Tag Archives: Research Week

March 11, 2011, 3:47 pm

Research Week: the conclusion

It’s Friday! I am back in the office today and therefore making more progress. I played with my data this morning, and after ln-transforming the data (why, oh why, do I always forget about that), they finally make some sense. Hooray!

Today’s progress:

Minutes spent writing: 120 (I skipped the 30 minutes of crap writing today)

Words written: 484 (more time playing with data than actually writing)

Papers read: 2

And here are the final statistics of my progress during Research Week:

Minutes spent writing: 690

Words written: 12,405

Papers read: 10

Not too shabby. Can I keep this up during a regular week? Probably not. But I don’t see any reason why I can’t try to incorporate more of this into my daily work routine. Maybe reading one paper and spending 60 minutes of research writing a day (even if it’s broken into smaller chunks of time) is not unreasonable.

As spring break comes to…

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March 10, 2011, 2:22 pm

Research Week, Day 4 Report

I don’t know if any of you out there have ever tried to work productively at home, with 8 territorial and emotionally needy pets (ok, only 7 – the tortoise doesn’t really give a shit about anything except his heat lamp and food) – which is bad enough, but just wait ’til you get to the end of the sentence — while having a new furnace installed. If you haven’t tried it but are considering it, let me give you a word of advice: don’t.

I did my 30 minutes of crap writing this morning, and then sort of fumbled through 90 minutes of researchy writing cutting and pasting. It was too difficult to concentrate with the banging coming from the basement, the dog barking and whining, the cat growling at the noise in the heating vent, the other cat insisting on climbing into my lab because he’s cold and there’s no heat, and the parrot squawking. I haven’t even bothered trying to read any scientific…

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March 9, 2011, 1:55 pm

Research Week, Day 3 Report

Still going well! I don’t think I’d be able to keep up this level of productivity any time other than spring break or summer, though – it’s awfully quiet around here right now.

Minutes spent writing: 150

Words written: 2863 (but most of those were not new words – I did a lot of editing today)

Papers read: 2

Progress on manuscript: Looking good! I edited the Introduction and Methods sections and I’m pretty pleased with them. I think I’m going to have to go back and run more statistics before I get much further with Results and Discussion, though.

Weather: gray and rainy. I guess I should be glad that it’s above freezing, though, right?


March 8, 2011, 2:06 pm

Research Week, Day 2 Report

Minutes spent writing: 150

Words written: 2928 (yeah, that includes references – so what?)

Papers read: 2

Manuscript: definitely progressing

Other project: ideas are coming together, thanks to all the paper reading – I drafted an introduction this afternoon!

Poster: finished, except for small design tweaks


March 8, 2011, 7:01 am

Research Week, Day 1 Report

I set pretty ambitious goals for myself this week, and Day 1 went pretty well. Here are my goals:

  1. 2.5 hours per day on writing tasks, in 30 minute chunks. First 30 minutes when I first get up, the other 4 to occur as they fit throughout the day.
  2. Read 2 papers a day.
  3. Finish poster for next month’s conference.
  4. Make significant progress on a new manuscript – one for which I have all the data.
  5. Complete a small service-related writing task.

How’d I do yesterday? Very well! I started by being generous with my definition of “writing” in the first 30 minute block, and I used this time yesterday to write out these goals and map out my plan for the week. (This blog post is today’s first writing task – hey, it’s words, right?) I spent a full hour on the manuscript (much of which was cut and paste from an abandoned attempt back in December – but hey, gotta start somwhere), 30 minutes on the…

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