We hope everyone has noticed that Nursology.net has heaps of opportunities for people to contribute – but did you know that you can contribute to our blog? This blog is a multi-author blog (MAB), plus we welcome guest authors – which gives you an opportunity to become familiar with the process of blogging. But wait a minute – I can already “hear” in my mind some of the push-back to this idea: “I don’t have time to blog.” “Writing a blog does not contribute to the list of publications I need for promotion – I can’t waste time blogging.” “I need citations to my work and blog posts do not get cited.” OK – I hear you! But before you turn away from this idea, indulge me for a few moments and consider a some good reasons you might begin in the world of blogging!
- Blogs give you an opportunity to write in a different “voice” – a more relaxed tone that reaches people in ways that formal writing does not. You can express your opinion, test out an idea to see if it “flies,” and ask your readers for specific feedback.
- In fact, writing a blog post helps you develop the courage to use your voice — a challenge nurses often face. My idea for this blog post was in part prompted by a post in an entirely different field – written by Marte C.W. Solheim from Norway, who tells a compelling story about finding the courage, as a PhD Student and then a recent graduate, to use her voice in the field of economics and political science.
- Blog posts do not take away from the necessary work involved in your scholarship – instead the process of writing a blog post is like “thinking” time – it is an opportunity to reflect on points of particular importance to the ongoing development of your ideas.
- Blog posts are being cited more and more often, and any social media mention of published work contributes to the “altmetric attention score” that is now displayed on published articles to indicate the amount and reach of the content in an author’s published works. One of the very important features that we are including throughout Nursology.net is the name of the contributor of content on any page (and on the blog), and the date the information was posted, in order that Nursology.net content can be accurately and adequately cited, with due credit to the appropriate author.
- Your blog post provides readers an opportunity to give you feedback – much like a presentation at a conference – even if you do not invite it! Feedback on your blog post is documented evidence of how your ideas are being received. And sometimes they contribute to the development of your ideas.
- Writing a blog post is not nearly as hard as you might think! Blog posts are short, to the point and can include any kind of commentary or opinion that you want to include. Of course if you draw on another source for some of your ideas (as I have done in this post) – there are no style manuals or formating requirements – as long as you find a way to point accurately to your sources, you are good to go!
- Blog posts have the potential to reach an audience that you would never reach in a published article — nursology colleagues who might never see your published articles, important scholars in other fields, and most important, the public whose interests your work is intended to serve. As Patrick Dunleavy pointed out on a recent LSE Impact blog, having invested hours and hours of time on your work, why not spend a couple of hours crafting an accessible blog post that has the potential to reach a broad audience?
- Writing for blogs is rapidly becoming a new form of scholarly communication that draws on many of the ideals of the open-access model – blogs are also referred to as short-form digital publishing. They are intended to broadcast your ideas as widely as possible.
- You do not have to trudge through the long and arduous process of journal or book publishing, especially if you blog on your own blog! Blogs are open to “public review” – a form of review that is not replacing the very valuable process of anonymous peer review, but is increasingly valued as a way to determine the worth of ideas in a public forum. If someone takes issue with your ideas, in all likelihood you will find out about it in short order. This is a huge benefit — you cannot adequately address what you do not know is “out there” and blog readers are one of your best sources to explore the landscape of opinion related to your ideas.
The nursology.net multi-authored blog (MAB) team members are committed to writing regularly for the blog in order to have a new post at least weekly, and to provide a diversity of perspective, style, and content! Some of our bloggers write their posts directly, using the handy “add a post” feature on wordpress.com (where our site is hosted). Others send me the content for their blog either by email or using our handy blog submission form (also found in the sidebar on every Nursology.net page!). You can see who is on our team in the right sidebar, showing everyone’s name and a link to their most recent posts.
As the lead blogger, I make sure the links and other details are in order, and schedule each post 2 to 4 weeks in advance. If your post is time-sensitive, we will post it at whatever date is optimal. If I have any questions about something that is not clear, or if I detect something that needs to be double-checked for accuracy, either I, or someone else on our management team will be in touch to make sure your post is the best it can be. We might do a bit of light editing to correct spelling or obvious grammatical errors, but we do not aim for perfection! What we do NOT do is revise or change your own message – we want your post to reflect your own ideas, your own voice. We welcome controversial content, especially when you include sound rationales for your perspective and welcome open discussion. The only thing we will intervene with is anything that is disrespectful or harmful, or “flaming” of other individuals or groups.
So this is our invitation to you!! Use this opportunity to try your hand at blogging! Let me know about your idea and we will assist you in every way possible to become a published short-form digital author (or if you prefer, a published blogger)!