Monday, January 5, 2009

An Existential Dilemma

Today was supposed to be the day when everything returned to normal here at The Feminist Underground - we're back from travel and our visiting friends have all returned to their homes; but... I've accepted a job! No, not with these doods. Instead I'm teaching at a local college, and doing some T.A. training and supervising too.

Great news for my bank account, but I'm feeling a little melancholy. I mean... is there blogging after one's accepted a full-time job? How will I even get through all my feeds?

So, fellow bloggers with full-time jobs, I put the question to you - how do you find time to produce quality posts after hours? Is it better to cut back the number of posts or to publish shorter posts daily? Are you sneaking posts at the office or staying up late? Seriously, I've been either working from home or part-time since we started, so I'm new to the world of Bloggers With Rush Hour Commutes.



petpluto said...

I'm not going to lie - blogging whilst working and having some semblance of a life is incredibly difficult. But I also think it is doable. I started blogging to fill up my jobless and tediously boring days; but it is addicting and I like writing my thoughts and feelings.

Generally, I try to think of various topics throughout the day to blog on, one or two intense posts requiring actual thought and prep time and a couple of thoughts that just caught my fancy and don't need deep, thoughtful probing and examination. I keep a list of those on hand, so that in the event I have time during my day or after I get home, I can pull out one of the labor intensive post topics - and if I don't, I can remember my thoughts on one of the easier topics. And then there are what happens most days, which is I completely abandon my well thought out plan and read something that strikes me that I absolutely have to blog about right then.

And yes, blogging now does cut into sleep. I'm actually supposed to be asleep right now. But instead I'm catching up on my favorite blogs. And writing a bit of a dissertation here.

Congrats on the job, by the way! It sounds like a cool one, and without the discouraging illegal interview questions.

Amelia said...

Aw, congrats on the job.

And although I only work part time while I go to school full-time, for me, it's easier to just cut back on the number of posts and write when something really strikes me as important. But that's just me.

Anyway, you can do it! I believe in you. :)

Queers United said...

quality is everything, cut back if you must.

Sungold said...

Oh, you *rock*, Habladora! I'm so happy you got a job.

I'm in a non-tenure track university teaching position. When I started blogging nearly a year ago, I was ostensibly part time but in fact my workload is not proportionately greater this year, now that I've gone full time.

The great thing about teaching is it does offer some flexibility. I often write in the evenings when I'm too tired to do much else. I sometimes write in the late afternoons or on the weekends while my kids are running around. (Quality sometimes suffers accordingly.)

And I sometimes sneak in a post during the day. So don't fret if you do that sometimes - you'll put in your 40 hours for your job, and then some! I do a lot of my class prep at home, and I don't have a commute (I can easily bike or walk), so that gives me some extra flexibility. If I futz with my blog during the day, then I end up doing more paid work at night.

When things get crazy, my blogging tends to be more perfunctory. But I also use material I blog about in my teaching, and vice versa. That's one reason I'll never be the most topical blogger. I like to mull over things. I like to let a post rest. And if that means I post on something after it's no longer the topic du jour, that's just fine.

I'm not good at keeping up with feeds. That's one area where I really fall down. Oh well.

Don't underestimate how much your blogging - and blog reading - can enrich your teaching. My evaluations have actually gone up since I got swept up in blogging. You didn't mention what you'll teach, but I bet you can find ways to incorporate blogs into your paid work.

Now go celebrate! You deserve this.

Kris-Stella said...

Congratulations on landing the job! It can't have been easy given what's going on with budgets for almost anything. Well done =)

Does being a grad student count at all toward having a job? I do have a policy of not blogging while doing work, and I try to work during the whole day, most days. So maybe it counts a little ;)

Usually I manage to stick to my policy, and my blogging comes either from evenings when I'm not doing much else, or else from staying up late. I'm afraid that doesn't sound very encouraging... I do use breakfast and dinner time to go through my feeds, so that's a tip. (If you have a family that's willing to put up with anti-social behaviour like that, of course.) In theory, you could also use weekends to write several posts and schedule them to be posted during the week, but I never actually manage that.

Kandee said...

I work in tech which means that I'm on the computer all the time anyway. So that's how I do it.

Maggie said...

For me, blogging with a full-time job was easier because I was blogging about things that I would review every day as part of my job. In fact, I ended up shutting down my blog after I left my job because I just couldn't manage the same routine.

But for you, I'd say don't worry too much. You may not be able to post as often, but I'm sure you'll still be posting once you get used to the schedule. And congrats on the job!

frau sally benz said...

I've never blogged without having a full-time job, but as you already know, my access comes in waves. Sometimes things are slow at work and my creativity is flowing, so I get several posts up in a week. Sometimes it gets too crazy and I go weeks without a substantial post.

Unlike Maggie, however, I try to avoid writing about things directly related to my job. It would be much easier for me to write about the things I see, feel and experience (particularly b/c I work in women's rights), but to preserve the little anonymity I have left and to protect the organization I work for, I don't go there.

Mächtige Maus said...

Congrats on the job! :)

Now...for the love of god don't ask me how to juggle work and posting because I have failed miserably at it of late. I had a good balance going and then took on an additional permanent project at work that has translated into a lot of weekend overtime just to keep on top of it all.

So, I have found it difficult. However, I know for a fact that you are more on top of the news in general than I am on a daily basis so I think you are going to easily run across information that means something to you. Also, you are a natural writer so that translates into an easier time of getting it out there to the masses. Maybe just go for shorter pieces calling attention to issues for the time being? That lets you fall into a groove while leaving room to get back to more in depth posts.

But then again...what do I know? When is the last time you have heard from me? :)

NewsCat said...

I'm very late to this party to comment, but I think I'm also an example of why blogging is either a hobby or a second job.

I've found when I'm happy in my job -- busy working on projects that I like -- I don't feel as much of a need or drive to blog.

And it's fine to treat blogging as a hobby you can pick up and leave whenever you want. Why add unneeded stress to your life?

But people who want their blogs to be something other than personal exercises in writing, have to set a blogging schedule and stick to it. Once a day posts at least. Or at least every other day posts at minimum.

And let me be honest, blogging like that *is* work. Sure it can be creative and fun and all that, but if you treat your blog like it has a daily deadline it gets wearing. But the blogs I go back to read, even the "cute" ones likes Cake Wrecks and PassiveAggressiveNotes post up something new every day.

I've never been able to keep up such a schedule myself, which is why I had to stop beating myself up for not posting more often. While I personally wanted to be thought of as a "serious" blogger I realized I didn't have the discipline to keep up a writing schedule to match it.