The first word that came to my mind when thinking of my publishing this year was "waiting."
I didn't publish as much science this year as last. But that's as expected. 2011 may have been my annus mirabilis, with six papers. This year, just two: one journal article and one book chapter. I haven't even seen the book chapter myself in the flesh yet - but it's been shipped, so I'm willing to believe it exists. I'll have a post about the long genesis of the book chapter once I have the printed copy in my hands.
Almost every attempt to publish this year was an exercise in patience. The typesetting of the published manuscript happened at a crawl. Another manuscript that I mentioned in the same post is still on an editor's desk, where it seems to have been for almost a year and a half since I first submitted it. One person asked my why I haven't contacted the editor about it, and my rationale is that time they spend reading an email from me is time that they're not spending getting papers published. Another manuscript went through a much longer review process than I expected. I am hoping that those papers will see the light of day sometime this year.
And it wasn't just the manuscripts, but new projects. I had a couple of very promising little projects that just need a few last pieces of information before I can write them up and send them out the door. But these are also taking longer to get completed than I was hoping.
But as I thought about it a bit more, I remembered that this was also a year where I dabbled with a couple of self-published experiments. I published a paper here on my blog – not a first, but still unusual enough that the story behind it was my most read post of the year. I also self-published my Presentation Tips ebook in a Kindle version, which has earned me a cool $13 in profit.
Getting a proper research article published through the usual routes feels like a greater accomplishment, just because you have had to go through more barriers. The ease of self-publishing stands in stark contrast, and makes that route look very appealing. It's only been a few months since those self-published projects came out, though. This year may help determine whether I actually made a ripple with those experiments.
Good thing I'm not in a hurry
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