Permanent eye twitch.

March 2, 2009

While I have returned to reading mode (I will finish reading a book today!  Look at that!), I managed to submit an article to a competitive journal last week.  It is the first time I have submitted an article to a competitive (in tenure review speak: “top-tier”/”high impact”/”flagship”/”highly selective”) journal.  OK, so Rottweiler is a late bloomer.  There is nothing I can do except get rolling on the next thing: articles, book manuscript.  And yet… I keep logging into the submission site and checking to see if comments have appeared.  This is completely illogical as nothing is bound to show up for months to come.

In the mean time, I have developed a wicked left eye twitch.  It just won’t stop.  How can I trick myself into forgetting about this article and not investing all of my hopes, dreams and fears in its fate?  (Most likely to be a rejection and some tough but, one hopes, helpful critical feedback).  Help!  My eye is so twitchy it won’t let me move on to my next project. Something tells me that if I care this much, and in this very physical way, I will be not long for the academic world.


3 Responses to “Permanent eye twitch.”

  1. AJK said

    You know, my prof gave a good piece of advice which was to send out multiple articles, and if possible, the same article to multiple journals so there’s always something out and no one rejection means that much…

  2. Prof. Bulldog said

    Hallo Rottweiler! Bulldog here. I had a similar eye twitch for much of the summer. I mean, how could you not be physically feeling the effects of such emotional investment. I mean, I don’t even think I want to stay in academia and I stress over every article I send out or even propose for a conference.

    IMHO, there are a couple of things you can do:
    1. Recognize that this gets a smidge easier with repetition. Move on to the next project in the hopes that sending it out someday will decrease the future eye twitch.
    2. Do things that help you release the physical stress–yoga, cardio, massage, etc. Your other muscles are probably a little tense, too.
    3. Do not check the submissions site every day. If you must check regularly, make it a standing appointment, like one would with therapy or allergy shots. “I will check once a week, on Thursdays at 3 PM.” It’s still crazy-making, but at least off-limits for much of the week.

    Some other unsolicited advice. I disagree with AJK on the sending the piece out to multiple journals. Most of the journals in my field have a policy against that. I know LSR does. But yeah, if you can get something different in the hopper at another journal, sure. Of course, Prof. Bulldog’s significant other always has multiple things out. He’s annoying that way.

  3. Zoid said

    My advice is to eat bananas – for some reason, a potassium deficiency can result in muscle spasms in the eye-lids and thighs!

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