Sure it’s cliche, but it’s true. I’ve spent the last couple of weeks gathering up my articles, finding books, and drafting outlines for each of my comp questions. While this sort of work is invaluable, it doesn’t do much for your psychological outlook, because you don’t really have anything “done.” Very frustrating.
Yesterday, I started writing the answer to one of my questions, and I am so, so glad that I did the amount of prep work that I did. I spent about 3 hours reading over some materials, and working on question #2 (the one that feeds into my dissertation prospectus), drinking an Italian soda at a coffee shop near campus. I was thankful to have my headphones so as to not have to listen to the butt rock being piped in or the self-important loudmouth types that are apparently built into every single coffee shop in the world. You know I’m right.
I figure if I can put in that kind of effort 2 or 3 days a week, I’ll finish my writing in plenty of time for my August 18th deadline. Yesterday’s work generated a little over 2 pages, but for me, it was a huge accomplishment. Now I have something, however small, to show for my efforts.