Academaze: Calling Advance Readers

Okay… I know the following is no one’s first choice for a blog topic, but we gotta do this. It won’t hurt too much, I promise!

The tentative release date for “Academaze” is a little over a month away. Melanie has demonstrated superhuman patience in working with me (thanks, Melanie!) and the collection is coming along nicely.

This is where I need your help.

If you would like to be an advance reader, please let me know. That means you get to read the book for free (most likely an e-book) in return for an honest review on your own blog and/or Amazon/Goodreads etc. If you already signed up on the Annorlunda page, thank you!  If not, please either leave a comment here with your contact info or email me at xykademiqz at gmail.

These early reviews are really important and helpful for the book to take off. Having early reviews shortly after the book appears will do wonders for making the book visible.

So if you like the blog, this will really help bring the writing and the doodles to a broader audience!

Many thanks… in advance! (As Darcy of Wilde Life says, “Pun always intended.”)

Da Book, It Lives!

The collection is nearly done and the blog will be returning to its irregularly scheduled programming next week.

The book is nice and tight, at circa 83k words. It will soon be off to graze on greener pastures , with editor Melanie R. Nelson of Annorlunda Books. If all goes well, we might be looking at an April release date!

Here’s a tentative high-level table of contents (i.e., chapter titles only). Each chapter has a number of essays in it and at least one cartoon, but usually several. I am pretty clear in the foreword that this is about my experiences at a research university and in the sciences, so its applicability may be somewhat limited.

Foreword (What the Book is About)
What Professors at Research Universities Actually Do
Academic Job Search
The Tenure Track
Teaching and Service
Grant Proposals and Funding
Working with Grad Students and Postdocs
Technical Writing with Junior Scientists
Peer Review of Papers and Grant Proposals
Giving Talks and Networking
Colleagues, Collaborators, and Academic Politics
Work-Life Balance
Women in STEM

There were a couple of changes that I realized I would have to make.

One is that I need a real-name-sounding pseudonym for indexing purposes. I have come up with one, and it’s pretty awesome; Eldest grudgingly helped while munching on peppered pistachios.

Another, where I would appreciate people’s input, is the title. I wanted to call the book “Academic Jungle,” like the old blog, but last year somebody self-published a book by the same title (I won’t link to it, you can find it on Amazon if you want; based on what I read of it, I don’t feel like I can recommend it). However, the book blurb sounds, on the surface, similar enough to what my book is about, that we don’t want to go there and get the two mixed.

So we need a new title. The subtitle will be along the lines of “Essays and Cartoons on Being a Professor at a Research University in the US.”

Here are some title suggestions for the book, more or less silly.

1) Xykademiqz (obviously awesome, even if it doesn’t mean anything)
2) Confessing on Professing (even I say “ugh!” to this one)
3) Acadreamia (upon googling, found out there is a design firm with this name)
4) I Dream of Academe (there seems to be a blog or something similar with this name)
5) Funkademia (there is a night club with that name; also, I am not funky at all)
6) Adventures in Academic Science (my favorite, although vaguely resembling the title of Janet Stemwedel’s blog)
7a) The Research University (would require massaging of the subtitle to something like Essays and Cartoons on Academic Science in the US)
7b) Adventures at a Research University (w/ same subtitle as above)
8) Academic Confidential (there is a similarly titled post in Inside Higher Ed)
9) STEMcademics (too vague? )
10) Momcademics (I don’t want to lead with the momminess of my existence)
11) I Have the Best Job in the World (rubbing it in much?)
12) Glass Ceiling in the Ivory Tower (would be OK if it were all about women in science, but it’s not; also, someone thought about it, found upon googling)
13) Granting Wishes (Eldest’s contribution; would be great if it were focused on grants)

What say you, blogosphere? Thoughts, suggestions? Favorites, least favorites?