Wednesday, September 14, 2005

And now for something completely different

In my other life I’m in grad school. I don’t write about it much here for several reasons - partially it’s because the blog is my break from that world and that kind of writing, partially it’s because that world is so much about the writing at this point, and the whole writing-about-writing thing just seems like a kind of procrastination, and partially it’s because I haven’t really been spending the kind of time and energy on school that I should be, so there isn’t much to say.

However, a big part of the reason for this break before IVF is to give me a chance to focus on school and writing, and it’s silly to think I can somehow separate the two huge things in my life as if they have no connections. So here I am, writing about writing. Or more specifically, writing about not-writing.

I have two deadlines for the papers I’m currently writing - one is the deadline I’ve agreed upon with my advisor, based on the fact that she’ll be out of the country for a couple of months so I should finish before she leaves. The other, which I’ve scheduled to coincide with the first, is based on the fact that defending the papers I’m currently writing (a bunch of profs asking me potentially tough and often off-topic questions about why I did what I did in the papers) while on hormonally-altering medications is a Very Bad Idea. So I have to finish the papers, soon, for both reasons.

I’m trying to be as detail oriented and outcome focused as I’ve been with persuing diagnosis and treament of our fertility issues. The problem is that I’m great at compiling and organizing information (lab results, important articles, whatever) but less good at focusing long enough to write more than a blog’s length worth of sentences. A few weeks ago, my dad told me to just write the damn thing, and I almost cried since it sounded so much like the academic version of just relax - if it were that easy, don’t you think I would have done it already? But I think I’m at that point now - I just have to write these papers, now, and be done with them so I can focus on what my advisor calls my “other project.”

So I’m taking a suggestion from a popular dissertation writing book and from an article I read recently, and just writing a bit every day. Hopefully those bits will turn into the papers they need to be in the next few weeks, or I’m screwed. And not in the fun way. Which is all to say, I need to stop writing here so I can go write there. Not that I’m taking a break from blogging or anything. Even at my best (and I’m definitely not there right now), I can’t be immersed in academia all the time - it makes me nuts. I just needed to put this out there so it’s not hanging over me as one more excuse not to write.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go write a bit.


  1. The Larch!
    Very different indeed, but very interesting too. I should get these books, if I ever want to complete my dissertation. I have barely started doing the research!

    Good luck!

  2. Totally understand, been there. I know how hard it can be. Best of luck with it! (We'll miss you in the meantime) :(

  3. My God you sound very organised! I wish I could take a leaf out of your blog, I am all over the place as far as my deadlines are concerned.

    Good luck!