Why I Haven’t Blogged in a Long, Long Time

jr

I haven’t blogged on my own website in seven months. Seven months! In the world of writing, that’s almost criminal.

The truth is, I haven’t spent much time blogging on this site since I launched it in 2013. My heart has taken me in other directions.

Not long after the launch of jrjamison.com, Kelsey and I founded The Facing Project and I shifted much of my time to developing the organization (including blogging over there). Then in 2014 I became Interim Executive Director of Indiana Campus Compact (while maintaining my role as Associate Director), and in the spring of 2015 I officially became the Executive Director. That summer, I also agreed to join the Editorial Board for the International Journal of Research on Service-Learning and Community Engagement. All exciting things for sure, and, honestly, I find each of them more interesting than my personal blogging about community engagement in higher education.

Another truth is I likely won’t blog on this site much in the coming months because all of the above is growing.

The Facing Project has spread like wild fire and there are now over 100 chapters of the organization in communities across the country (almost 60 of which have come on board just in the last few months!). That’s keeping Kelsey and me pretty busy. Indiana Campus Compact continues to expand the work we’re doing with our partner campuses, most namely around assessment and student engagement, and I’m now co-hosting a national podcast through the Campus Compact headquarters in Boston called The Compact Nation Podcast. Actually, Episode 1 will be released tomorrow!

But another thing that will keep me from blogging on this site . . . drum roll, please . . .

I’m writing a book.

When I’m not doing all of the above, I will spend my time bringing the rest of the #drivingwithdave experience to life into a full-length book. If you’re thinking, What the hell is #drivingwithdave?, I took a trip with my dad this past summer to rural Missouri for his 55-year class reunion and live tweeted and Facebook posted the entire trip.

The five days together was more than a trip for the reunion, it was time to bond with my dad: He, a straight good ole boy from rural Missouri who supports Trump, and, me, a gay liberal who likes my craft beer. We hadn’t spent that much time together since we made the same trek in 1994. Much had changed between us since that time, but the trip made me realize the distance I thought was between us really isn’t that far. And I can’t help but think that’s where I hope we get as a nation with our own divides—if we just spent time finding our common ground. Side note: Don’t get excited my conservative friends; there’s no way in hell I’m voting for Trump.

So we’ll see where this goes. I’ve devoted three Saturday mornings thus far to writing and I have just shy of 10,000 words. Just 70,000 more to go. My goal is to shop this to agents by this spring. Wish me luck! Now that it’s out in the open, I’ve got to finish this thing.

In the meantime, if you’re interested in my work continue to follow The Facing Project as the 60 new projects unfold over the next eight months, watch the growth of Indiana Campus Compact over the next year, and tune in to The Compact Nation Podcast the first Wednesday of each month.

And buy my book when it comes out!


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