I’m in a tenure track position here, so that means I have to do some research and publish about it in order to get tenure and be promoted to Associate. That causes a bit of anxiety. It’s not that I don’t like to do research; I’ve always enjoyed informal research of my own. It’s just that I am unsure of the formal research process. Sure, I took research methods, but that doesn’t mean I’m prepared for it. I really need someone who’s done it a time or two to guide me through the process, an experienced someone who can be a collaborator on my first few projects.
As for topics, when I started this job back in July, I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to come up with good research topics. Now that I’ve been on the job for almost two months, that, thankfully, has proved not to be the case. I seem to get ideas all the time now. I write myself notes on Google Docs about each one: the general idea, some potential research questions, etc. I just don’t know if these are good ideas worth pursuing. Hopefully that will work itself out.
I have visions of becoming a highly prolific author, but that is probably pie-in-the-sky. I don’t have to be a highly prolific author for tenure and promotion, I just want to be. We’ll see how that turns out. Until then, I’ll just keep jotting my notes down.