Tuesday, August 9, 2011

I'm back...

Well it has been a long time since my last post, but it is time to get this blog going again.  Plenty has been happening, but I haven't felt inclined to write much about it  - especially in a way that I am prepared to share with other people.  Anyway, I have felt inspired by two blog posts recently and I am keen to explore them a bit more.

Firstly, I have opened a twitter account, and you can find me @HelenHickson pretty easy huh! I have had the twitter account for a while and enjoyed the chatter of people I know and people I don't. I saw it as a fun thing to do while I was procrastinating about something else. Then I found this regular weekly chat called #phdchat and each week PhD students and graduate from around the world chat about different topics. The timing is not good for me and I need to get up at around 5 am if I want to participate in real time, but I enjoy reading through the resources, hints and tools that are shared by other students at different stages of their research. It's an amazing resource for PhD students. 

But back to the two blog posts.  Of course, now I have made friends with people on twitter and they share the coolest of stuff.  Dr Inger Mewburn is  The Thesis Whisperer and she writes and collates stories about the experiences of doing a PhD. I have only noticed the twitter feeds before, but they are witty, clever and always so very relevant.  Yesterday she posted a story called, 'Is the University a bad boyfriend'.  What a catchy title! I loved the story and I loved the metaphor and it got me thinking - why did I enrol in a PhD and what are my expectations about University work. Am I on track to have my dreams shattered and is there anything that I can do about it?

Then, today I saw this story in The Age: Lonely PhD student? Just log in.  It is a great story about how the PhD journey does tend to be a lonely and sometimes boring experience, but social media does provide inspiration and food for thought, and the opportunity to connect with other people, anywhere in the world,  who understand just what it is like.  And that has got to be a good thing.

I promise to write more often!

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