You have a voice

January 30, 2013

Chief Optometric Editor Ernie Bowling extends an offer to News Flash and Optometry Times readers.

 

By Ernest L. Bowling, OD, FAAOChief Optometric Editor

One of the great things about our profession is the varied locations where we all practice. Whether it be a solo or group private practice, Veteran’s Administration center, academic setting, referral center, corporate setting, Indian Health Service, or industry, we all have seen a lot and have experiences to share. I'd like to invite you to share those with our readers.

Many years ago, back when I had hair, I used to read with wonder articles in the professional journals and think, “Gosh, wouldn't it be great if I could do that?" Now, here some 20 years later, I do get to do that. And it's all because some people who didn't know me from Adam, but who've since become my dearest friends, took a chance on me and my writing.  Initially I thought, “There's no way I can do that. I don't have the intelligence of these people that I so looked up to. Gosh, what would I say?”

But over time, I found that I did have a voice. And so do you. You have a unique perspective and unique experiences in what you do every day. I'd be interested in hearing about it, and I'm sure your colleagues would as well. Do you have an interesting case that you’d like to share? Have you had a particular practice management problem that you had to deal with and think others can learn from? I’m a firm believer in not reinventing the wheel. I also firmly believe that no matter what I have experienced in my career, no matter how alone I may have thought I was-I found that whatever it is, someone has gone through that exact same experience before, and is just waiting for someone to ask how he or she handled it !

Writing is not easy. I've had experienced lecturers tell me that they'd much rather prepare a presentation than prepare a written manuscript. Sitting down to a blank piece of paper requires a lot of focus and discipline. The process can be frustrating at times. Yet a manuscript published in a professional journal reaches so many more people than a single lecture. And it is a real blast when one of your colleagues tells you by e-mail or in person that he read your article and got something from it.

So, got an idea you'd like to share? I'd love to hear from you. I’d really enjoy giving someone the opportunity the editor in chief of this journal gave me years ago...