Monday, December 30, 2013

Irresolution 2014

Over at the Duck, Megan McKenzie lists five academic resolutions that she is unlikely to keep:
  1. don't go to the polisci rumors webpage
  2. don't take redeyes to conferences
  3. don't share conference hotel rooms
  4. figure out how to file expenses
  5. take the money for book reviews rather than the book credits publishers offer.
My immediate reactions are:
  1. I need to keep going back to PSR until someone figures out the mystery of why I post there.
  2. I don't take redeyes to save on hotels/flights, but will be taking the mother of all redeyes this year---Australia to participate in a book workshop but also to present my book, to get a chance at United Gold, and to go to a beach in March.
  3. How else can I maintain privileged access to the chocolate chip cookies Bill Ayres brings to the ISA?  I have found good conference buddies so this is not a problem.
  4. Not so much figuring out how to file but staying on top of this stuff, especially with so much travel ahead this year.
  5. I avoid this problem by not reviewing books for presses except for quite rarely.  I get enough requests to do tenure reviews (crap, there is another one on my desk) that they tend to crowd out my book review time.
So, what am I resolving to do more/less in 2014?
  1. More self-promotion.  You might not think that is possible, but I want the new book with Dave to sell well and to have an impact.  So, I am going to blog/tweet/speak as much as I can.  I am mighty proud of our work on this, and I genuinely think this book is interesting (see the blurbs).  So, I will have no shame (as if I had any before) about promoting. it.
  2. Return to my old email habits.  I used to respond instantly and file immediately.  Now, I go through the pile on a weekly basis.  Need to go back to the old ways.  I also need to do a better job of reading people's stuff, returning comments, returning reviews in a timely manner.
  3. Say no more often.  This is on Megan's list from the previous year.  I am way over-committed, so that I am behind on a bunch of stuff.  With the two books done and nearly done, I can go back to some article projects that have been sitting around for far too long.  But while I do that, I need to resist the urge to say yes to other stuff, whether that is new research projects, more reviews of more stuff or whatever.  I hope to un-bury in 2014 so I can be less guilty in 2015 and also have a bunch of stuff under review. 
  4. Remain focused on declaring success.  Despite the aforementioned guilt, I had a very good 2013 and part of that was recognizing I was having a very good 2013.  I continue to love my new job (even as it is less new), new neighbors, new house, new city, and new frisbee teams. 
  5. Stop smoking.  Ok, I don't smoke.  This one is easy.
  6. Write less?  I am already committed to too many outlets, including this one.  So, I resolve to try not to write as much online stuff and be ok with averaging fewer posts per month. 
  7. Listen better.  I am a lousy listener. 
  8. Read more.  I am way behind on reading journal articles, relevant books and so on.  
  9. Be ok with not fulfilling these resolutions.

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