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08/10/2022

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anon

I agree, just keep sending things out. The process can take a long time (way too long, as we all know), and you'll probably end up being surprised at how many new things you manage to write in that time.

Just to add a thought that hasn't been added above yet, I'll also say that looking back over the last few years of my record, there were years where things occasionally went really fast, and years where I made very slow progress. But this isn't really reflected by the publication dates on my papers, because some journals take forever to put things into print. So even if there is some unsteadiness in your rate of publication, this part of the system sort of irons it out.

Early Career Conference Invitee

Two thoughts came immediately to mind here, one probably more helpful than the other:

1. Before reading Marcus's further comments, I thought, "If you aren't in a rush, then aim high! If one of these possible papers could be *really* good, try submitting to an excellent journal that you wouldn't otherwise bother with because they take too long". After reading Marcus's comments, maybe that isn't the best idea. If excellent publications scare off teaching jobs, you'll want to be careful. On the other hand, if you feel like it would be really meaningful to you to just once, get that really good publication, now might not be a bad time to go for it (if you feel like the work merits it).

2. On the "well drying up" concern, I understand that, and have definitely felt it before. But, my experience has continued to be that ideas come, and not just out of no where, but they come from continuing to publish and engage in the discipline. Recently I was invited to a really great small conference. I asked basically how lowly early career me was invited, and was told that sometimes the organizer just runs across a cool paper and reaches out. I don't know my specific invite story, but publishing more gets more people to engage with your work, it gets you better known, it might get you invited to submit to a special issue or to a conference, and it's from those interactions that I often find more ideas. I've found coauthors that way, I've had ideas spun off from parts of my views that I didn't think much of, but others did, and so on. So, I'm a vote for publish and trust that doing so will springboard you into further engagement in the field and new ideas because of it.

Assistant Professor

Agreed with all the other comments encouraging moving forward with publication submissions that are ready to go now. One other reason that wasn't mentioned, but is related to the long lag time for publications, is that if you do get a job, having stuff already in the pipeline with journals during that first year when adjusting to a new role, new teaching preps, new locale, new responsibilities, etc. can be such a relief. You end up getting to have new work come out even if you aren't able to make scholarship a priority for some period of time as you get acclimated to a new gig.

MindLang

I totally get wanting a teaching-oriented job as opposed to a research-oriented job. But I think it is unwise to start curating your cv for a particular kind of job too soon.

In reality, the teaching/research school distinction admits of many borderline cases. Enough that it is probably an unhelpful dichotomy. To see what I mean, here's the profile of an institution at which I previously worked: R1, 2/2, graduate courses, TAs for big undergrad classes. At first glance, this might sound like a research job! But now consider that you've already met the requirements for tenure at this institution with 5 publications, that the school has an access mission and an associated 80% acceptance rate, that there is no dissertation advising, and that almost none of the faculty are research active. Now it looks more like a teaching job, albeit one with a lighter load.

I assume that you prefer a teaching-oriented job because of the values and expectations that go along with it. Presumably those values and expectations don't require that you're teaching a 4/4. As such, I think you'll find that there are a lot of jobs at institutions that are borderline cases for the teaching/research distinction. In curating your cv in advance, you don't want to count yourself out at these jobs. Having 7 papers or whatever might be what gets you in the door at such an institution, even if you don't have live your professional life there as if it were a research job.

And I think you'll be surprised about how hard it is to run dry. If only; many of us could finally get a break then. But, no. The ideas will keep coming whether you want them to or not.


placement person

FWIW, as a placement director at a program with good placement into teaching and mixed-focused schools (and almost no placement into research-focused), I am not convinced Marcus' experience generalizes. My students are still getting interviews and jobs without a single publication sometimes, and also often with just 1 or 2. I agree, however, that publishing in very fancy journals can scare places off (though I actually think that might only hold for the really elite journals, and YMMV). I don't have a view about whether the OP should submit everything, but I don't think it would be ludicrous to hold things back--though this also depends on timing on your CV. No one likes to see a bunch of publications and then multiple years of zero publications.

Chasing Waterfalls

One more point worth considering w/r/t sitting on written papers: you might get scooped! There are a lot of people writing on most topics in philosophy these days, and, at least speaking from personal experience, most ideas (even great ones) are ones that many different scholars might eventually independently arrive upon.

Also, topics that are interesting/hot today might be much less so in a couple years. Strike while the iron is hot!

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