Progress Report

I had a bit of a glitch in my BDS* towards the end of last week when my new laptop came in and it took the College IT guys a good two days to get all of my old data and settings transferred.**  But I got back to my practice on Monday and have been making good progress this week on the cover letter for my proposal.  Excellent progress, in fact.  I have a good 2000 words on top of the 3000 or so words of notes that I took last week.  In real terms, I am romping along.  So why am I still feeling like I am not getting anything done?

Patience, patience, I know.  But it's hard.  Why?  After all, I'm writing.  A good 500 or so words a day, which in academic prose is pretty amazing.  It's as much as I was ever able to write on my old schedule of "working" from 9am to 5 or 6pm every day (if I was in fact working that whole time, which I now very much doubt).  But now I finish around early to mid-afternoon (depending on how long of a break I take between sessions to walk the dog), thus leaving myself time (and energy) to do some more reading, go to fencing practice, or even to knit.

And yet, I'm still anxious.  It's almost October and I had promised myself to have the proposal finished by then.  Okay, so it's taking longer than I had planned (I still have to do the revisions and annotations on my sample text), but not longer, surely, than it would have if I had been trying to work longer hours (see above).  The problem, I realize, is (as Prof. Boice says somewhere, I've been reading quite a few of his books) that binge writers typically don't allow long enough for projects to develop, in part because they don't start early enough, but more because they have never practiced working at a regularly productive pace so they simply don't know how long something is likely to take to do well.  So they get impatient and think that maybe they need to speed up. 

It won't work.  I have to keep telling myself it simply won't work.  And trust that in the long run working in BDS will actually produce more than I could ever accomplish by forcing myself to work to fatigue.  Time to stop.

*Brief, daily sessions, as per Prof. Boice's advice.
**Not that there was so much of it, although it had filled my old box to bursting.  Rather, my old box was so old (in computer terms) that it had trouble communicating effectively with the new.  In the end, the guys had to do a heart transplant, a.k.a. remove the old hard drive, and transfer the data that way.


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