Wednesday, April 09, 2008


I'm pondering on the next project that I'm hoping to work on. I feel it's time for me to get immersed in a larger scale project (which will hopefully turn into a book or something similar), but given the way my research leave has worked out (hurrah I am so glad that the research leave is happening), I'm only going to have 13 weeks to accomplish that, or at least get it underway. Not that I'm complaining.

So my options are:
Do I go down the narrative/health/new media route, and expand the work I've done on cancer blogs to look at other kinds of illnesses in the online and offline world?
Do I pursue a linguistically oriented study of online interactions (for example a study of communities of practice in Facebook, differentiated according to sociolinguistic variables?)
Do I try and blend the literary and linguistic background I have with new media studies?
Where does my interest in 'gender' fit with this?

The literary/linguistic blend is what I really wanted to do, focusing on how online interaction varies in web 2.0 and similar phenomenon, and how this results (or not) in new narratives genres, even tests what we understand 'narrative' to be at all. This would range from 'writerly' interaction on wiki novels through to the more conversational interchanges on blogs. But I'm worried that ultimately this will end up too inconsistent and methodologically variable to reach the audiences I want it to, or at least wouldn't be plausible for a funding bid, or end up as monograph.

Still mulling.



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