Speaking My Mind aka Publishing a Blog
Going into my portfolio defense I will not have any professional publishing experience. I will however have spent countless hours working on this blog which in many ways has shaped my lens regarding the dissemination of information and will forever impact any future works I chose to publish.
The first thing that I’ve come away with is an understanding that the information I am trying to disperse and the audience I am trying to reach are key determinants of how I go about publishing information. I chose toblog because blogs are one of today’s most utilized technologies for sharing personal spins of various issues, in my case the CSSA competencies. I chose to blog because it offered my fairly limited audience, mainly my committee the opportunity to keep track of my progress and ask questions along the way. If I were trying to disperse information with more empirical evidence and theoretical support, such as a thesis, then I would need to chose a publishing venue that further validates the information being shared. I would also want the information to be visibly advertised to a larger audience through a scholarly journal, professional association newsletter, etc.
No matter what information I publish I know that I am ultimately responsible for the content and must be responsive to the reactions that people have to my work. Given the relatively low activity on my blog I have yet to be overloaded with reactions and subsequent needs to respond but it is always in the back of my mind. I must be able to back up my claims with evidence, whether based in science, theory, or personal experience and admit holes or areas of subjectivity when my work.
Another key thing that I have had to keep in mind when writing this blog are my relationships with the organizations, departments, offices, and programs that I have had a large impact on my learning throughout the past two years. I have adapted posts to maintain the confidentiality of people I have worked with and also made adaptions out of respect for the inner workings and complex circumstances I experienced within certain programs. I have had to determine what sensitive, personal information to share and rationalized my choices based on the amount of learning that I perceived would come out of sharing. I have considered how supervisors, colleagues, students, friends, and mentors would interpret the information I was sharing and how it might impact my future relationships with them. While these issues may or may not show up in my future publication decisions, my increased thoughtfulness will benefit me in many future endeavors.