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How do they do it?

The title of this post is referring to those academic bloggers who seemingly manage to hold down a fulltime job, blog incessantly, AND read about 300 books a year!  Some of them seem to be able to do all this whilst also watching incredible amounts of TV and/or raising a family.  Do these people have more hours in the day than the rest of us or are their brains just super processors? (I wont link to any of these guys, because if you don't know who they are they would just make you sick, and if you do know who they are, then you know, don't you!?)

Personally, I could read a couple of books a week, if i had nothing else to do, but with work and family and church commitments i struggle to get through even short books in a month.  Obviously I have to read a lot of books for my research, but that tends to take the form of "mining" whereby i judge use the contents or index to find the relevant stuff.  I find it very frustrating but there simply isn't time to read books all the way through.  I can usually blog about 3 times a week, if i am being a good boy and working on my research, if not then I get more blogging done.

I have tried tricks like reading in the evening, but then i don't sleep cos my brain is going round, and anyway life is too short to work all day.  I have come to the conclusion that I just need to skim read everything, but that seems a bit of an insult to the authors who laboured over all these books, not to mention academicaly dangerous as the hances of misrepresenting an author increase in proportion to the amount of the work that you skim.

The only solace I do take is that previously prolific bloggers/readers Ben Myers and Chris Tilling have slowed down hugely since getting teaching jobs, which leads me to suspect they were previously underemployed ;-).  Not that that works for all the uber-bloggers but it does mean that perhaps if i didn't have small kids and a job i might be getting more blogging/reading done than I am . . . or maybe I would just watch more TV?

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  1. Hear! Hear! I wonder the same thing, Jonathan. :D

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