Signup date: 26 Mar 2008 at 4:26pm
Last login: 17 Mar 2010 at 9:00pm
Post count: 274
The lovely PhD rollercoaster strikes again...although I think the collective ups and downs of this forum might not appeal to any budding theme park designers?
I'm also looking for jobs and hate the networking thing. I'm off to a conference in a month and know that I should be telling everyone how wonderful I am and that they should give me a job...most likely I'll be lurking on the edge trying to be invisible. Not my strong point either.
There's also something a bit strange about the job hunting because I'm finally enjoying my PhD and in some ways it'll be sad to finish and move away from this life (in other ways not so sad - another weekend with my laptop and a glass of wine for company...).
I think the important thing you say is that you don't want to do anything else other than research; that's exactly what your PhD is for and why you did it. I'm a believer that you can make things happen (sounds so cheesy!), but determination is the way to get there. I think science is a lot less cut-throat networking than many other worlds.
My networking will be mostly low impact. I'm starting to look for advertised posts, but also working on a general CV and covering letter which I will begin to send to relevant people in my field. I've been advised to email anyone I've met at conferences etc and put the word out that I'm looking for work. I expect it to be a slow task, unless I get something advertised/find a hen's tooth! I've already been told that the current financial sitution, and certain key economic decisions made by the powers that be have reduced my options, but c'est la vie.
I'm partly social sciences so I'll have a look at my lists of people/organisations for this side of the world and see what may be of use. But that'll be tomorrow as i'm currently distracted by my empty stomach...
Hope the friends helped!
If you live near (or visit) London you could join the British Library. This might be worth it for a first investigation of the various journals before you fork out any money to subscribe. It's free to join but you need to have a research purpose - I would imagine that background PhD research would count. Check out their website for more details and give them a call if you're making a special journey. Some stuff takes a few weeks to be delivered. It sounds like it could be a good start for your research - and if you live nearby you wouldn't have to subscribe to anything.
Thanks Apple - those links are really helpful. Much as it's one less distraction for me not looking at my word count the copy/paste/word thing is annoying. Word count is important for thesis structure as I could easily under or over write a section or chapter. Much appreciated.
How's everyone else? PinkNeuron have you overcome your tiredness or are you hectic coming up to the presentation?
I'm being slow, but moving in the right direction, speed is variable. Bank holiday weekend ahead so I will stock up on some food treats and chain myself to my laptop for three days! Anyone else doing something equally fun?!
I agree with the others, you're probably experiencing things which others in this situation do, so don't worry too much. Firstly, have you got Joan Bolkers book? It's excellent for getting through low motivation phases and ideas for overcoming writers block and generally making things seem more achievable.
I am hoping for a complete draft by early january alongside other commitments, including more data collection. I also only have two reasonable done chapters, with a third reasonably close to a rough draft. It feels like I have hundreds more to write after that! How many chapters do you hope to have in total?
I'm sure it's an achievable dream - and there are plenty of other people on this forum trying to make similar dreams a reality, so you're in good company!
How did today go for you? Any luck with those elusive words? It was a slow day for me...trying to get a few more bits done before sleep time...
Hope you're feeling a bit better, you'll get there in the end :-)
Morning all! How's it going? Midnight and determined to finish this chapter tonight. Everything aches but it's been a productive day and I'm determined not to have to finish the dregs tomorrow :-)
My timeplan has kind of gone out of the window, which does not help with fending off The Fear (oh yes, it's still there!). I'm on track with some parts of the plan but others have fallen by the wayside. On a positive note, the more I write (and read and think) the more the other chapters are forming when I'm not working on them. The story of my thesis is becoming more coherent, which is a kind of unplannable progress.
I don't use the writing certain amount each day for various reasons. If I have a day mostly reading then it doesn't count as progress but it is much needed! I also write in LaTeX which has no word count or sensible page measure which means I can't watch quantity - quite liberating! Similarly, draft or proper pages? Too many variables! It's all progress, drafts are as important as proper so I'd count it all - but maybe realise that some pages are quicker to achieve than others?
Speaking of which, I have some draft to make proper. And think it's time for a cuppa.
Yes! Particularly after a few weeks of late night panic - body wants to sleep, lights off, brain on at super speed telling me I'll never do it. Joy! Then finally get a good long sleep I feel even worse. Not helped by doing practically no exercise. I try to stay away from too much caffeine as it seems to have a huge effect on me. I have forgotten how much longer you've left? I'm sure if you feel like you've made progress your supervisors will agree so that's a return on your exhaustion! If you want to sleep, you probably need to sleep, particularly given your work schedule. I also think there's an emotional exhaustion to all this that we don't notice as quickly.
I think one combat is to give your body the time it needs to rest and some good food fuel to be able to do the job you ask of it. Having a few breaks in the long days to rest your brain, eat some healthy food as well as the chocolate...mmm...chocolate... I'm lucky as one of my friends is a good infuence trying to get me to do exercise which, although I know will help, I'm terrible at putting off myself. Sometimes the time not working can be very productive in refreshing me to be more productive when I get back to my desk.
Sorry Amy - didn't mean to scare you. My supervisors don't usually have the same opinions so I could ask another one and they'd probably say it was doable! I agree with Sue, your supervisor has set a very high bar for you. I really think this process is individual and can't be generalised between people with different fields, research, support, writing styles, levels of work already completed etc etc. There are so many variables it would be difficult to generalise, particularly when we don't know the intricacies of each others projects. I'm also doing chapters in the style of papers so they may take longer - if you are doing a different thesis style chapters may be quicker. I think 3 months is a tall order, but some people can do these things. I couldn't do that and will spend about 6 months writing my draft (along with quite a large extra piece of data collection); but that's me. You need to find what works for you, your own pace and work to that. Good luck!
I think this sounds like your department aren't looking after their students properly. If they are committed to supporting and completing PhDs then they should support you for the duration. I understand space and resources are limited, but it is not unusual for PhD students to need the writing up year (hence why it exists); and this is a time when peer and sv support can be most important. I don't like the "only a student" perspective; PhD students are a vital part of most reserach teams and shouldn't be treated as second rate to official staff. Oooo, I could get quite worked up on your behalf!
In my team people writing up keep their own desks until after viva. We don't seem to have a lot of new staff and it's quite a small team so maybe the demand is just a lot lower. PhDs who have gone on for several years of writing up after the original 3 years tend to lose their "own" desk, but as far as I know still have access to all necessary library/electronic resources.
I hope this doesn't impact your work too much, good luck
IMO this is a very valid topic - although I'm sure lots of people will just hear "I'm studying music festivals" and draw their own conclusions. I don't know of any relevant studies, but a few thoughts spring to mind. You could look at whether festivals have done their own environmental assessments, these might be slow to get hold of but I imagine the likes of Glastonbury will have done some work into their various footprints. There are also probably social/economic impact studies done; you could look at these and see whether the natural environmental context was or wasn't also investigated. You could also look at what other types are large events have been assessed for their environmental impacts and see if there is any common or missing ground with relation to music festivals; perhaps things like county shows or agricultural shows.
Best of luck with the final stages and finishing your masters
I am having the same marathon feeling, but have made a decision that I will enjoy it, whatever! I can't see that I'll survive the next 6 months being miserable and risk alienating my friends if I'm always being down on what I do, and at the end of the day I'm here because I chose it, so I shouldn't whinge. The reality may be a little different! The downsides are that it can be incredibly dull, generally when it's going slow - and productivity seems to be a slightly temperemental thing. Writing writing reading reading writing writing... Particularly on the weekends when I'd like to do something other than work. The huge fear of whether I can/will actually do this doesn't help - particularly at odd hours of the morning when I ought to be asleep.
On the plus side, I've had some rubbish times in my PhD so I know I won't let it get that bad; this is the bit where I've got enough done to be forming what will hopefully be the end product. I also enjoy the story writing as mentioned below. All these chapters and chunks of work which seemed for so long not to relate to each other are coming together. It's just up to me to make it a story worth reading.
Now I'm off to decide what I'll enjoy about today!
Hi Sue - well I've never managed to spring out of bed at 5:30am but that's just me! However, I did used to work later into the evening and that just wears me out too much now. I think it's a bit of getting older and needing to respect my body's needs as much as my thesis needs.
I am assuming that you're in a different timezone to me (UK) as it says you've gone to the pub at 9:30am...although, with a phd, stranger things have happened...
Good to hear someone else is a planner like me. My supervisor gave me some advice a while ago - if the writing isn't flowing, give up, go and do something else rather than sticking at it when it isn't going to happen. I've heard this advice on here before, but there's something about hearing it from my supervisor which makes it more real!
Anyway...back to it. I am determined to finish this chapter by the end of tomorrow...
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