On the first Sunday of this year, I was lying in the nursery/crèche tent at church with Liam, listening to Pastor Oscar talk about new year’s resolutions. I realized then that I really have (or at least should have) only one big goal for this year – finish my dissertation. The next thought was “you have to kill the blog.” (A thought that has been growing for a while.) The time has come.
When I started this blog,
just over a year ago, I thought it would help my writing and thinking in ways that could move my dissertation forward more quickly. It turns out that while it has helped my personal development and has helped focus my long-term interests, it distracts from my dissertation productivity. (Christi has jokingly threatened to count dissertation pages vs. blog pages.)
As much as I hate to admit it, maintaining this blog takes more time than I want it to, and I enjoy every minute of it. It’s not that what I put up is particularly profound, but my slow brain (and a slow internet connection) can turn even “quick” posts into forty-five extra minutes of editing and waiting for pages to load. It doesn’t help that internet access works backwards here. It’s best early in the morning (productive brain time) and not at all late in the day (when I could use some winding down), and there’s only access in the library — not in our student apartment. Also, my mind tends to wander (away from my dissertation writing) towards important conversations that are taking place chez my blogging friends (see blogroll) – too much interesting stuff. Those extra minutes need to be spent (at least for now), writing or editing a page of my dissertation, reading some Greek or Hebrew, learning to read German, or simply thinking about my main project.
Overall, I want to become an resource serving Christian leaders in Africa as well as a resource and advocate to the rest of the world (“the West”) about Christianity in Africa. This blog serves those aims; it gives me a venue to post and link to resources. More importantly, the conversation with the on-line community helps me grow in my own thinking. So I hope to be back, but who knows.
About six months ago, when I saw and liked the direction this blog was going, I set up a different blog that could focus exclusively work in Luke-Acts where I might get some feedback from the smaller group of people that are actually interested in that subject at that level. Currently, it is still listed as “private” and I haven’t yet posted to it, but it could provide a place for more focused academic thinking, getting feedback on things related to my dissertation project, and providing a resource starting down the road of studying Luke-Acts.
Originally, I was going to ask you my respected friends for advise to help resolve my blogging-dissertation dilemma :
a. quit blogging completely?
b. blog lighter here (quick links and quotes- i.e. parasitic blogging)?
c. blog more academically here?
But the more I thought about it, the more I felt like I already knew what I needed to do. A few weeks ago, I cleared out all the posts I’d started saving up at the end of last year. Now, I’m done.
I may still do a bit of b; I’ve already been doing it for a few weeks (I’ll at least keep up the “Links of the Day” on the right), but regarding c:
- I’m not smart or engaging enough to have the type of wide-ranging, serious biblioblog that a broader audience would enjoy.
- I’d lose most of the great blogosphere friends I’ve met and come to enjoy this year – those who share some of my eclectic interests in African Christianity, the Bible, culture, ethnicity, social justice, economics, Kenya, early Christianity, etc.
- Those who’d be somewhat interested in the academic specifics (and happen to be on-line) would only have time to give it the occasional skim anyway.
Sooo . . . . with a typical TCK “goodbye” . . . Thanks for a great year! Pray for me! You know, with today’s technology, I’ll still be kind of around; it just won’t be the same . . . See you later . . . [till my next parasitic post. ;-)]
We’ll see if this actually works ;-). [I already know what the next post that breaks this will be, but it might take a while to get it up.]