Inktober 2015

Here, in one big glob, are all my contributions for inktober 2015. Inktober is an activity where you try to draw and post an ink drawing per day. Sounded fun and so I swallowed my drawing-oriented imposter syndrome and started in.

I think it’s fun since it’s much more undirected and sketch-like than what I normally do for RedPen/BlackPen (though sometimes RPBP is that sketchy too).

Day 1: Sad squid- he has a different idea of what inktober might be about


Day 2: Power chords


Day 3. Shadows of my hand holding a red pen







Day 4. Night of the PARSER!



Day 5. My attempt at drawing a plastic bag on my desk. Turns out that it’s really *hard*


Day 6. My homage to the Little Prince. Maybe he’s not so alone out there after all.

Day 7. Frickin’ laser beams. A 5 minute sketch with no real purpose.






Day 8. A throwback Thursday: drawings I did 30 years ago. Not entirely certain my artistic skills have improved all that much since then 🙂

Day 9. The Busy-o-Meter

Day 10. Eastern Washington farm fields with weather. 2015_10_10_FarmFields

Day 11. Red/black spiral


Day 13. Inspiration!


Day 14. The new NIH biosketch format (geeky academic joke)



Day 15. Academic Halloween Costumes!


Day 19. Happy penguin!


Day 20. Silhouette of hills at sunset.


Day 21. SCIENCE!


Day 22. A tomato.


Day 23. Academic caution sign #12015_10_25_AcademicRejectionStation

Day 26. More Science Caution Signs from RedPen/BlackPen
ScienceCautionSignsScanDay 28. Finally one more Science Caution Sign, an update. I’m planning more by the way.


Day 30. Finishing up #inktober with a move to #Movember at the request of MovemberUK

Academic Halloween Costumes

It’s that time of year. You’ve been invited to a costume party and now must decide: what will you dress up as? Well, I’ve assembled some of the BEST Halloween costume ideas for overworked, stressed out, over thinking academics right here. If you have further suggestions please Tweet them with the hashtag #academiccostumes.



I’ve posted before about some of my organizational approaches (and attempts at it) but it can sometimes be impossible not to get overwhelmed and busy. Being busy on multiple tasks, with multiple deadlines can be a killer, but sometimes it crystallizes a resolve to move some of those items off your todo list and you increase your overall effectiveness (you know, less Twitter and blogging and comic-making and stuff). I’ve also seen people who seem to make it a part of their academic persona to be perpetually too busy. This seems to be considered a status symbol (often times mostly by the person being so busy). The key to busy-ness and keeping your head above water (and the seals at bay) is balance. Make sure to keep perspective about what you’re doing and know that often (maybe always) banging your head against the same task for hours on end is counterproductive.

Anyway, here’s a handy tool to help you assess your level of busy-ness, fresh from the RedPen/BlackPen labs.