Friday, June 29, 2007

Date & chapter shifting

The more I read about Rogerian rhetoric, the more I think it belongs in my lit review, not my invitational rhetoric chapter. So I'm going to put the inv rhet chapter aside and focus on the lit review. I've moved up my deadline for that. I'm now hoping to have a draft of the article AND a draft of the lit review by July 31st. I've one more book that I want to look at for the Rogerian stuff but our library doesn't have it and it's $40 (used) at amazon, so I interlibrary loaned it. I don't want to wait on that, though. I think I know enough to start writing that section. I can revise or tinker with it when I get my hands on that book. Right now I think I just need to start.

Well, probably tomorrow. I have a few other things I need to take care of today.

I did, however, write a draft of my teaching philosophy the other day and while it's really rough and I'll probably start over, it's at least a start.

So, new goals for June/July:

June: Finish reading materials on Rogerian rhetoric (pretty much done)
July 31: Very rough draft of lit review
Very rough draft of article

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

De lurking

Tomorrow I'm driving from Toronto across the border to my campus, and the next day I'm having the oral defense of my field examination.

The exams were scheduled a few weeks later than I wanted. My wheels spinning, I jumped into proposal writing and unblocked a huge clog in my brain. Even my husband started thinking more clearly! I'm excited about the work I'm about to start and glad to have a place to share it.

I'm eager to continue the momentum I've gathered when my exams are finally over, so I've joined a writing club, started a blog and joined DBC. All the work I do is long-distance, in absentia, gypsy style like the example set by my mentors and most of my peers. I enjoy a pretty great community of virtual support, but I seek face time mostly at the shoe museum in Toronto where I volunteer in my free time. I had the idea that it would be advantageous to stay in the practice of talking to people.

Thank for inviting me to join the blog. I'm doing a project about 18th c British literary inscription and graffiti (glass writing, epitaphs, stuff). I'm in the English Dept. and tend to ogle the Visual and Cultural Studies Dept. down the hall.

I really hope to get some feedback from someone in the know about ways to approach the topic of women writing and images of women writing. I need a good feminist methodology for one of my first chapters/conference papers. I'd be happy to exchange drafts in a few weeks with anyone whose writing might tip me off to the ins and outs of research about women writing.

So, that's me. Happy to meet all over you. Have a great summer and keep close to your fans.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Digging back in

I've been lurking here but not saying much. I've been busy, but it's been a scattered busy that spanned personal and professional things. I'm really happy to report that I finally found a working structure for my lit review-- thanks to some brainstorming and mindmapping. I've also done some reading and summarizing of items that need to go into the lit review.

My goal for myself right now is to keep working-- preferably in the library-- seeing that it's going to be 94 degrees here tomorrow. I'd like to have a rough draft of the lit review done by July 16th.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

June goals: first follow up

Being accountable is a two-edged sword . . . it's good as it will keep me motivated and not appear to be such a slacker in front of you wonderful people. On the other hand, it's a challenge as it adds some pressure to actually get some work done. I always seem to have lofty goals that I don't meet. I do need to work at adjusting my goals to a more manageable level-- I won't, for example, be able to complete the dissertation by Saturday afternoon. Sunday night? Maybe . . . not.

Over the past few days I had good intentions, and I did get some work done. But I have to keep reminding myself how much of a process this dissertation work happens to be. It won't get done overnight even if I think I can do it. The past few days I did do some revision of chapter #1, and I began a short narrative about a student and work he did in my class the first year I taught the ICW course. This is good. I also read a book, posted a blog entry about the disparity in teachers' salaries between those who work in predominantly white schools and those who work in non-white [urban] schools (this actually does relate to the diss in that underpaid and inexperienced teachers are often the ones teaching in urban areas-- with students who need the most experienced teachers), and I spoke with academic advisers who see the broad range of student abilities as students enter the academy (full-time student orientation goes on all summer at my Uni). So while I didn't write all the time, I did get work done.

Tomorrow? I'll do more of the same, but I will focus more on writing. I'd like to have a completed draft of chapter 1 done by the end of the day. I'll let you know how it goes.

Summer Goals

Good call, Billie. A little accountability is always useful. I'm going to post some goals here too. First, though, a good friend of mine just got back from doing the same thing in Daytona (AP grading, I mean. Not posting goals on DBC). I wonder if you two ran into each other. So weird.

My husband and I just got back from visiting friends in Pennsylvania and Maryland. We were gone for a week -- a much needed but now panic-inducing vacation. So it's back to work.

Goals for June:
Today I have to do all of the copyedits for the collection of student writing that I, well, edit. I have to send that back to the publisher (a printed camera-ready copy) tomorrow morning.

I'll finish a very rough draft of my invitational rhetoric chapter by July 1st. It's mostly done. I just need to read a bit more and then write a small section on Rogerian rhetoric.

I'll have a rough draft of an article done by July 31st.

I'll have a full rough draft of my lit review done by August 14th. I'll also have a second draft of my article by that same date.

I think I'm going to head back home for ten days for my dad's 70th birthday, but I'd also like to have another full chapter draft done before the job list comes out.

I'm not completely sure it's do-able, but these are my goals for the summer.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

How's Everyone Doing? Goals for the June?

Wow, it's been almost two weeks since anyone's posted here. How are you all doing? Dissertating? Researching? Vacationing? Procrastinating?

Me? I was going at a good clip until I left for Florida and read 1400 AP Language exams. (A longer post coming at P-n-P tomorrow.) That's right: 1,400 essays. In seven days. The ol' brain cells stopped working each day at 4:45 and I was unable to write, read, think. I walked along the beautiful Daytona Beach shore . . . took some pictures . . . and slept. But I'm home, a little more rested, and ready to get back to work on the dissertation.

I am in dire need of some accountability, so I will make some smallish goals here and will post my results at the end of the day. So tomorrow (Wednesday), I will move back to the Introduction . . . incorporate some feedback I received from a colleague, meet another reader for lunch and receive her comments, and revise as much as I can at this stage. I will also begin a little section for another chapter -- a narrative about a particular student athlete. Since I just read those (largely very poor) AP exams, I'm in the mode of reading student work. I have a sense of comparison now-- between what those students were able to write and what my student was able to write. Yes, I know the contexts are very different and the students were (probably) very different, but it is writing . . . and I think I've got something to say about it all.

What are your goals for the latter half of June? Anything we can help you do?

Monday, June 4, 2007

Anyone Want to Exchange Drafts?

This week I will finalize what I think is my introduction, and I'll send it to a few readers (my writing group and JK, as they are local). Anyone else want in on the fun? Of course we can use this blog to support each other, but perhaps we can support each other in a more tangible way. I'm happy to send my stuff out if anyone would be willing to read and comment. I'd do the same for you. Any question or comments? Please bring 'em on!

A Few Hints and Tricks

Mornin' all!

Over the weekend, I really pushed myself to write. This is key as I tend to "edit" and not "write." As you know, there is a difference. I found a couple of strategies that really helped. I don't remember where I read these (or I'd link to them), but are a few I found:

  • I made myself write (without stopping) until I had reached 500 words, and I did this several time throughout the day. These short writing bursts kept me from editing and getting stumped on a 2nd or 3rd sentence, and it allowed me, by the end of the day, to have about 3,000 words written. I found that once I started to write-- and not stop myself to edit-- I could produce work that was fairly decent. I can edit it today, but at least I got something down on paper.

  • I found a nifty little online timer. This is a free download. I can set this timer for 1 minute or 5 minutes or 10 minutes (or whatever), and I have to type until the alarm goes off. A kitchen timer would do the same thing, but kitchen timers make noise, and to me that noise is distracting. The online time is quiet and runs in the background.

  • Lastly, the work I do on my bibliography (in EndNote), the mindmaps I make to help me visualize my data, and research and reading "count" in terms of working on the dissertation. Working doesn't equal (only) writing. So I'm encouraging myself.
What hints and tricks do you have that you'd like to share with the rest of us?