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Publish Or Perish: It’s Not Just For Academics

April 24, 2019

Would you mind peer reviewing a paper I wrote recently?

Sure, what’s the topic?

Income Inequality.

Send it over.

My friend is not a professor. He’s also not a paid researcher. He’s an IT professional. You might wonder why an tech guy is writing a paper on economic theory.

Two reasons.

First, because he can. I’ve known him for years. His knowledge is extensive. Not only IT, but music, economics, climate science and political science.

But, there’s a more important reason. The internet has turned everyone into a potential author and publisher. And especially in the IT computer space, it’s important to have a “portfolio” online. It’s not a formal portfolio, of course.

Several years ago I went to work for a large non-profit organization here in Utah. It was a “career” position. People often stayed there until they retired. The company even had a pension. If I stayed for 20 years, I’d get 30% of my salary as a pension for the rest of my life. Added to the gold-standard health care plan, there was no reason to look elsewhere.

I settled. And then, five years in, they did layoffs. And my entire management chain was let go. Being the company they were, the severence package was very generous. However, I still needed to go get another job. And that’s when I realized the mistake I’d made.

I hadn’t published anything in years. In fact, if you did a google search for my name, you would find about Rodney Bliss, the real estate broker in Connecticut. You had to scroll down quite a ways to get to my first entry. Ironically, it was for a book I’d published years earlier when I worked for Microsoft.

So, I started to build my online resume again. One of the first things I did was start a blog. I remember the day that I took over the top search result for Rodney Bliss.

I’m reading a wonderful book right now, (aren’t I always reading a book?) It’s called “Make Bright The Arrows.” It’s a book about living with mental health issues. It’s written by my sister, Jennifer Bliss.

My older brother wrote a book called “Stealing the Show.” I’ve written a couple of technical books. Don’t bother looking for them. They were written on Microsoft Exchange 4.0 and WordPerfect 6.0. . .for DOS.

The point is that whatever your profession, whatever your area of study or expertise, the internet has given you an opportunity to write down some words and associate your name with them.

We can all be writers. And people should take advantage of the chance to say something, even if it’s a paper on Income Inequality.

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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(c) 2019 Rodney M Bliss, all rights reserved

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