This week’s Ask a ScienceBlogger question deals with blogging itself, and not so much with science:
How is it that all the PIs (Tara, PZ, Orac et al.), various grad students, post-docs, etc. find time to fulfill their primary objectives (day jobs) and blog so prolifically?
I have a slightly more serious response to this than many of my co-bloggers, simply because I half expect the issue to come up at my tenure review in the fall.
I don’t make any real effort to hide my blog (obviousy), but I also don’t advertise it on campus. I know a few of my students are aware of its existence, and a few guys in another department read it, but I don’t think any of my immediate colleagues know about it (or at least, none of them have mentioned it to me).
I haven’t talked about blogging at work, becuase I’m a little worried that blogging is hazardous to academic health. It’s an outside activity that isn’t teaching or research, and thus might be seen as frivolous. Which is why I at least half expect to have to defend my blogging practices at tenure time– I don’t plan to bring it up, but somebody involved will probably check me out on Google.
So, my answer to this week’s question is basically a defense: I manage to blog as I do because this is my hobby. The time I spend on blogging is time that I would otherwise spend doing something else to decompress from my primary activities. I write posts in the morning before work, over lunch, or in the evening after I’m done with other things, and I schedule them to appear during the day, when I’m at work.
The total time spent actively blogging is probably less than two hours a day. You’d be hard pressed to find anyone in academia who doesn’t spend two hours a day doing something that isn’t research-related. Some people garden, some people knit, some people refinish antiques– I publish stuff on the Internet. If I wasn’t doing this, I’d be doing something else to relax– reading novels, or watching tv.
Of course, you’ll also notice that I’m not all that prolific, relative to many of my co-bloggers… I really don’t know how they do it.