The Joys of Scheduling

Yesterday, my adviser called me and told me to do two things.  First: don’t cock up the conference paper I’ll be giving in March at the American Society for Environmental History; apparently, my panel’s chair/commenter does not tolerate shit work.  Okay, my adviser didn’t say that exactly, but that’s the gist of it.  Second: make a dissertation schedule and work diary.  This is fantastic for at least three reasons:

1) My adviser seems to have a pretty good feel for what I need in the way of direction.  Just the other day I was musing about how to proceed as ABD, and then BAM!, a phone call telling me what to do.  I suppose there’s an off-chance that my adviser reads this blog, but I’d rather think that my adviser (a) knows me well enough to give me a push when one is needed and (b) has seen enough ABDs treading water to know that an adviser’s intervention can be very important at this stage.  In short: my adviser’s advising, which is excellent.

2) Turns out that maybe I do matter to my adviser.  Nice to get the attention.

3) I get to make lists and schedules and calendars!  I have a perverse affection for to-do lists and the like, and my adviser has basically given me license to schedule to my heart’s content.  In addition to creating a calendar for finishing the dissertation and making a schedule that builds in dissertation time every day, my adviser also wants me to write a work diary, to keep track of what I do (and don’t accomplish) each day.  At first I thought to put that on this here blog, but (a) how mind-numbingly boring would that be! and (b) I’ve come to see this blog serving a different function for my academic development, extra-dissertation-wise.  Plus, it means I get to buy a cool notebook.  Bonus.

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