My blog has now been running for 18 weeks and I thought it would be a good time to once again take stock of progress. I have now posted 24 updates which is slightly less than I had hoped but I did have a break from writing while on vacation and during busy clinical weeks. My posts have been slightly less structured than I imagined but I am someone who finds it easier to write in bursts about things that I am currently interested in. I find it much harder to follow a predetermined list or structure. While that might make my blogs slightly more chaotic than some, hopefully it also makes it more diverse and interesting than others!
There have now been more than 2000 views of my blog and this allows some analysis of what people find interesting. The top areas of interest are those that I have posted under the flag of “Research Matters” and concern academic training and career development. This is very gratifying for me because it is one of my main areas of interest and an area of unmet need that I hoped my blog might fill. As a completely unexpected spin off I have been asked to write a book on the subject of academic research and career development, which I am considering.
The single most popular post has been “Alternative higher degrees for surgery trainees”. This details the distance learning programmes in surgery available from Edinburgh and other UK universities and I will probably write more on this area particularly since the University of Edinburgh and Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh are launching two new Masters programmes and are developing continuing professional development (CPD) modules for more experienced surgeons.
Perhaps more surprising was the level of interest in my post about “Meeting Maurice Wilkins”. I wrote about this brief event in my life after a purely chance conversation with someone about the discovery of DNA and I suppose is testament to the enduring fascination in Nobel Laureates and their lives.
I am delighted that my blog maintains an international appeal and has now been read by people in 60 countries. My map of the world is slowly filling in and reflects the international appeal of academic research and surgery as subjects.
I still have some fairly major gaps most notably China and a check on the website the great firewall of china suggests that my site is actually accessible from China. There are other gaps in South America and Africa. I will have to think of a way of making my writing more interesting or appealing to these major populations.
So I will keep going for the time being and hopefully some of my opinions and views will continue to have some interest to my readership.