Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Reading, Reading, Reading...and Speed-Writing, Academic-Style

After all the non-schoolwork-related submissions last week, plus a big breakthrough on my dissertation idea, I've been getting back to the schoolwork portion of the semester with verve.

One breakthrough of the week: I wrote 7 pages of (I believe reasonably coherent) academic papers for one of my classes in 3 hours the other night. This is a good sign, as I will have to write quickly when I get around to taking my Big Nasty Exams (otherwise known as prelim exams, comps, or The Thing that Keeps You from Starting Your Dissertation Thoughts in Earnest, depending on your discipline, department, and/or institution).

Speed-writing practice with theoretical concepts fully in hand=good. One could even say that preliminary exams are a sort of speed-writing contest, not that different from NaNoWriMo (with ours, you even have exactly a month to complete them once you've started). Hm....

Okay, back to more reading of theoretical works in preparation to discussing them in class before more writing of papers and presentations about them, leading to final course papers before those ideas get reconstituted into Big Nasty Exams and then the dissertation, with perhaps some conference papers and academic papers somewhere in there (all of which will have inevitable creative by-products). And so the PhD goes on.

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