Response to comments from two posts ago (leapfrog blogging)
Dear Noah, Bill and others,
I think I've written about this before, but it was before I started tagging on blogger and I don't have time to search for it. I'll tag this one for future reference.
To make a long story short, again, I applied for the K99. I got a good score. If you check the records, very few are awarded each year, a lot fewer than R01s by ~two orders of magnitude (compare ~35 K99s funded to ~3000 R01s per year).
I was told by several people that I would probably get it if I applied again. But when I spoke to my SRA, the excuse for why I didn't get the funding had nothing to do with the science and everything to do with politics. They don't write that in the reviews. And it's a lot harder to fix with minor revisions.
So yes, I have enough data, I do know how much you need, and no, I can't apply again for a K99. So I will have to wait, whether I want to or not, until I have a faculty position.
Having said that, Amazingly Patient Anonymous makes an interesting point about not applying ahead of time. Why not ride the system a little longer as a postdoc? Isn't that what most people do?
Isn't that one of the things that's wrong with the system? All the rotting postdocs not worth the (measley) salary they're paid to sit on their butts and surf e-bay all day? Some of the shit I see in lab would make you really, really thankful that your grad students are at least futzing with their protocols, because at least they're doing something.
For all your complaining about the idiot asshole female PI who ran your postdoc lab, you still got "three top teir [sic] papers", so she must have been pretty good, eh?
I know what you mean about going out and complaining all the time. I've done that. I'm over it. That's why I have the blog. This is my replacement for going out drinking whenever the urge hits me, whenever I get that feeling that I would rather black out or have a bullet in my head than try to rationalize why I'm still doing this. So, sorry if sometimes it's a giant wash of negativity. That's just how I feel a lot of the time. I try not to, but there's nowhere else I can do my work, so I'm stuck for now, until I finish and get what I want, or give up.
I'm not ready to give up yet. So for now, I blog.
My point is, I'm not that person who complains constantly, I'm really not. I don't have time or energy to sit around recounting the latest "You won't believe what X did this time" stories. I know because I work with people who do, and I nod and laugh and then go hide from them. I don't go for long lunches or coffee breaks because most of my peers are those people.
And I have stories worse than all of them put together, but they don't know that because I don't want to hear myself tell them. There are a LOT worse things than negative labs where people publish a lot of papers and then get jobs after only 3 years of postdoc .
Amazingly Patient Anonymous, don't take this as a bad thing, but I think you're one of the luckier ones, whether you realize it or not. And kudos on your 3 percentile grant. Somebody must have mentored you along the way, because nobody is born knowing how to write grants that get scores like that.