In last week’s comments, a few people (including me) wondered about how others turn a task like “work on revision” into smaller, quantifiable tasks. And once you have smaller, quantifiable tasks, how do you keep from being overwhelmed by what seems to be a never ending to-do list? humming42 writes,
“What I find is that there are 37 things on my to do list when I get up in the morning. And at the end of the day, there’s the dreadful ritual of changing 20 “todays” to “tomorrows,” leaving me feeling like I got little done, and that the next day will just be overwhelming. I removed all the dates [deadlines in a task list program], and now feel unmoored in a way that leaves me anxious about how to prioritize and how to avoid letting things go.”
So what advice do you have? What works for you?
I encourage you to comment on others’ comments as well, if you get a chance.
A reminder of the check-in format:
- Goal: The past week’s goals
- Accomplished: What you accomplished during the week
- Analysis: An analysis of what worked/what didn’t
- Next Goal: The next week’s goals
- Next Check In (optional): Your next check in date, if you’re planning to miss any number of weeks
Amstr [complete dissertation]: Draft of Ch. 3 to writing partner (in whatever state it’s in; hopefully complete, if poor); Intro w/ changes to secondary advisor; email third committee member (to let her know I’ll be finishing soon)
Aria [something ??]: read the rest of the secondary source that I’m somewhat using to structure my paper, and some other sources that have come in through Interlibrary Loan
Becky [journal article]: ??
Contingent Cassandra [full draft of J by 7/21; progress on P project]: accomplish 2 ancillary tasks; get reacquainted with J-paper
Daisy [finish thesis]: Try for readable again.
DEH [finish and submit MMP and article]: write syllabus for summer class; write 1000 words each on the MMP and its companion-piece (they are sufficiently closely related that I have decided to try to work on them at the same time). 2000 words total this week, or some reasonable equivalent in editing if I realize that’s where I am with the MMP, which I haven’t looked at in awhile.
Elizabeth Anne Mitchell [progress on diss or article]: (check-in forthcoming)
emmawriting [2 articles submitted; work on 1 of 2 articles]: EOCP results done, outline based on results, and article review with notes / draft writing.
Erika [submit article; misc small deadlines]: ??
GEW [draft of new chapter; edit article]: get the chapter cleaned up by Wednesday, and I’d like to write an abstract of Chapter 3, too, and send both off to the supervisor by Wednesday afternoon.
humming42 [complete book MS]: I will start writing and make sure the organization is working. Writing every day will be my goal.
JaneB [chip away at writing backlog]: write up 500 words from the notes from the meeting and to complete the prep work for the NextBigPaper (one easy make-some-figures task, one complicated work out how to do it and do it task).
jenk [submit article; materials/methods + research sections of thesis]: Get those 2 sections of materials and methods done this week. Revise an outline for a paper (or papers) after a conference call with a collaborator.
Kirstin [rough draft of journal article]: WYJA Week 2
kiwimedievalist [article]: ?
luolin88 [finish and submit journal article; start next article]: One hour in the morning TWTHF
Matilda [2 of 4: paper, 3 presentations]: WYJA Week 5, 6, and 7
NWGirl [revise 2 papers for publication]: Reviewing the Related Literature— evaluating current citations, identifying and reading the related literature, evaluating the related literature, and writing or revising related literature review
profgrrrrl [2 book projects; various MS]: ??
psycgirl [R&R MS; submit MS#2; outline review article]: Finish reading the second book. Type up the list of revisions to do and begin getting the articles together from the updated literature review.
rented life [2 solid book chapters]: Commit backstory idea to paper (or computer) so I don’t forget it. Read 2 chapters of book 1 (already started) for research.
rocket [article & old project submitted; prelim new project]: To review dissertation material that I’m using as the foundation for the article and make a point form outline; work on organization website; deal with service commitment – plan for analysis program.
Ruthie [chapter; book proposal; 2 articles]: ?
Sapience [complete diss; decide scope of new idea]: Need to deal with the writing in preparation for the next round of meetings, start the reading for my new paper idea, and keep working on the revisions for chapters 4&5, which I expect I will be working on simultaneously for the next few weeks.
tracynicolerose [P&P and LM papers ready for conference mid-summer]: Continue on analysis for LM paper and write at least one comparison memo. Also do week 1 in WYJA
Trapped in Canadia [2 diss. chapters; 1 turned into edited book ch.]: Unpack. Finish book review to clear the way for concentrating solely on the dissertation. Read intro of WYJA