Alice is rolling in the dough (yay Alice!!!!), but ScienceWoman is flat broke, both personally and professionally. The personal is a story for another day, but now’s the time to talk about being professionally broke and the implications for my fall research output.
Due to MU’s too restrictive policies, I don’t have any more start-up funds to cushion the first one to three years of going from post-doc to PI. Last year I wrote two proposals. One got funded. The little one. The total uncommitted money remaining in that account is <$300. So, broke. In fact, this fall I've been paying for little field supplies (and all travel) out of pocket. I'll be taking those unreimbursed employee expenses deductions on my 2008 taxes.
So as much as I'd like to be spending hours sitting around with a mug of tea and refining the theoretical advance (backed up by empirical data) that's got a shot at netting me a GlamourMag pub, and as much as certain people might urge me to write, write, write above all else, I’m not spending my research time this fall polishing manuscripts. But I am writing three grant proposals. I’ve also got one already in review. If I get more than one of these proposals funded, I’ll be a busy girl in 2009-2010 and then the publications will come flowing out. (And I’ll be well set up for more and bigger grants…and reappointment.)
But right now I am running myself ragged oscillating between proposal drafts, collecting preliminary data, talking with collaborators, scoping out new field sites, and, oh yeah, teaching two new classes. If you are morbidly curious about my grant writing schedule, venture below the fold. Otherwise, move along…there are plenty of other blogs waiting in your feed reader.
- August 29th – notice of intent due for Team Proposal (submitted!)
- September 10th – AGU abstract deadline (submitted!) But it’s a solo authored abstract, so I had to spend a good chunk of time working up enough data for the abstract, and now I am really committed to finishing the project before December.
- September 24th – Project 1 Pre-proposal due (in progress…) They’re not going to ask for full proposals from everyone, so even though this is short it has got to be good. The biggest piece of work so far has been getting the co-PI and myself on the same page in terms of research questions. Now that that’s accomplished (compromise, compromise, compromise), the draft is moving along nicely.
- October 12th – We find out whether our Project 1 preproposal was successful.
- October 17th – Project 2 full proposal due (idea gestating…) I’m actively waiting on this one (really!) and collecting preliminary data. This proposal is by myself, so I know I must resist the temptation to put it off to the last minute.
- October 20th – Personal proposal due. I think about this one sometimes, but I’m not sure I’d even count it as actively waiting yet.
- October 29th – Team Proposal due (in progress) – Fortunately, I am not the leader and there are lots of team members. So far the workload has not been burdensome. But there are meetings…
- November 6th: Project 1 full proposal due. (conditional on selection of preproposal).
- December 1st-ish – I find out about the currently in review proposal, project 1 proposal, and project 2 proposal. I’ll either be very happy (and overwhelmed) or very despondent and very broke. Keep your fingers crossed.
- December 15th – no matter what the outcome of the proposal race, I still have to have that poster/talk ready for AGU.
- December 20th – I get to take a very long nap.
P.S. Does this post title make anyone else crave falafel?