So It Grows! The Vonnegut Library staff has added two new employees this Spring. Today, we’re getting to know Tyler Keenan, a recent IUPUI graduate (or “Tarkington University” if you ask Vonnegut) and our new Collections and Facility Manager. Welcome to the team, Tyler!
If you follow us on Instagram, you may recognize Tyler’s voice and sense of humor from these popular posts. He’s also our afternoon tour guide most days, so stop by and say hello if you’re in the neighborhood! Tyler started with us as an intern, and we couldn’t be happier to see him stay and take on the important job of managing our collection. If you want to see more of Tyler’s hard work, check out our First Friday show in a few weeks.
Read on to find out more about how the man behind the tours spends his days.
KVML: What is the best thing you’ve learned so far working at the Vonnegut Library?
TYLER: I think the coolest thing I have learned while at KVML has been how far Vonnegut’s reach is. I’ve given tours to people from Mexico, Finland, and Russia, among other places, that have been influenced by Vonnegut’s work. This experience has really challenged my view of Vonnegut as an American author.
What part of your job brings you the most excitement?
Getting to meet new people is by far the best part of the job. I get to talk to guests about my favorite author and find out what it is they like about Vonnegut and his work. It really is amazing how many people have been deeply influenced by his work.
What is the best moment you’ve had so far?
It seems like almost everyone who comes to KVML is coming for different reasons. One day I gave a tour to a woman whose mom was a huge Vonnegut fan and had recently passed so she had been reading Vonnegut as a way of feeling close to her mom. It was really great talking to her and telling her more about her mom’s favorite author.
What’s the most challenging part of your job?
The most challenging part of working at KVML is finding out what information is most interesting and informative for guests. Vonnegut’s body of work is so diverse that most guests want to learn different things so taking the same approach with every guest doesn’t always work.
What do you like to do when you’re not at the Vonnegut Library?
I recently graduated from IUPUI, so I’m very excited to have more time to read and cook with my girlfriend. We’re also working on planting a garden which I’ve never done before.
What does “common decency” mean to you?
Common decency is treating everyone the same regardless of where they’re from, what they believe, or what they look like. It’s remembering that we’re all just humans and, as Mark Vonnegut said, “trying to get through this thing, whatever it is.”