Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Diary of An Honours Student and WINNER of Bookish Charm Giveaway

Losing Track of Time and Falling Behind

I'm not a huge fan of the fact that the keep calm slogan is turning up absolutely everywhere, but sometimes the moment calls for one of these.  Particularly when the poster speaks the truth.

There are something like five weeks left until my thesis is due.  (At least I HOPE it is five weeks!!!)  I have done three drafts of my story and one and a half of my theoretical exegesis.  I am slowly, day by day making progress...

Okay... so maybe I am watching Gilmore Girls every single day in the background but the word count goes up!  And how much fun is it to watch this:

I just want to put it on a loop and watch again and again....

All that aside, I wouldn't say that I am actually behind.  At the moment my goal is to write 1000 words a day on either project or a combination of the two, but I let myself off the hook if I only manage to write say... 400 words of text that feels like it belongs to part of a breakthrough.  Deadlines, while scary, are also useful.  I think of my deadlines like having a lid on a crate full of helium balloons.  If you want to deliver the balloons in tact, the lid is necessary.  

If you're currently doing your thesis too, or you're thinking about it, you'll know that this part of the year is the most exhilarating, stressful, tiring, intelligence-affirming emotional rollercoaster to date.  Yep, that's right, it's worse than cramming for final year exams.

First of all, there are really no guidelines.  Your supervisor can look over your work but they can't edit it for you.  They can't tell you what to write.  They can suggest what you study but not influence what you get out of it.  And they don't set the topic... at this point, you may be thinking "What on earth did I pick THAT topic for?"  And the answer is irrelevant... because too bad, your thesis is due in five weeks, sucker.  

Second of all, the weather is changing.  Some days it's beautiful and the hint of summer is in the air.  You think to yourself "Self, you've been working hard lately, why don't you take your copy of Pride and Prejudice to the park and read under a shady tree????"  (which does sound like a marvellous idea, doesn't it?)  So you do, or your go shopping, or you watch a movie or take a nap... and the next thing you know it's week 9.  Or at least you think it's week 9, because you don't have classes so you've lost track of time.  The only time that makes sense to you is November 2nd.  D-Day.

Third, things are starting to make sense.   You're writing things and they're sounding pretty professional.  You use words like heretofore.  You don't know if you're using them correctly but you're using them.  And you feel awesome.  The next day you sit down and try to recreate that feeling but all you can think about is junk food, or taking a shower, or going for a walk... (if this happens to you, don't stress, it WILL happen again, so long as you get the butt to desk chair ratio right.  Put in the hard hours, because you really don't have time to bum around waiting for the thesis muse to show up.)

If you are falling behind, it's time to suck it up.  Chair and desk?  Meet bum.  You guys should get to know each other because you're going to be spending a lot of time together over the next few weeks.  Get some chill music, lots of Low GI snacks like fruits and nuts, a bottle of water and get settled.

And remember, this may not be fun, but this is the culmination of something you are passionate about and YOU WILL KICK BUTT IF YOU CHOOSE TO!

A final note of congratulations to the winners of my Bookish Charm giveaway!

The 'Write' Pendant has been won by Jade Carver of  Jade Goes with Everything

The 'I solemnly Swear I am Up To No Good' pendant goes to WrenGirl1991 of Wren's Nest 


The 'She is too fond of books and it has turned her brain' pendant goes to Kristen Bee.

Please use the contact me form to send me your postal address and I will get the prizes to you as soon as possible!  Thanks to everyone who entered.

Much love from the stressed out Thesis Writer!

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