Motivation and Encouragement for Dissertation Writers Across Disciplines

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TD:D Blog Carnival: Volume 5, Edition 1

In online resources, TD:D Blog Carnival on November 11, 2010 at 5:30 am

Welcome to another edition of the TD:D Blog Carnival!

Thanks to Tim for a great guest review last week!  Make sure to check out his website in addition to the great links below.

Enjoy this week’s posts and make sure to check back next week for another edition.


How to Get Past the NaNoWriMo Danger Point and Finish Your Novel by Hillary Rettig

Although this post is focused on helping writers get past the “Week Two Doldrums” that occur when writing a novel in a month’s time, the five suggestions Rettig offers are also highly applicable for dissertation writers experiencing a slump.

How to Harness the Power of Momentum by Katie Tallo

“It can carry you like a strong current carries a fallen leaf. It can ground you like an early morning walk through the woods. It can move you like wind moves a cloud across the summer sky. It can ignite your spirit and make you feel like you can do anything.  It is momentum – that invisible, universal force that can saturate your every choice, your every step, your every breath, your every moment of resolve with vibrant, joyful energy. Momentum can surge you forward and it can pull you under. It goes with your flow, follows your lead and enhances your trajectory.”

How to Put Yourself Into an Effortless Writing Zone by James Chartrand

“Writing can be a struggle. But for most writers, the writing isn’t the hard part. Come on, think about it. You don’t struggle (too much) over how to spell words or use proper grammar. You know how to put a reasonable piece of content together. It might need to sit overnight for that final polish, but you aren’t a beginner learning the basics anymore. The killer is starting.”

The Writing Life

Wake Up! 7 Simple Ways to Energize Your Writing Powers by Dean Rieck

“Do you sometimes feel like you’re in a rut with writing? We all do from time to time. It comes from getting too comfortable with the way we do things. We fall into familiar patterns and it puts us to sleep. But waking yourself up isn’t as hard as you might think.”

The Beauty of Paper by Jennie Nash

“This morning I printed out 60 pages of my new novel to read for the first time on paper. I sharpened a pencil, cleared some space at the kitchen table, made a cup of tea, sat down, and read what I have so far.  Why today? I’m not sure. It just felt right.  And what’s the big deal about paper? Things look different on paper. They just do. You can read something a hundred times on the screen, but when you read it on paper, it has a different rhythm, a different sound. Your eye catches different things, and it feels somehow more real.”

The TD:D blog carnival is published weekly on Thursdays.

If you would like to submit a post for the TD:D blog carnival, email your link to tododissertation[at]gmail[dot]com by the previous Wednesday at noon.


TD:D Blog Carnival: Volume 4, Edition 4

In finishing, online resources, TD:D Blog Carnival, Uncategorized on October 28, 2010 at 11:46 am

Welcome to another edition of the TD:D Blog Carnival!

I’m doing something a little different this week because I want to make you aware of a great opportunity for some major dissertation writing that could happen over the month of November.  Check it out and see if you want to take the plunge!

Enjoy the posts below and make sure to check back next week for another edition.

NaNoWriMo and InaDWriMo

What is NaNoWriMo?

“National Novel Writing Month is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30… Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It’s all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly.”

Can I do a NaDisWriMo (National Dissertation Writing Month)?

“I have decided to create my own spin-off of NaNoWriMo. Let me introduce: International Dissertation Writing Month (InaDWriMo— Doesn’t that just roll off the tongue?) I know, we’re supposedly writing our dissertations every month. To which I say (oh-so-articulately), yeah yeah, whatever. You might. I spend most months surfing the internet and playing solitaire.** But November will be different.”

What is the history of InaDWriMo?

“First, a little background: International acaDemic Writing Month is the academic’s answer to NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month. It was originally created by StyleyGeek as International Dissertation Writing Month, but because so many of us who had already finished our degrees were interested in a little challenge, the D was loosely interpreted as acaDemic. This means that you can write your dissertation, a book chapter, an article, a grant proposal – anything goes, as long as it is academic.”

Does NaNoWriMo allow academics to participate?

“Is anyone else using NaNoWriMo as a prompt to get moving on those pesky conference papers and book drafts that are so easy to put off?  It’s not the traditional way of the NaNo, perhaps, but 50,000 words of a draft or two in a month – even attempting the goal – goes a long way towards both being productive writers and mustering up the courage to believe that we can contribute to our fields.”

Are there other academics who plan to (or have) take(n) this crazy plunge?

“I’m a PhD candidate who needs to get her backside into gear to write the dissertation proposal. November is NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).  I am contemplating using NaNo unofficially, as a way to push myself forward academically. Has anyone ever done this? Is there an academic equivalent? I basically just want to give myself a push to get started. My work habits are very much like Newton’s first law of motion.”

Tips for Writing  a Lot in a Small Amount of Time

How to Write a Novel in 30 Days by Leo Babauta

“I successfully completed NaNoWriMo in 2006, and it was an incredible time. It was a lot of fun, and joining with the efforts of tens of thousands of fellow writers is an experience like no other.”

Binge Writing – The 30 Day Novel by Austin Camacho

“This is your chance to kick out a large number of words to finish a novel in record time. Many people start the challenge and end up with a sizeable number of pages by the end. Some are inspired to start writing for the first time. Others are inspired to finish something for the first time. Most of us find that writing at breakneck speed produces a lower quality of work that doesn’t reflect what is normally produced when writing within our own timing. But no matter – we have something to work with.”

The 3-Day Novel Survival Guide

“First we must address the “mindset” or psychological condition of the potential contestant/author. This includes the conditions of the emotions and, as importantly, that of the spirit. 3-Day Novel Contest experience has shown the importance of proper balance and health in all these areas.”

Do you plan to challenge yourself to a writing contest in November?  Leave a comment so the TD:D community can cheer you on!  (Also, think about writing a guest post about your experience!)

The TD:D blog carnival is published weekly on Thursdays.

If you would like to submit a post for the TD:D blog carnival, email your link to tododissertation[at]gmail[dot]com by the previous Wednesday at noon.

TD:D Blog Carnival: Volume 4, Edition 3

In online resources, TD:D Blog Carnival on October 22, 2010 at 1:52 pm

Welcome to another edition of the TD:D Blog Carnival!

Sorry for the late post, folks.  I’ve been traveling a bit lately and away from my computer.  Fortunately, I was able to squirrel away a few minutes today to share these great posts with you!

Enjoy the posts below and make sure to check back next week for another edition.

New (to me) Writing Websites to Check Out

Confident Writing by Joanna Paterson

“I create writing spaces that give you some ‘time out’ in order to start writing or get back into a writing practice.”

Daily Writing Tips by Maeve, Ali, Simon, and Daniel

“Whether you are an attorney, manager or student, writing skills are essential to your success. The rise of the information age – with the proliferation of e-mails, blogs and social networks – makes the ability to write clear, correct English more important than ever. Daily Writing Tips is about that.”

Manage Your Writing by Kenneth Davis

“In this knowledge economy, writing is the chief value-producing activity. But you may not be writing as well as you could. That may be because you think writing requires a special talent. In fact, writing is a process that can be managed, like any other business process. If you can manage people, money, or time—then you can manage your writing.”

Getting It Done

How to Show Up and Write by Taylor Lindstrom

“Write every day. Write at the same time. Write for hours. Write for 20 minutes. Just show up and write. You’ve heard this advice before and you haven’t taken it yet. You meant to. But you haven’t.”

Future Me by Nancy Whichard

“How do you keep focused on your writing goal?  Our Lizard Brains can make it all too easy to let a goal slip, and with each deadline or marker you miss, it’s that much longer before you finish your dissertation.”

For Fun

The Dissertation Diet by Alice

“Writing a dissertation can be an overwhelming, trying, and totally maddening experience. If you find yourself up late at night in a moment of desperation Googling “dissertation depression” (yes, it’s true, I had this experience), then you know you’re in trouble.”

The TD:D blog carnival is published weekly on Thursdays.

If you would like to submit a post for the TD:D blog carnival, email your link to tododissertation[at]gmail[dot]com by the previous Wednesday at noon.