The time for writing is upon us!

This is the post from over on from earlier this week where I declared my goals for AcWriMo.

So Academic Writing Month is almost due to kick off, which means it’s time to share my plans and what I hope to achieve throughout the month of November. I’ve done a bit of thinking about what I will publicly declare my goals to be, and involved in that thinking has been a consideration of what is overly optimistic and what is a realistic and achievable goal. I don’t want to have a sense of impending doom before I even commence!

So here goes- this is my grand plan for the month of November:

1) Finish a book chapter on methodology (that has a deadline looming!)

2) Finish a half-written journal article (one of those ones that’s been hanging around for a while now)

3) Work on the revisions to a co-authored paper (note I’m not saying finish as I think that might be a bit optimistic!)

4) Participate in a writing workshop

5) Finish the column for a professional journal that is due at the start of November.

My plan to finish these is to try and devote at least 30 minutes each day to some writing – rather than thinking I need a clear block of time to get these things done (the art of procrastination works well by saying ‘Oh I don’t have a good couple of hours to devote to this, why start now?’),  I’m going to set an achievable goal of 30 minutes a day. I think this will mean I need to do some better monitoring of where I get up to and where I’m heading next with each piece though.

I started to get really good at that after I worked with some of Pat Goodson’s writing suggestions and had a nifty Excel spreadsheet set up where I was tracking how much I was writing each day, what I was up to and where I was going next. I have a bit of an aversion to spreadsheets and I was surprised how much this actually helped me and kept me focused. Somewhere along the track I stopped doing this and my excel spreadsheet lies abandoned, it could be time to resurrect it I think.

Seeing as I’m heading along to the Arnold Zable workshop in a week or so, I figure I can confidently tick the writing workshop off and I’m hoping that participating in that helps me keep on track with Academic Writing Month as well.

So that’s me  -somewhat modest goals, but ones to help me clear a pesky backlog of writing that got pushed aside in the final rush of teaching for this semester. What about you?

What will you be writing this month? I’d love to hear your plans!


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