I am disappointed with my progress. Despite fairly steady work, including some 3000 new words, the MMP is not done. It’s finicky work. I’m not satisfied with my original classification of the marginalia, done a couple of years ago, and I keep dithering about how many hands comment. For the last week or two, I’ve been working on ways to attack the problem: not even doing the analysis I think I need to do, but setting up materials so that I can do it. And I’m discouraged that I am still working on this project, because it has dragged on for a long time and I would like to be done with it.
What’s more, I’m getting anxious about this spring’s conference papers, and though I have carried on with the MMP, I’m not sure it’s the best use of my time. Sir John thinks I should be working on the Unexpected Book, because it’s a project that has got a lot of good feedback from the people who know about it, because it’s a book and he recognizes the importance of books for literature scholars, and because it was going so well through the summer and fall. I think he has a point (several points); but I also feel a bit sick about the idea of putting the MMP aside yet again.
Multi-tasking is really not my thing. It took me most of my life to figure this out, because academia encourages juggling projects: you start by taking several different courses at a time in college; later, you teach however many different preps you have, plus try to keep a research program going, plus attending to your service commitments. And I have to admit that I keep getting attracted by new ideas and want to wander off to play with the new shiny thing instead of concentrating on finishing the old drab one. I want, have been trying, to stop doing that, to put new ideas on a list and try to finish the old ones, but I still feel tangled up in unfinished work.
At any rate, the discouragement is a bigger problem than the work itself. I put off revising a syllabus and putting together my documents for annual review so I could concentrate on the MMP, and now those things are past due and I regret not having just done them sooner.
Oh well. Time to dig in and do those things I ought to have done, and get back to working on a set schedule, because that was incredibly helpful. I’m going to spend till the end of January fussing with the MMP to see if I can either get it done or at least leave it with a clear sense of what will have to be done when I come back to it.
Tell me something good! How are you doing with your writing projects? Feel free to post your achievements and goals even if you’re not on the list here.
Another Damned Medievalist: I am madly trying to get my classes together. And I have to write that book review.
Contingent Cassandra: the goal for the week is to complete a full, condensed draft of the article-in-revision, and also to complete some related correspondence (e.g. permissions letters). I think I’ll also have time for one session with the article-in-progress this week, just to stay acquainted.
Elizabeth Anne Mitchell: I think my goal this spring semester is to triage the dissertation: contact my readers, send them some chapters. Oh, and move mid-semester.
Good Enough Woman: By next Monday, I hope to have the 12 pages I promised.
Ink: If I can make it through this new chapter before Monday, I will have met my goals for break. . . .I have planned for this term to keep one scheduled block a week for this project.
Lost in Academe: the goal is 15-60 minutes of writing 4-5 times a week.
Matilda: Goal for next week: finishing the half of the rest of the encyclopaedia work; having at least two hours a day for my own research; writing at least 15 minutes a day.
Naked Philologist: still FINISH THE SECTION. I’m also going to try my hardest to do readings in the mornings and write in the afternoon.
Rented Life: I also added several more pages of notes to my journal so I’m in a bit of a loop. Type notes, cross of to-do list, write more notes, need to type said notes, it’s back on list.
Sapience: I don’t expect to be done by next week, but I might be close.
Sitzfleisch: My goal: again, to meet my 14.5 hours. With the long holiday weekend, I will have even more time, and I plan to have a complete draft of my proposal letter and my introduction done by next Tuesday evening.
Trapped in Canadia: This week’s goal – 500 words and writing for one hour a day
Zcat abroad: write at least 500 words a day.