Sunday, October 11, 2015

Jazz on Sunday, Thinking Back to Pre-Tenure

At a coffee house I dig just outside of Tacoma; and listen to jazz. Its been a while since I have written to jazz; its something I used to do a great deal. Sitting here, it reminds me of what it was like to write as a young assistant professor at Colorado State, back in 2000.  Pre-tenure, there was this constant pressure and a bit of fear. In the right doses, it was energizing. While some of you may think this is a bit crazy, part of me misses that constant external push in the background of my life.

The costs were so high if I failed; a young family that relied on me, the hopes for a life's work as a scholar that depended upon the evaluations of others. That push kept me writing, writing in a way that helped me to produce work that I perhaps would not have done so without. It is different now, I write what I want, when I write, and have very little external pressure. While the decrease in anxiety has led to freedom, I do miss those times, and am reminded of them today.

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