Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year!

I just wanted to put up a quick post wishing all of my readers and fellow postacademic bloggers a Happy New Year.

2011 has been a surprising year of ups and downs for me. I started out the year anticipating several interviews for academic jobs, with all of its attendant stress and worry. Within 2.5 months, I'd been on three academic job interviews and had resoundingly decided that this life wasn't for me anymore. What has followed has been 9.5 months of the most intense soul-searching I've ever had to do in my entire life.

I started this blog in March, hoping that it might give me some clarity on leaving ... and thinking that one or two other people might find it out here in the blogsophere and find something I wrote helpful. To my great surprise, many people have found it, and lots of you have told me that it's been a tremendous comfort for you.

I'm grateful that I could provide this space for other people to read and comment and know they aren't alone. Writing has been immensely therapeutic for me, and I'm glad to be one of the people out here (along with my fellow bloggers to the right) who are getting the word out about people who - gasp! - don't enjoy academia or simply want to pursue a career with better prospects. As I keep telling you, you're not alone.

But I'd also like to say that for as many of you who've said that this blog has given you comfort? Well ... all of your comments and pageviews and emails have comforted me as well. As certain as I was that I wanted to leave, it it always nice to know that you're not crazy or making a terrible mistake when you're making a big life change. And all of your pageviews and comments and everything like that have reminded me on a daily basis that I'm not crazy for seeing flaws in academia, I'm not stupid for not wanting to chase the academic job market, and - at the end of the day - that I'm not alone in wanting something else for my life.

So on this New Year's Eve, I wanted to put up a post thanking all of you for reading here and leaving comments. My intention is to keep this blog up and running until I find my "next job" outside of academia. Posting may be a bit lighter in the next few months, since I'll be spending time job searching. But I'll keep putting up new content at least until I find a job, so it has a clear beginning and end point. (And of course, if I feel motivated to keep writing after that, I will).

But one thing I'll do - as long as Google allows it - is to keep the archives published and always keep the email address associated with this blog active (and set to forward to my primary email so that I don't miss anything). So if you are finding this years after it's been written, don't hesitate to comment or email. The chances are pretty good that I'll respond.

And in the meantime, as of December 31, 2011? Thank you all for reading and commenting. I would also like to remind you that tomorrow begins a brand new year ... a great time for new beginnings and New Year's Resolutions. If you're thinking that it really is time to leave academia, perhaps tomorrow is the day to start.

Happy New Year!!


  1. Happy new year to you, and best wishes as you continue to build your post-academic life! I found your blog only about a month or so ago, and not a moment too soon! After coming to an emotionally fraught decision of my own that academia is not for me (and having an unsuccessful conversation with my adviser about it), I really, really needed to hear that I was not alone. So, thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences with your audience. It has helped many of us more than you know.

  2. Echoing the above commenter--thanks so much for all that you do. It's been especially helpful for me as someone in sociology--not the that blogs written by humanities folks aren't also helpful, but sometimes the value of staying in academia is debated in humanities vs. STEM terms, and we social science folks get left out.

    Wishing all the best for you moving forward, and hoping to come to my own decision in 2012!