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MDC Academic Writing Club - Page 2

post #21 of 136
Thread Starter 

Damage control day:


My coauthor list in HRing appears to be scooping me.  I'm trying to get something out of all this.  So far, 2 phone calls and 2 very carefully worded email.  I honestly couldn't care less about author list order.  Just publish my data along with yours and keep me on the author list.


Carefully worded emails and a phone call from DD's school.  Trying to figure out what to do about DD and the fact that she seems to hate her gifted services suddenly.  <Sigh>


I finally got the problem with the CP paper figured out.  I still have to write it.  Overloaded on class prep, grading, etc.


Today I'll follow up aggressively on any response on HRing, and rewrite the grain growth description for CP.


Edit:  No response on HRing.  Grrrr.  Got a paragraph written for CP, but the calculation won't work.  Back to the drawing board.  Very negative reviews on my continuing funding.  I'm getting a bone for next year, but not much of one.  Upshot:  not a good day.

post #22 of 136

Last week's assessment: Goals were:

  • prep for class on Monday (done)
  • subsample some rocks for phd advisor (half done, scheduled time this afternoon to finish)
  • outline a plan for writing my teaching paper. (not done)


Achievement for last week: had a great week with my kids despite them having time off and me not so much. Visited the Science Museum of Minnesota and now have a plan for my field trip for historical geology (a gen ed class) that involves an hour in the field and a trip to the museum (most spots within 3 hours drive of my university will still be snow covered at the ideal time for a field trip).


Goals for this week:

  • finish sampling
  • outline paper
  • look for 2-3 sources for background section on paper
  • check in with coauthors on paper for status report
  • 5 hours in chem lab
post #23 of 136

Sampling for this small assignment: DONE! Whew. Now moving on to this week's goals.


post #24 of 136
I managed my 10 sentences over the weekend, though not much else. I'm really struggling with not having enough time, but I think that's going to be true for a while. J wants to nurse every 90-minutes to 2-hours from 7 pm on currently, and I'm not good about writing with a baby in my lap, nor grading if I need to make comments for that matter. OTOH, this too shall pass, sometime.

Also, I'm revising what I said about having a DH-sponsored, kid-free dedicated writing hour. Frankly, I have no idea when it would happen this week. Friday evening? Maybe I'll try to block out something during spring break week later this month--like drop off the kids as usual, let DH pick them up and do some intensive writing then.

Goals for the week:
-5 sentences per day
-class prep
-start working through the pile of journals that needs to be read. I'd like to finish one this week.
post #25 of 136
Thread Starter 

kerc, you already done with the week on a Monday?



WRITE:  CP revise 20 minutes focused attention


Teach until 11:30

Load sample, ship cells FedEx

Sign DS up for kindergarten

Get annual report in



wrote the above with writing last.  I need to shift my thinking process so that writing is top priority, even if teaching and other stuff seem to come first.


Report for the day:  Got the writing time in and half the 'to do' list.  I'd forgotten about a search committee meeting, nixing the whole "get DS signed up for kindergarten" thing.  I guess that's for Thursday when I go watch DD's biography report on Mary Anning.

Edited by Geofizz - 3/1/11 at 4:04pm
post #26 of 136

Geo - I admit I finished the "other" tasks before I even made my priority list for writing.  Erk.  But they are now done. 


Goals last week:

1. Finish GST paper and submit.  DONE!  I submitted the paper yesterday!

2. Work on finalizing #s.  I got my part done and sent it off to colleagues.  Now I'm making revisions based on their comments.

3. Put together and give a talk (done!).


Goals for the rest of this week: (update for Thursday, which is more than halfway through the week, unfortunately)

1. Pull together #s from colleagues for BFR.  Done with about half - in the middle of conversations.

2. Start work on writing BFR.  Re-read through 2-yr report.  Start updating ravine section. - 50% done.

3. Spend 1 hour working on I3 proposal.

4. Spend 1 hour working on NSF suppl request. - Done.


Potential Wrench:

I never heard back whether or not I need to submit PI report to center.  I have pieces of what could become an annual report, but I don't want to work on it until I know I have to.


Happy News:

I got the cover photo for a paper coming out in April!  Whoo hoo!

Edited by kaybee - 3/3/11 at 11:31am
post #27 of 136

kaybee - which journal would that be? or you can pm and tell me.


Goals for this week (Feb 28-March 4)

1. SK: read and edit letter to editor by march 1

2. Appy: read all the way through by March 1

3. erosion: write down co-author comments, review by march 4, decide how to proceed

4. Work on section 30 minutes every day M-F

5. Submit no cost extension request by March 4

post #28 of 136

My 30 min a day was an epic fail this weekend, but i did good today.   of course i had to hide to do it LOL.  friday i was getting ready to spend 30 min and a student walked in my office.  so today i stayed home, cancelled all meetings and just got started.  i probably spend a good 4 hours on it!!!  and I am in a pretty good place.  if i can find time to continue with this, and if no one shows up to office hours, i might be able to finish this chunk by the end of the week.


writing time:

Wednesday 12:30 - 1

Thursday 1 - 1:30 write

1:30-2 Make Fri activity

grade projects (bring to meeting @11)

Friday 1-1:30 write


carving out my 30 min now since believe it or not, i have back to back teaching and meetings at every other time.  *sigh*



post #29 of 136


Originally Posted by namaste_mom View Post

kaybee - which journal would that be? or you can pm and tell me.

It's in Geology - I'm pretty excited!


Made it half-way through old report today, making notes on what needs to be revised and updated for BFR. 


Also adding to the to-do list: Read through FKM's manuscript.


My long-lost M.S. student is coming back to work during her spring break (she's in a program to earn her teaching certificate now).  I really, really, really, want her to overcome writer's block and finish her thesis!

post #30 of 136

Oh, can I join in??? I rarely check in to MDC these days, so the universe must have been telling me to find you all today!  I'm in my 6th year at a teaching intensive (and I do mean intensive) state university.  I took a year off the tenure track when DD was born, so I will go up in the fall.  I have a 4 course per semester teaching load, although I currently teach 3 per semester due to a grant that is slated to end this year.  And I have had one 2% raise in the 5.5 years I've been on my job.  Okay, I think I'll get straight to the writing projects rather than going down the slippery slope of describing work setting and spiraling into depression, LOL.


Projects for March: (can it really be March already?  Small cheer for making it through February, my least favorite month!)

1. Prepare Talk for NARST (NARST): this will end up being part of a giganto paper I'm writing with 2 others; deadline to send stuff to discussant is 3/21

2. Full outline of tricky transitions paper (TT): this will be a single authored paper, and I want it out the door in May at the latest, parts are written but still have some analysis to do so it's a mess...

3. IRB protocol for learning progressions project (IRB): I hate counting this as writing, but it is words on a page and I must get it done this month

4. 5 page proposal for dean (LP): While I re-group and decide what next for an NSF CAREER proposal that wasn't funded, my dean has said he's going to help me look for foundation money.  Don't know that I can count on much help despite the promise, but hey, I'm not going to ignore an offer of assistance.  Especially from the person who will be reading my tenure file in a few months...


I really, really, want to add work on a new book proposal to this list, but I do believe that the 4 items above are more than enough for this month.


Tomorrow will be entirely taken up by a job candidate visit and grading the rest of the papers that I must return to students on Thursday.  So I will count as a success doing 20 minutes of work on any of the above.


It feels good, and a bit overwhelming, to write this all down in one place! 

post #31 of 136
Thread Starter 

Hiya Stefka!


Wow, Kaybee, what an honor!


I've got another MS graduate in my group!  My student did a fabulous job with his defense, and now he's onto his PhD.  First experiments get loaded this weekend.  ;)  His thesis is so well written that I only anticipate another brief round or two to cut it down for EPSL.



20 minutes focused attention on CP. 

Track down coauthor scooping me (he's moving this week, yada yada)

Submit annual report - wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.  I'd forgotten about a paper from last year.


Get my hair cut.  I'm looking quite shabby.  I'll "reward" myself with this if I can get the 20 minutes of CP done pronto.


My tenure case is now through the provost, simply waiting for a rubber stamp from the trustees in June. 

post #32 of 136

kaybee - I just checked out the website but the April cover is not up yet but I definitely will check it out when it is published.


Welcome Stefka


Geofizz - I need my haircut also, even though it is just a hoop, it is still nice getting the final letter for tenure from the trustees



Goals for this week (Feb 28-March 4)

1. SK: read and edit letter to editor by march 1  DONE

2. Appy: read all the way through by March 1 DONE, plus fixed figures, need to write letter to editor

3. erosion: write down co-author comments, review by march 4, decide how to proceed I didn't get this done because I got distracted trying to figure out how to use iannotate so that I could read it on my iPad but I did figure it out.

4. Work on section 30 minutes every day M-F DONE, did F's work on Th

5. Submit no cost extension request by March 4 DONE

Edited by namaste_mom - 3/7/11 at 5:02am
post #33 of 136
Carita--DH hides too in order to get writing done. At this point, he usually blocks out a writing day in his calendar so no one tries to schedule a meeting and then he goes to our local library so no colleagues or students can find him. It's been really effective.

I didn't manage my 5 sentences last night so I'm going to shoot for 10 tonight. On the plus side, I have a guest performer coming in tomorrow so I don't have to do any class prep. My plan for the evening is to do 30 minutes of grading, then writing, then probably more grading. We'll see how often J is up to nurse, seeing as that always makes it harder.
post #34 of 136

Well - I put in 5 min today - not so good, but slow and steady.  Yesterday I got an email from my advisor.  I was dreading it, but I'm glad he FINALLY checked up on me.  LOL.  I can only put it off so long, and I needed it.  SO I told him straight up I needed more specific feedback.  We were on 2 diferent planets I guess.  He thought everything was okay and so no need for comment, I thought he didn't like my project was not worth his time to comment.  Well we cleared it up and now I have specific feedback and a greenlight to resume!!!  wahoo!!  He said " the general idea there is quite good."  so I will take that!!!  LOL.


30 min will be hard to carve out tomorrow, but I'll keep trying.  Can't wait for break to really focus on it.  I have one break day for a professional dev day, one for a textbook search & committee obligations and one for prepping and grading.  That leave 7 days for work work work/writing writing writing!!

post #35 of 136

Carita - It sounds like you are moving forward, which is great, even though it's slow.


Geo - Great news getting a student through and crossing the next tenure hurdle.  My dh is on the same schedule - he got the Chancellor's letter this week.


Namaste-mom - you are making me jealous - good job getting through everything this week!


Realrellim - I'm pulling for 10 sentences for you!


Today pretty much stunk for me getting anything done - all I wrote was an exam and the rest of the day was meetings, an airport run, a 4yo check-up, and a seminar.


Tomorrow's goals:

30 minutes on I3 - DONE
Phone call with colleague about results for BFR - Not there

Back to that ravine section of BFR for 30 minutes - 15 minutes


Edited by kaybee - 3/4/11 at 11:49am
post #36 of 136
Originally Posted by kaybee View Post

Today pretty much stunk for me getting anything done - all I wrote was an exam and the rest of the day was meetings, an airport run, a 4yo check-up, and a seminar.

yeah, that was pretty much me. Only for me it was: lab, stupid paperwork, preschool pickup, read with 2nd graders, look at agates from India with a former student i ran into, grading and more paperwork, email several people about providing meals for a pregnant coworker's family after she has the baby, pick up at scouts and then dinner and trip to the library. I missed a seminar I wanted to go to, I don't have a lecture for tomorrow and my kid's paperwork isn't done for kindergarten registration which takes place tomorrow.


tomorrow: better day. I hope.


I do have a report from yesterday: I put my undergraduate student on copying some journal articles for me to read this weekend.

post #37 of 136
Originally Posted by Realrellim View Post

Goals for the week:
-5 sentences per day - Done, though I ended up combining a few days and writing 15 sentences last night. Still, it all works out and I've finally moved into the next section
-class prep Done.
-grading Still not done. And it's soul-sucking to boot.
-start working through the pile of journals that needs to be read. I'd like to finish one this week. Sadly, also not done though I have been working through an ILL book that arrived instead.

Goals for this week:
- 5 sentences per day
- halfway through ILL book
- class prep x2
- finish grading pre-concert papers
- start grading research progress reports
- finish contacting guest performers for class
post #38 of 136

Week March 7-11



1. Check student submitted SK paper, Due Mar 7

2. Write letter to editor for Appy paper, due March 9

3. Submit Appy Paper due March 11

4. Erosion, read through and decide how to proceed, due March 11

5. Work on xsection 30 minutes every day M-F

6. review PRF Due, March 11

7. Grade Project 1, Due March 9

8. Prepare Midterm, Due March 9


This is the week before our spring break so I have many goals....

post #39 of 136
Thread Starter 

Week of March 9


Trying a new strategy:  I have several projects that all need to continue moving forward.  I've been doing one at a time, letting the others languish.  I'm going to try to address each one of the most urgent at least a little each day.  Most pressing papers:  CP, Bam, AlH, HRing, and Hol.  That's 5 things, with 5 shifts in attention.  We'll see.


Minimum 30 min/day focused attention on writing tasks Accomplished for Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri

CP back to grad student 3/9  DONE, sent to coauthor 3/9 with "comment by 3/16 or we'll submit" threat attached.

Figure out status of AlH paper 3/10 DONE, mapped out next step

Contact coauthor on HRing 3/10 DONE a day early, RESOLVED!!!

15 minutes/day on Hol  Accomplished for Mon, Tues, Wed, wee bit data analysis Thurs, wee bit organization Fri

15 minute/day on Bam  Accomplished for Mon, Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri

15 min on AlH Wed, Thurs, Fri Accomplished for Wed, Thurs, Fri

Edited by Geofizz - 3/11/11 at 1:34pm
post #40 of 136

Here are my goals for this week:

1. Finish reading FK manuscript and get it back to him with comments (by 3/8)  Done, 3/7

2. Finish NSF Suppl request by Friday to submit next week Done, 3/10 will submit on Monday

3. 1 hr I3 writing (plus 1 hr I3 meeting) Done 3/11

4. Finish reading 2yr report, making comments on where to proceed next (by 3/9) (er, by 3/11?) This is going to have to be pushed into next week, but it's related to #7. 

5. Get ahold of colleague to finalize #s on BFR - Done, 3/8

6. Grade a gazillion exams (ok, just 130) - Done - phew, that stunk.

7. Got another ms back from a colleague - read through it and turned it back to him.  Need to go over supplemental docs by 3/10



FK ms DONE - sent back to co-author

I3 meeting - DONE

Edited by kaybee - 3/11/11 at 11:37am
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