Thursday, October 11, 2007

Accountability, Ashmountability

Hello Campers,

I'm not sure if I'm needing better time management, more time, or maybe a kick in the pants, but I'm having an awful time getting much of anything done. I get things started, and move everything around, but then I realize I have 5 other things to think about or do. So, perhaps my problem is focus. Luckily, there are lots of job application deadlines coming up, so I think I should be getting in gear soon (she says hopefully). There are a few things that I really need to work on:

  • Writing sample/mss/chapter for dissertation--Gee, I do have an Anne Lamont first draft ("shitty"), but it needs major revision, and I feel a little suspicious I should revisit my coding scheme, too.

  • Complete more job applications. I can't believe how many jobs have complex online submission systems that ask for details of all jobs--and there are lots of jobs in my past. That sucks a ton of time up, I'm finding.

  • Writing Samples for my Learning Community. I'm part of a group re-visioning junior-level comp classes, and I'm completing the assignments (they all involve technology, and I seem to be the only wired person in the group).

  • Dissertation abstract and teaching philosophy. Again, I do have drafts, but I'm not thrilled yet.

Now, thanks to Abby and Billie, I feel like I can feel productive, too, or at least feel shame. I will complete the writing sample by Monday, Oct. 15, and Activity 1 for my LC by tomorrow, the 12th, and Activity 2 by the 16th. And I'll finally put those abstracts and stuff away soon!

As a head check, could those of you going on the job market this year give me an idea of how many jobs you plan to apply for? I'm the only person at this stage at my institution, and my program's pretty new, so I'm not sure what a reasonable range is. But please, please, don't say 100+. :-)

Have a great weekend, and week. I'll keep you all updated on the progress.


Billie said...

Way to go, Mary Beth! The "shitty first draft" is such a great essay, and it's such a great way to look at writing. Just get words on paper . . . and you can go back later and make them pretty. :-)

Abby said...

I concur with Billie. Whatever you can get done at this stage is good work. My own writing sample? Yeah, it just isn't going to happen before surgery. So hopefully I'll be able to get it together by the deadlines. If not, some places will just have to get a chapter draft that's pretty solid, but not stellar.

As for job apps: right now I'm planning on 60-70, but that number could grow as the job list is updated. Or it could shrink as I run short of time, patience, or sanity. I'm doing a national search and casting a wide net. But friends of mine last year applied to more like 10-20. They were doing local searches.

I say -- and I have no authority for this -- apply for any job you can see yourself doing, any job that looks interesting to you. I'm trying not to apply to places that aren't places I want to live or jobs that just don't seem to fit what I can or want to do.

That's my plan, and I'm sticking to it.

PS. I hate the online application stuff, too. You think it's going to be quick, but it is SO not.

kayak kid said...

My search is a regional one and right now I think the list stands at about 30 schools (plus a few postdocs).

mary beth said...

Thanks for your encouragement, and your feedback on jobs. I've finished another 10 apps today, and the teaching philosophy is in good shape--even sent it out. Tomorrow, it's back to the writing sample.

Abby, I'm amazed you're able to get so much accomplished as you prepare for surgery, especially making progress on the diss too.

I'm also applying nation-wide. There are only two major requirements of the jobs now: they need to be in North America, and not in Idaho (my mom and step-father just boughy land there to build a house, and I don't want to be working on their house for the next 5 years). Right now, I found about 80 jobs that I'd like, but time will probably en up being an important factor in what actually gets done.

Good luck to all of you as you work on chapters, applications, and everything else.