Looking Forward

I’ve decided to follow my passion for history and make it a career. For the last three years, I worked for a management consulting firm in Moncton, New Brunswick. I learned a lot there, especially the need to activate one’s purpose motive, and that’s what I want to do. My overall goal is to land a job at one of Canada’s military museums, historical societies, or heritage institutions.

My first step on this journey is as a candidate in the University of Western Ontario’s Graduate Studies program in Public History. While I already have a research-based Master of Arts, I was particularly attracted to this program’s practical agenda. This is one of the reasons I’m writing this new blog post. Part of the course requirements for our Digital Public History class – History 9808A – is to maintain a blog to spark class discussions, to serve as a project log, to act as an online presence for future employers, and to get comfortable with writing in public.

I’ve maintained my blog on this website for over three years now, and I wrote the blog at Symplicity Designs, but I’m still a work-in-progress when it comes to public writing. The work I do in History 9808A and my other courses in the program will go a long way to preparing me for a career in the public history field.

I’m excited about Digital Public History in particular because it will give me and my classmates a forum to practice digital history skills and to make our work public. Personally, I’m looking forward to designing and producing a podcast. I’ve been on a podcast as a guest before (check out this previous post on my interview with Angus Wallace and WW2 Podcast) and I’m a regular listener to various other history podcasts. I’ll encourage my classmates to check them out at the links below:

History 9808A wraps up later this fall with an Independent Project meant to give us time to explore an application in digital history. This leads me to what I want to accomplish this term. By December, I would like to have a live website for promoting my first book. Eagles over Husky will be published sometime in Q1 2018 by Helion and Company, based in the United Kingdom. I’ve already bought the domain EaglesoverHusky.com and intend to use http://patrickmdennis.com/ and https://markmanson.net/ as inspiration for my website. I will probably focus more on the book than on myself the author.

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A backup idea (and something I’ve already begun) is to design an On This Date in History (#OTDH) Twitter campaign to promote my book. This campaign will be modelled on Twitter accounts such as @BofB1940, @RAAFvictoryroll, and @RealTimeWWII. I’ll be using the Twitter handle @EaglesoverHusky (already active) to execute the campaign.

The next eight months of coursework (followed by a four-month internship) look to be both some of the most challenging and exciting in my career as an historian. I look forward to sharing my trials, tribulations, successes, and achievements with you over the next 12 months.

“Danger gathers upon our path. We cannot afford – and have no right – to look back. We must look forward.” – Winston Churchill, 10 December 1936

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11 thoughts on “Looking Forward

  1. Thank you for the podcast suggestions, I will definitely listen to them over the course of the next few weeks. It is also really interesting that you can use the projects in Digital History as a way to promote your book (which I am also looking forward to reading). Also, if you like the #OTDH tags, the past Public History students had one about the London during the First World War. I believe they’re at @LndOntWWI. It usually posts every few days.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Alex, I think it is so awesome that you have this online archive of all your thoughts, historical findings, book reviews, and more from the past three years. You may not have been “officially” working in public history, but through this blog you have still been engaging in the field. I can’t wait to see how you use digital techniques to promote your book. It’s an exciting time, that’s for sure!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s pretty awesome that digital history is something you’ve already been working on, whether you realized it or not! Congratulations again on the book, and I have no doubt that you’ll have your site up and running in no time!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great stuff, Alex! We seem to have very similar historical interests and I look forward to hearing more about your research. Thanks for including this list of podcasts, they seem like ones I’d like and I’m excited to be doing more with that medium! Can’t wait to see how you go about promoting the book and engaging with your readers.

    Liked by 1 person

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