Hello again! If you are a regular blog reader, then you know it has been a good long while since my last post in which I outlined my plan for a spring academic writing sprint. I had also shared with you all my progress on spring semester goals with the idea of keeping myself accountable. The last time I even thought about blogging was during my spring break—that fateful week in which my pregnancy nausea kicked in. Those of you who have been pregnant or who have watched a partner go through the first trimester will not be surprised when I say it was all I could do to get through my spring and then summer teaching obligations with my head on straight. Between the fatigue and perpetual (not just morning!) sickness, every day felt like a slog. My to-do list became a what-must-I-do list and that was that. I was also dealing with high anxiety because of my miscarriage last year, so it was not until the nausea had subsided and the baby started kicking that I felt relaxed enough to start preparing for and enjoying my pregnancy. And then a whole new level of work-malaise set in, and I found it hard to want to do anything other than prep for baby which, apparently, is rather common for pregnant people. In spite of all that, I managed to tackle all my goals except starting the new article that I had planned for my spring AcWriMo sprint. I’m calling that a win, my peeps. And also a testimony not to my tendency to overwork (of which I am trying to do less), but rather some realistic goal setting on my part–a topic I might expand on in a later post.
What have you all been up to? Hopefully surviving and thriving in spite of what turned out to be a rather devastating summer in many respects. I hope, above all, you managed to get some rest for your weary souls.
Below, I have some fun announcements that I’ve been meaning to share with you. I am happily on maternity leave for the fall semester and trying my best not to fill my remaining baby-free days with work I don’t need to be doing. That being said, I have spent these past three months thinking carefully about what professional and creative projects I want to keep doing after baby is in the picture after my year of experimentation (podcasting! youtubing! blogging!) all while keeping in mind that my entire life is about to change and that I can always, in response, change my mind. All of which leads me to….my new Fall*/Maternity Leave** Goals list <trumpet sounds>.
*to also include the month of August
**obvs. this refers to pre-baby maternity leave time because, after she arrives, I will be doing NOTHING except marveling that she’s finally here and keeping her alive.
Fall / Maternity Leave Goals
- Work on Edited Collection
- Spring 2023 Classes Prep
- (hopefully) tackle proofs of Wikipedia article
- Lit Rev for Tweetsets Article
- Finish baby prep
- Writing Retreat w/ Writing Coven
- Experiment w/ Substack Newsletter
Not bad for two non-teaching months, right? (I’m not counting the 9th month because anything can happen). Hopefully those of you who are already parents aren’t rolling your eyes across the interwebs at my optimism. I tried to keep it doable and even put some goals on there that are designed to help with the other goals (e.g. writing retreat–>lit review). Below are some details about my newest projects in case you’re curious.
Edited Collection CFP: Community Engagement and the Covid-19 Pandemic
If you or anyone you know did higher education community-engagement work during the Covid-19 pandemic (which, of course, is still going on), please take a look at this CFP (deadline August 31st). The idea is to gather experiences, challenges, and lessons for doing this kind of work amidst a global, national, and local crisis as well as to spotlight higher ed CE work more broadly.
Early Career Academic Substack Newsletter
Why a newsletter instead of simply maintaining this blog, you might ask. In truth, it reflects how I myself consume similar content. I am much more likely to read something if it comes directly to my inbox. I’m also more likely to share it with people I know via email. Also, it appeals to me because I will not feel the same pressure to promote every post on social media. Finally, I think (!?) I am going to want some small thing that stimulates my brain during the newborn months, and this letter seemed like a low-stakes option to fulfill that need.
For those of you who subscribe to this wordpress blog, thank you for reading my work! If you want to continue to read it regularly, please use the link below to subscribe to my new substack:
My current plan is to post *occasional* professional updates on wordpress, so if you want my more regular content (and spicy takes!) that will be newsletter-only.
Moving forward, you can leave comments on each newsletter that arrives by clicking on the “comment” button at the top of each newsletter. You can also hit me up on Twitter: @litambitions or LinkedIn. Finally, there’s always my contact page. I love to hear from you and exchange ideas on how to manage the #academiclife.