Last year around this time, I was scrambling to propose my dissertation and apply for internships. After the first slew of applications were in, I took a leap and applied for an Active Minds Emerging Scholars Fellowship. I had hoped to learn how to write about psychology for a lay-audience and I knew I needed guidance, but I didn’t think I’d be selected (who really believes they’re going to get a competitive scholarship, aside from the most narcissistic among us?). I treated it like a numbers game, the way I occasionally throw a dollar at Mega Millions: you have to buy a ticket to win and it’s nice to dream, but don’t count on anything.
It’s a year later and my (unusually long) name is in print. Active Minds took a chance on my project and connected me with Kaja Perina, editor-in-chief of Psychology Today, who generously shared–and continues to share–her time and wisdom with me. I cannot overstate my gratitude to Kaja–I’m still clueless, and it is immensely reassuring to have a competent and steadfast guide through the woods. Andrew Leland, writer and host of the offbeat and imaginative podcast The Organist (do yourself a favor and take a listen), and the kind and helpful Spring 2015 nonfiction workshop at MU took me in and helped me shape my pieces.
Kaja encouraged me to start this blog and invited me to develop a post on cricket flour protein bars into a piece for Psychology Today. Hara Marano at PT gave clear direction and structure for the piece. That article is in the November 2015 issue.
I still have a lot to learn, but I’m thankful for the encouragement and sound advice from my mentors. Internship and dissertation writing have supplanted blogging, but if you have been following my posts and want more, don’t worry: the hiatus is limited. Kaja has invited me to start blogging for PT when I get clear of grad school requirements, and when that happens, you will be the first to know. Or the second (after my mom).