One year into my PhD project, I have finally left my desk in Göttingen and hundreds of hours of lit review behind, to start collecting some empirical data. For the next six months, I will be a participant observer at RMIT’s non/fictionLab, Melbourne, Australia. It took a lot of bureaucracy, diplomacy and, most importantly, patience. But now, I am finally here, thousands of miles away from my desk, colleagues, family and friends.
One month into my fieldwork and I am already exhausted by the amount of input I got exposed to. This is, of course, a good thing because it means my stay here is more than worth it in regard to my research interest. In fact, already the first week was so packed with information and introductions, it drowned my head in exciting confusion, while leaving my field diary empty and untouched (apart from arriving at this highly sophisticated headline):
Clearly, I did not have a clue where to start.
When I reached out to a fellow ethnographer her advice was simple but wise: Just start. So I decided to start by filming my first interview with Adrian Miles who is a New Media lecturer at RMIT and one of the key protagonists for this research.
In preperation for that, the first pages of my diary were gradually filling up…