On writing to a deadline

It’s amazing how many things it’s possible to let slip when one is working to a deadline. With a deadline Friday night, so far this week I’ve skipped:

  • making dinner
  • making breakfast
  • putting away laundry
  • reading a book group book (The Story of a Marriage by Andrew Sean Greer; so far, two thumbs up)
  • getting my daughter to school on time (we actually missed the carpool one day)
  • sleeping
  • exercising
  • answering email
  • reading research texts fully
  • finding a book valuable if it doesn’t have an index

I’m finding that in the last couple days, I’ve moved into the hard-focus stage. Finally, tonight, my argument came together, and I know how the chapter fits into the dissertation as a whole. (Yay!)

I’m also finding that my notetaking system works pretty well. I make notes on the front page of the article with the relevant page number and a brief description of what I’ll find there. It makes it easy to skim back through an article to find the quotation I want, or to get a general sense of the argument.

I like this part of writing, when everything comes together, when I’m writing well and working well with research.

 

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5 thoughts on “On writing to a deadline

  1. Yay for things coming together! And Yay for abandoning lots of duties! And Yay for you liking something that sounds VERY difficult! And Yay for you being my trailblazer! And Yay for you suggesting a good notetaking system that I can steal!

    🙂

    • I do love my notetaking system! I’m not sure I’m much of a trailblazer–just someone who’s stumbling along after the guy before me. 🙂

  2. Yes, it’s not a pace that one could keep up for very long, but there is something deeply satisfying about abandoning everything else and just cranking through a project like this. Good luck finishing the article/chapter!

  3. Pingback: Keeping sane–a few writing tricks | Writing Account

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