Author: Kerry Silva McPherson
I'd like to work in science policy or science communications after my PhD. I've begun to network and seek advice about career development opportunities. When doing so, I come by one piece of advice pretty often, “get writing!” and another less-common piece of advice, “make a twitter and start blogging.”
So, I got a twitter. I spent a month-or-so feeling out the academic and science Twitter-sphere. Engaging within these communities was encouraging, but even so, starting a blog seemed pretty daunting. For a successful blog, you need a website, a following, consistent participation in social media, and a steady flow of blog posts. It would require time and energy that I wasn't sure I had. For a couple of weeks, I considered not blogging at all.
One night, over a glass of wine (where all best ideas happen), I went for it. “Let’s make a blog!” (The “Let’s” meaning my dog and me). While making my website, I said to Adley (my dog), "it’s ridiculous that every PhD student/post-doc/scientist who wants to amass writing experience has to go through this." I wished there was a website where the blog infrastructure already existed that scientists could just submit their writing to (Queue epiphany angels singing).
Excited and optimistic, I made Bolded Science. I used the adjective “Bold” because I envisioned the tone of this blog to be fearless and opinionated. But ironically, I was not being bold at all. In the first month of Bolded Science's existence, my name was not on the brand. I authored anonymously, fearing the blog would be a failure.
Eventually, I got over this fear and credited myself as the creator of Bolded Science. Why? I found my “Boldness” through the support of fellow scientists, a couple of friends at work encouraged me to advertise myself and take ownership. Furthermore, the academic and science twitter community is positive and uplifting, I knew I could succeed in this environment.
And now, I invite you to be bold. Write a blog post for Bolded Science. Get some experience with public writing. Tell us about your field of study, advocate for something science-related you are passionate about, or share a story about yourself as a living, breathing, growing scientist. Get blogging and let Bolded Science worry about the website and twitter account.
By participating in the Bolded Science Community, you help grow a platform for scientists to speak out. I am thankful for every follower, reader, and guest author.