Summer Writes: Week 6

Welcome to week six! That means we’re nearing the halfway point of our twelve weeks of writing, so this may be a good time to take stock of your goals for the summer to see if you’re on track. If not, there’s no shame in revising your goals. If you were overly ambitious and bit off more than you can chew, it can be tempting to chuck the whole thing in frustration–better to realistically assess where you are now and decide what you can accomplish in the next month and a half.

In the meantime, here’s a post from LifeHacker about planning and how to avoid procrastination. Spoiler alert: the way to overcome procrastination is to just jump into a project. That may sound like duh advice, but I think it holds particularly true for writing–if you wait until you have an idea fully formed in your head before putting pen to page or fingers to keyboard, you’re likely to never get off the ground. However, if you start filling in some details of that argument or narrative, it can help everything else begin to snap into place.

And here are your goals for the week:

Carly: Draft ASLH funding request, contact archivist.

Matt: Go to the Hagley for research, revise article for Policy History.

Shicky: [Welcome, Shicky!] Write 1,000 words–not “meta-commentary”–by the 4th.

Dan: Four pomodoros Sunday, eight Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Mail out five interview transcripts, including one that has yet to be edited. Go through Ethnic News Watch and African American Historical Newspapers searches for “Pernessa Seele” and “Harlem Week of Prayer.” Pull draft of chapter five into Scrivener to chop it up and play with the structure.

Megan: Four pomodoros Tuesday, and eight pomodoros Thursday, Friday, and Sunday. Time split evenly between coding data and free-writing to figure out argument.

Brenna: Catch up on recent scholarship for chapter three, start job/postdoc spreadsheet, start teaching portfolio.
If you haven’t set your goals yet, do so in the comments below and I’ll add them to this post. Happy writing!

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3 thoughts on “Summer Writes: Week 6

  1. Hi all! I am still plugging away over here. My goal is 4 pomodoros tomorrow (Tuesday), and eight pomodoros Thursday, Friday, and Sunday. My pale ass is going to the beach on Saturday, so I am taking that day off!

    I second Dan’s earlier comment about the inextricability of writing and research. I get so bogged down and overwhelmed with analyzing my data that I very quickly lose sight of the big picture. So, for this coming week, because I have the lofty goal of completing a draft of a paper by August 1, I am going to try doing half of my pomodoros free-writing to figure out my argument, and the other half coding data. I’ll let you know how it goes.

    Good luck, everyone!

  2. I am THE WORST at remembering what day it is in the summer. Also, I got an email earlier this week that basically put me into anxiety mode: 1st H-net Job announcement that actually applies to me….

    I know I have to calm down and just take these as they come, but the first one made it feel real that I’m actually trying to finish this coming year and go on the job market.

    Anyway, despite that panic moment, I know I’ve been pretty sketchy on here the last couple weeks, but thankfully I’m making progress and figured posting late is better than never. I’m on track with the goals I set last week (finished draft of book review, did day of archive research, organized all that research, revised encyclopedia essay and started thinking about chapter three). I know this week is already halfway done, but I’m spending the week with family so my goals are relatively small. In thinking more deeply about Chapter 3, I realized that I do desperately need to catch up on some recent scholarship. I brought a bunch of books with me and I’ve been reading. If I can get a lot of this reading done by Sunday, I’ll be happy. Regarding the job announcement, I’m also going to begin my spreadsheet for potential jobs/postdocs, play around with Interfolio for familiarity, and begin an outline for my Teaching Philosophy. And, in a couple days, I’ll post my goals for Week 7!!

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