Here we are again, Monday morning (or maybe Sunday night), planning for the week to come.  Maybe you’re finally getting geared up for the summer.  Maybe your plans have changed.  Maybe you’re ready to make some change in your schedule, to do more of what’s helping you work or face that something isn’t going so well.

This week, how will you advance your project?

Allan Wilson (formerly known as kiwi2)
write and submit Cox 1
polish dissertation for September defense
write review article
Contingent Cassandra
submit Article J
Dame Eleanor Hull
complete rough translation of all my assigned chunks of Translation Project
Dr. Virago
finish draft of Slow Perk article
Elizabeth Anne Mitchell
finish Article B
finish MCA
Heu Mihi
research, plan, and outline the first chapter of Projected Book
finish MS for Revised Book Project (RBP)
hypatia cade
complete Grant Article
finish Article RT
John Spence
edit, introduce, translate short medieval text and submit it for review.
submit Article H
combine two conference papers into one article
revise article draft for publication
contain the Many-headed Monster: about 20pp more of Head 4, ~15 pages introduction, groom the hair on Heads 1, 2, and 3.
clone Small Paper from Big Paper and submit both
write Conference Paper B
finish/polish draft of Cutting Edge Research Book (CERB)
finish Book Spinoff article
Pym Fan
turn WGS Project into finished essay
4 chapters of Reincarnation Book (fiction)
Revise and resubmit Floyd
revise paper for submission as article
complete draft of Methods Paper
What Now?
Finish one chapter of book project
Design Fancyproject; write up grant application for Fancyproject
finish article for Big Name Journal
Paper on the darker side of mestizaje
produce a detailed plan for Book Two

49 thoughts on “Maygust 2013 writing group, week 5

  1. Didn’t quite get the process goal this week– by Thursday I was so sick that I decided I would have to take Friday off and sleep all day if I wanted to ever get better. By Saturday I’d gotten allergies on top of the cold. Now the allergies are still here but the cold is thankfully gone. I hope the air is clear at work because it is so difficult to manage RAs (for the other projects) from home even with the air filter.

    Small paper is almost done. I need a dynamic closing sentence, need some people to read through it… and I’ve been going through the editor’s and reviewers comments again and finding more things I should probably address or need to check on (religion? oh yeah, I had an RA get me that info…where was it…). A few more citations to add. And so on.

    Another process goal this week: at least 30 min work per day of the finishing up sort, then email people about emailing people about the second paper. (Do I email the editor who has seen me before but probably can’t attach my name to my face, or the associate editor that I know better?) And start cranking through differences with the second paper.

    I probably won’t send off the first tiny paper this week, but I will send it to people to read and give me feedback. It is tiny (far shorter than my responses to the reviewers…) so I don’t think it will be too much of a hardship for folks. I should think about who owes me a read-through…

    1. E-mail the associate editor who knows you better. Sorry about the allergies, but glad you’re a bit better, and congratulations on getting the Tiny Paper almost ready to go. (Tiny things are always cuter because they are Tiny!)

  2. This week I was only supposed to touch work daily.

    I did that but also did a fair amount of research and thinking, added over 100 words and revised what I had. So in 4 weeks I have 800 words. Ought to step it up but I am enjoying the slow and steady.

    What is not working: I am neglecting other things. I think this paper is officially going and I can stop being so chaotic about everything else, Goal this week is to touch work MTW, but make time for everything else as well. Th-S I am on vacation.

    1. 80 words Monday.
      279 Tuesday and counting. This is the first day I have produced to my goal of 250 and I am exceeding it.

      1. And: now, over 1400 words altogether on this piece. This is because I wrote a lot today and then put in another piece of writing that was in notes. This means I am catching up on my slow start but I must keep going, must start to lope eventually.

  3. My goal last week was to spend 2-3 hours in the archive to finish up one set of resources. I spent a little over an hour, but that was it — and probably it was unrealistic to expect more, since it was exam week followed by umpteen graduation events. Also, more Co-Author drama erupted unexpectedly (detailed on my blog), which sucked some time and energy out of the week; I’m getting really tired of this! But at least my hour in the archive was totally fun, which helps my commitment from last week to treat such research time as a reward.

    This week is the final faculty meetings and end-of-year stuff, so still busy-ish but definitely winding down. I have some group interviews scheduled for this project on Friday afternoon, so prepping and doing those is definitely the big goal for the week, as is trying to make the Co-Author drama go away for at least the summer.

  4. I finished collating the notes from my old plan, which I had thought would take a lot longer. Since I have many other things on the go, I’m going to take a week off this One Big Thing.

      1. Thanks! Current top other thing is a mind-numbingly boring task, so here’s to getting it finished!

  5. I didn’t get any article reading done at all as I took a few days completely off for a brief vacation in South Carolina. It was wonderfully refreshing. I did, however, write a 3 page memo from the 16 pages of notes I’ve taken from the readings so far. The memo was very helpful as it laid bare two directions this paper can take. I’m not sure which direction I want/should take and need to figure that out pretty soon. I’m hoping I can take one but still embed a little of the other. That usually doesn’t work for me so probably not.

    I’m going to go back to reading an undetermined amount of articles this week and see if I can think through the direction problem.

  6. I’m also going to do something a little different this week: focus on grooming, rather than the rough translation. So I aim to groom 1200 lines. This may be a stretch goal, as in the last bit I groomed, six lines took half an hour (pronoun trouble!), but let’s see how it goes. Three hundred lines on each of 4 days, probably in multiple stints interspersed with other tasks.

  7. I managed to work through a big chunk of the primary sources this past week, but visiting relatives slowed my pace. This week I will finish with those sources, read what I have and write a detailed outline. I have been working in the mornings, leaving the afternoons for “all else.” This actually seems to have worked. I feel like I have enough time for chores, errands, phone calls, e-mails etc., while still making progress on the article.

  8. Last week I was so busy and forgot to check-in. I made a plan for the week, but nothing I was able to achieve.

    Anyway, this week I am going to read another three important articles related to my paper: start to read primary source materials, hoping to find something.

    One thing I understood this week: when I am busy, I am busy. Do not sit up unnecessarily late trying to do something – you will only be too sleepy to do things the next day. I am going to make a habit to have regular sleeping time.

  9. As of last week, I now have a 21-page, 6223-word working draft of Slow Perk, and it now knows what it wants to be when it grows up. Huzzah! The rest of the summer will consist of going through the bits that still say “Add paragraphs on X, Y, and Z” or “Cite so-and-so on this” or “clarify theory/assumptions/background” and adding and revising those.

    This week I think I need to go through the article and simply plan/list what needs to be done. I’m going to do that, too, for my other, longer-term project, so that I get some work done on it this summer. And I need to re-configure my working schedule for the summer, to make better use of my time. So this week will be dedicated to *re*-planning things.

  10. So my goal last week was to
    1 make a list of action items for working through when I get back and
    2 read a new paper that came out last month that bears on my topic.

    I got through 1 and 2 actually even though I didn’t think I would with being gone for a conference. I also found out about another paper I should try to get my hands on that will improve my ability to motivate the paper for a clinical audience. I will ILL that today and hopefully get it quickly.

    My goal this week is to focus on process — 30 min of work a day on the paper. I think if I do that I should be able to tighten things up and refocus the intro/discussion in appropriate ways by the end of the week. I am a bit worried about that goal since today it seems unattainable and it’s possible that Jury Duty will interfere tomorrow. If I don’t get 30 min today and tomorrow I’ll fit in two 30 min stints later this week to catch up.

  11. I did not manage to do my two hours of work on cox1. I was just so damn busy! Of course, I could have found two hours somewhere in an evening or airport, but I felt really tired this week, and decided to preserve the remnants of my energy. It was also a short week here. I wondered, if I had had a specific goal whether I might have reached that (although I think not, on balance). I also thought, every day, about how I am going to structure the work from the last section (hybrid) that has octopused.

    Yesterday I decided I would write a timetable of tasks for the hybrid section . So, first up, make the list, and then timetable some sections in for this week. I have decided to draft high quality methods and results sections first. I aim to touch this work on two days, for however long I want.

  12. Last week’s goal: write up textual notes for 20 lines, tidy up paragraph.

    Accomplished: notes for 5 lines.

    Analysis: other commitments still taking up time … and I’ve not been using the bits of time I do have to best effect. I think I have a way round this for this week by shaking up my approach to how I write up the notes, and hope I can make a bit more progress this week.

    Next week’s goal: write up notes for 20 lines and tidy that paragraph!

  13. My goal was to revise the first two sections of chapter 2, and I am in the midst of revising the first. Adjusting to the long summer classes, and the class meetings every day of the week, was more draining than I had anticipated. Echoing Matilda, I tried to stay up late and write but realized I needed to sleep instead. I was also surprised that the first day back to writing was full of doubt and self-recrimination, but the next was spent with a gentler inner critic.

    I will take a smaller goal this week and finish the revision to section 1.

    1. Long days with constant meeting are definitely going to be trying. I’m glad to hear that your inner critic backed off. If you have a day (or week) when you can’t believe in yourself, then believe in the project: it’s worthwhile, and you will do the best you can for it.

  14. I’m checking in late, because we celebrated Queens birthday yesterday and I didn’t set a foot in the office. My goal for last was to write the one page topic summary and contact more people as possible collaborators. I achieved both, even though just on the weekend. My other tasks during the week were too demanding to be left for later.
    Task for next week: write a long-term plan about my general research aims, which should be about 2-3 pages.

  15. Goal last week:
    ONE THING: Two writing hours per day, 1000 words a day.

    HOW I DID: Not that great. In fact, my week got messy such that I am actually not entirely sure how many days I spent part of this time. I can go back and look at my spreadsheet that I use for keeping track of the number of words I wrote, and I see that I wrote 1046 (yay!), 630 (ok), 627 (ok), 131 (uhoh), 0 (☹), 32 (still ☹), and 670. Not really hitting my goals. But I am refreshed and renewed and I vow to spend more time on this project than I have because I am committed to its completion.

    GOALS: Recommit to completion. Keep working at least 2 hours a day, 1000 words a day, but try to do more. Make a plan each morning for what I am going to do that day (key for me). Don’t get discouraged.

    1. But that is a lot of words, and good steady progress. It looks like you “touched work” even on a couple of days when you weren’t able to put a lot of time in, and worked on 6 days out of 7. Even God rested once a week. You wrote 2576 words in all, which achieves an average of 500 words a day if you were working 5 days a week: very respectable! It does underline what Elizabeth Anne Mitchell said about planning/working ahead when possible; sometimes front-loading a week is the best way to go. Carry on!

  16. Goal for last week: spend one substantial (c. 3-hour) session reacquainting myself with the J article, and planning the summer’s work.

    Accomplished: not really. I did do some thinking about the overall shape of the summer, and reluctantly concluded that now is not the best time to plunge back into the J article. I’ll need to fit it in later in the summer, or early in the fall, but, given the state it’s in, that’s doable, and other projects (non writing/research/academic ones, plus a July class) need to take precedence. So I won’t be checking in regularly, though I might drop in now and then to see how others are doing, and will check for signs of a fall group. Thanks again for hosting, DEH, and sorry not to be able to participate this summer.

  17. Wow, the weeks are just flying by. My goal for this week was to write two subsections. I wrote two and a half so I’m feeling virtuous.

    My next goal is another section – I’m sacrificing a fair bit of this week to travel and an administrative duty which will be convivial but will eat into my working time.

    Having a writing-intensive summer while house-training a new puppy continues to suck, though!

  18. Late check-in, sorry. I will not be doing anything active to move my work forward this week–we are going away for a few days and the remaining days are filled with other work. I will check in next week with a new goal. Good luck everyone.

  19. I’m on vacation, but I wanted to report my good news. My advisor returned both Arc and ER chapters, and my very rough conclusion draft. I got a thumbs up on Arc, a “keep going” on ER, and a “fine, but rework the first few paragraphs” on the conclusion. Good progress! And I’m still on schedule for the summer.

    I also managed to get the whole diss into one document and sent to my editor. I’ll have my work cut out for me next week! For now: margaritas and lazy kayaking.

  20. Last week’s goal: 4 hours of transcription.

    Accomplished: Three hours before succumbing to some icky disease that put me in the emergency room for 8 hours yesterday.

    This week’s goal: get two or three more hours of transcription as icky disease allows.

    My excursion to the ER proves the value of planning things ahead of time–had I not done three hours of work M-F, but waited for the wide-open weekend, I’d have gotten nothing done. I was going to say “food for thought,” but even thinking about food is icky. Something to contemplate.

  21. Made most of my goals (didn’t read much of M) and exceeded one (finished RB). This week, I have family visiting, so I don’t expect to get anything done–although it would be great if I wrote up my notes on RB.

  22. Late and still in limbo.

    The article I had in submission (from a couple of groups ago) has been accepted. This is enormously good news. It’s been *mumblemumblemumble* since I’ve had anything scholarly-historian published, and the very favorable reader reviews and minimal revisions are doing me a world of good confidencewise… I feel like I’ve still “got it,” and I feel that much legitimate as a scholar, something I’ve been needing. The revisions aren’t going to take me long at all, mostly I just need to read several books and do a small amount of sentence-level tweaking. And the books are things I’d need to be reading anyway if I wanted to go for a larger project, so it’s all good.

    That puts me in a weird position re this group, though. I don’t want to do the project I started with– it’s not working and I think needs to be set aside. I want to start work on the next project, which, now that this really core article is coming out, would be the next chapter in a… dare I say… book. I can’t commit to having that article written by the end of the summer, though, nor can I commit to having a book proposal done by the end of the summer. My summers just don’t look like “regular” academic summers, and there’s some other stuff (*cough*job market*cough*) that may make things unpredictable.

    If it’s all right, I’d like to use the weekly check in to help me “just keep swimming” toward the larger project. I work best if I write, even if it’s just free writing, while I read, because reading in some ways is harder for me than writing (I get distracted by all the other things I should be reading and have trouble focusing). If that’s OK, I’d like to set as my goals for the week: 1) finish book A and 2) begin book B.

    Sorry for the length as well as the lateness!

    1. Congratulations about the article. It is a wonderful boost to get something accepted- even if it is external validation!

      1. Actually, for my particular circumstances, external validation is EXTREMELY important right now. I’m not working as a professor and it can be hit or miss whether “real” faculty/scholars take me seriously as a scholar. I can believe I’m a scholar all I want, but like it or not, publication gives me something a lot more concrete to point to.

    2. Congratulations! That’s great news. We could say that your “just keep swimming” project is something like “substantial progress on a book chapter,” even if “progress” means “read a certain number of articles, take N pages of notes.”

    3. Even better then! I find myself in a similar situation, where every paper counts in terms of how others assess quality as a scholar. Go girl!

  23. Sorry for the v. late check-in. Not sure what happened to last week. Except for a little noodling, poor WGS mostly got pushed aside by other tasks. So for THIS week: more consistent touching of the project every day (or so), more noodling, and more thinking about a structure for this essay.

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