Sometimes I wonder what the librarians must think of me based upon my book requests. I tend to frequent one of the smaller libraries on campus, and I have most of my requested materials delivered there. Today I needed some books on pornography to talk about how the gaze is functioning blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah,blah, blah, blah on onward….
I do wonder how they will respond when checking out titles such as Hard Core to me next week.
The dissertation work has gone well this week. I did submit my goal number of pages to my advisor on Monday night for our Tuesday meeting, so there are some positive updates in that realm. But before getting to those, there’s the matter of ‘other work’…..
Oh, other work! How you get in the way of things! I love you, but I spent far many more hours on you than I had anticipated would be required of me today!
Before getting down to the business of dissertation writing, I had to knock out a few changes to two documents and send those off this morning. They took a bit of time, but I was happy to make the changes and email those large files off to their recipients. Plus, it felt really good to cross those two items off of my to-do list. They had been lingering for a week and a half.
The third project had to do with an article and remedying some serious editorial cock-ups. I can’t even get into that whole story as it still makes me want to cry. In the grand fixing of all things broken the editor asked me to convert everything to APA. Truthfully I don’t even recall which citation style the document was originally written with at this point, but it is in something weird, and now it needs to be in APA.
APA is one of the few styles I don’t do. So in making changes I relied upon the Purdue OWL site. Purdue is the gold-standard among writing centers, and I’ve found the cite to be incredibly helpful when working with clients, so this is what I followed. Well color me confused when I got an email back telling me that what I had sent them was still not APA.
I don’t know what in the world is going on because I am a serious stickler for proper citations—MLA was beaten into me during 11th grade by Dr. Weiner. Still, I am more than willing to admit when I don’t know something (which I had already done), and to go find the resources to do it right. I checked and re-checked what I sent the editors, every period and comma was in the right place. So this article just ate up more than half of the day and it has me frazzled. I think it is time for a long break and breather before trying to get down to dissertation work today.
Today I will reach page 124! That is the goal. Last Monday evening I submitted a section of the chapter which concluded half way through page 114. The goal is 10 more pages than last week.
All told this is not a lot and I had already secretly hoped to be beyond 124, but somehow in all of my weekend planning I almost forgot about that whole big pile of grading….. Oh yes, the grading! And the lesson planning for the major lesson on the final research paper! I spent more than a whole day getting that stuff out of the way. I know, I know, such work comes with the territory, but I have been feeling like I need at least two of me as of late.
This week, however, I am optimistic. I think it has something to do with the day off on Thursday. When I remind myself that I only have to teach, see clients, and attend meetings one day this week, I somehow calm down and the chapter and progress on the chapter seem much more tenable. Granted that one day is one heck of a long day—I’m scheduled back to back from 8:30am until at least 8:30pm.
I guess I find myself wanting to write like I did during my exams. Those were a whirlwind 10 days of exhaustion, insanity, and productivity. I would really like to force that much productivity out of myself once again. Well see.
Despite some big life disruptions yesterday I managed to make some progress on the chapter – about two pages. The intro to it is nearly done… I think… and I have determined (with the help of my advisor) how this chapter will be structured. It is very different from the previous two and will probably be longer than the previous two (though hopefully not longer than them when combined). Right now it is looking like it will be broken down into 7 or 10 sections. Such sectioning will make it move fairly quickly, or so I’ve convinced myself.
I know that I won’t get anything done on it today—long day of teaching, tutoring, and meetings. So I will check in with all of you over the weekend to let you know how things are progressing.
This not about writing and attempting to have a life, but writing and those who already do have lives — kids, partners, extended family, etc.
I guess I take it for grated most days that my time is my own… well, not exactly. Much of my time is my own; the rest, however, is taken up by things that are still all about me—meetings about my work, teaching classes to fulfill requirements for my stipend, ditto on writing clients, attending functions that further my career, etc. I don’t think that this means I am a selfish, but I knew going into grad school that this part of my life was going to be me-centered, it had to be me-centered because this is a huge opportunity and a lot is on the line.
So because I had the opportunity to structure my life in a me-centered way, I am often impressed by my friends and colleagues who do/did not have the luxury of such a decision. A friend of mine has a fantastic family—his wife and kid are both great. The kid is just to smart and curious and awesome. So my heart completely sank when my friend called me to let me know that the kid was admitted to the hospital. I am fairly certain that things with the kid will be alright, and I am certainly doing all that I can to pick-up whatever slack at work I can for him so he can be with his son, but I just can’t imagine dealing with the demands of a committee, the work obligations, etc. when your priority needs to be your kid.
My friend is an amazing scholar and an even better dad, so my hats are off to all of you who are writing your dissertations while tending to your own life.
My desk is now clear of all job related documents. No copies of the gigantic spread sheet, no job announcements, no notes scribbled in odd places about various departments. Now it is all about the dissertation for the next month, so this means there will be plenty to write about. More later, for now it is time to find some notes I thought I left over there….. oops……