly out-of-step with popular culture both because it is growing more fragmented and she is growing more old. She would be happy to introduce you to the dark academia aesthetic.

You made it through all that? Here, have some more details about me.

About the site

kimberlyhirsh.com has been around since 2008. I kept my internet things at many and varied other places before that.

kimberlyhirsh.com is currently hosted on micro.blog with a Premium plan. Micro.blog runs on Hugo.

The theme is a modified version of Marfa, with extra microformats added. The font is Lexend Deca.

I use the following plugins:

I use the following apps and Micropub clients to post:

I use the following apps and services for reading and sharing:

Kimberly Hirsh, PhD @kimberlyhirsh