The WIU writing studies faculty got together this week to confirm our AY2008-9 course schedules and sketch out AY2009-10, giving me reason to think about sabbaticals. I’ll be eligible in AY2009-10. (WIU provides one semester of leave every seventh year.) My current plan:

  1. Take the whole year off. This may require borrowing some money, but I see that cost as a pittance compared to the rewards of the extra time.
  2. Get out of Macomb, at least during the school year. Summers around here are great, with Barefoot Gardens in full swing and Chicago a three hour train ride away. But come September, it’ll be time to hit the road.
  3. Write and read and hack like a madman. XSLT, ANT, and UCD, among other things. A secondary goal: get a few freelance technical writing and usability testing gigs. I need to refresh my examples, so to speak.

Like Debbie says, all this seems like fun to me. I don’t feel a pressing need to “unplug,” or goof off. Maybe it’s just that I see the opportunity to drop committee work and teaching for full-on focus on research as unplugging. Or maybe I squeeze in enough unplugging already, with my running and football obsessions, and Erin very good about helping me not spend 18 hours a day in front of the computer.

It all begins 5/15/2009. Only fourteen months away!

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