6 mths to go - count down's on!!


Thanks Alpacalover: managed to make a start on the big envelope on Tuesday night, working on it for about an hour, and getting half way through the easy fixes. I can only ever work for up to an hour a day now, so that was good going for me. Couldn't manage anything yesterday, but hoping for another hour's worth later on this evening.

Won't be submitting until March though. I need to allow time to hear back from my other supervisor, and am also obviously - as usual - working rather slowly.


hi all
Can I just begin by wishing you all a wonderful 2010.... and off course  hope we will remember this as the year of completion!
Didn't post much in the "10 months to go" thread.... but here I am working as much as i know how. Praise and applause to all labourers on this peace train!


i just wanted to run something past you - hope that's ok!
I have just sat down and written myself a timetable for the next few months with deadlines for chapter completions and I'm just wondering whether I have been a bit over-ambitious. I have set myself deadlines for my remaining chapters every four weeks, e.g. chapter 1 end of this month, chapter 2 end of next month. I only have a few chapters left and reckon that if I puch myself I can get a first draft ready by the last May bank holiday. When are you planning to have a first draft up and ready? I want to leave myself several weeks to go over it and finalise things.

Also is there anyone else that began 1st July 2007? Sounds strange but I am unsure of exactly when my studentship ends!! I have emailed my postgraduate office but they haven't repleid yet, i.e. i'm not sure if I finish beginning of July or the end of July! Anyone in the same boat? I want to know as I want to know my absolute deadline for getting this finished!


Hi Tsipat, welcome to the thread! Yes, this will indeed be the year of finishing, hopefully graduation (I may not graduate till next year, due to the archaic way PhDs are examined in Australia).

And well done Bilbo! Keep going! Hope you get lots done in your one hour blocks - you're an inspiration.

DrSeeker, I'm hoping to have a full draft done by end April, and most of these chapters will be in their second draft, except for the hard analysis chapter and conclusion which I've left to the end by necessity. So it sounds like we're on the same time frame. You might need to think however, about the need for a second and third draft too. My supervisor is making me rewrite everything extensively - and fair enough too, as the first draft got the ideas down, the second really develops the themes and is making them all hang together. Then I'm going to do a third draft which I hope will just be proofing and tweaking to strengthen arguments a bit more.

You might work differently to me and be in a different discipline where you don't need to do so many drafts - or be a better writer and not need to rewrite as extensively as me! But maybe something you should consider.


======= Date Modified 11 Jan 2010 10:24:33 =======
Hello! How're we all going?

Have been back in the 'real' workforce work a week, going OK studying and working. Am seriously procrastinating at the moment - it's sooooo hot here still, even tho it's almost 9.30, and I can't concentrate. Has also been a spate of burglaries in the neighbourhood, neighbours right behind us just recently. Makes me very jittery - think I'm going to have to take my laptop to work with me...

Came up with a great idea for a post-doc over the w'end - now I just have to finish, and make sure I graduate this year!

Ah well, too hot to think, so maybe I'd better start that referencing I've been putting off (for 3 years!!).

Best to everyone!

(snowman) This is for me, and any others in the southern hemisphere who are sweltering at the moment...think cool thoughts...think cool thoughts....


Good luck with the referencing Sue. Sooner you get going on it the quicker it will be over.

I'm not doing bad. Been trying to sort out arrangements for my viva: I'll need slightly unusual ones due to disability, so have put in a formal request for these. And been filling out the form to get the examiners process underway (external already agreed). Was a bit freaked out to read on the form that vivas at my university are usually within 6 weeks of submission. Ye gads May! Also managed a little more thesis feedback processing at the weekend (up to page 160 - wooh!) so will be pushing ahead with that over the next few days, moving on to tackling the "yuck" pile! And going to arrange a meeting with my supervisor soon to discuss a few issues.


Hi everyone!
It's good to read posts by others who are at the same stage, the final stage... I had a meeting with my sup today, and it has sunk in that I will be finishing in a few months time - I mean, it was obvious, as I have been planning for a spring deadline for a while now, but finally, it has sunk in on a different level (cant really explain). I still have lots to do, and I am clearly not finished yet, but it's all getting there. It's a bit like knitting a jumper, and you have done all the pieces, now you just need to sew the arms to the main body bit, add the decorative buttons on the front etc, i.e. it's all coming together in a way that you can actually see the end result. It's exciting! But also a bit scary..:$
I do feel a bit strange these days - on the one hand, the prospect of finishing (and all the euphoria with that) and on the other hand, the daily, inc. mundane tasks of e.g. sorting all references out, formatting bits here and there, rewording text, mentally wrangling over figures/arguments, seemingly never-ending issues with something etc. So, there is excitment, but also the pressure to get it all done. I am exhausted somehow... so it is good to have you guys and to read about how you are getting on..


Hi Bilbo

That's very exciting!!! May - wow!! That's great! I know the viva will be hard and stressful, but at least you'll be Dr Bilbo soon! If I finish in June, I have to wait months for the thesis to get marked, then do corrections, then resubmit, then hopefully pass, then wait until the next graduation ceremony at uni - so unlikely to happen this year and will be a miracle if I make the Nov graduation. Would much rather be over and done with, so I can move onto the next stage of life. So - think yourself lucky Bilbo!;-)

And Poppy, sounds like it's all coming together for you - go! Keep going! I'm not as advanced as you, but think I'll start to be excited when I've done the first draft. Was looking at a rewritten chapter, with a whole bunch of little things I need to follow up, and thinking that yes, these types of things will take ages.

Have almost finished an article with my sup too, so that's good. And need to do a powerpoint presentation for a conference paper this week - all distracting really, but good.

Productive vibes to you!


Hi Sue, other fellow posters,

inspiring thread, nice to read about people's progress. Slowly but surely we are all going in the right direction.

I have just sent a draft thesis to my supervisors and am waiting for feedback. I am sure there will be several corrections required, but a least I have managed that.

I am also trying to solve some bureaucratic issues regarding university regulations, forms etc. All seem formalities, yet best to address these now.

Sue, I am amazed how much you do, regarding the rewriting and other tasks you take on. Does it not get too much?

Bilbo, well done! Good that the viva is coming and that you have nearly completed the whole process.


Hey Rick - a draft thesis - excellent!! That must be so nice!!:-) Well done you!

My workload is manageable. I love my topic and am a bit of a workaholic, and mostly like doing these things. There are opportunities around, and I think I should grab as many of them as I can. I'm trying to change career later in life, so don't have time to waste. I've had the occasional melt down and then have scaled things back, but at the moment it's going prettty well. However, I am really looking forward to getting a bit better work/life balance after I submit - for now tho, must push on!


Oh dear, I'm in a panic. I went away over christmas, but rather than invigorating me for the final push I've come back anxious and disinterested :-( It just all feels too much, I haven't got so much as a firm introduction outline and I'm still in the lab.

No one in my group has finished anything close to time, but I really wanted to. I feel like I've run out of steam and even trying to plan feels too much.

God that was a pathetic vent. On the upside, I do feel a little better for admitting it to someone. Time to revisit that gantt chart methinks....


Hi Teek

Don't stress!! Let your guilt go, it doesn't help, start from now. Remember, take little steps, just do a little bit of work, start making that plan. Just get yourself to do that, just do that one task. Then a bit later, start doing another task...you can do this! You've come this far, breathe, calm down, and take it one step at a time. Don't freak out over the big picture. Don't give up yet! Do your plan, and see if it's still realistic for you to finish on time. Let us know how you go. Good luck!


Hi Teek,
I feel like that sometimes too! The end never seems in sight and the amount of work insurmountable - You are not alone! I sat down the other day and wrote myself small deadlines for every 3 weeks or so and that feels a lot more manageable.
Just wanted to let you know you are nto alone!


Thanks DrSeeker

It warms the cockles of my little science heart to read of your solidarity, thank you :-)
I've been writing detailed plans for months now, but they always seem to be a paper exercise as I simply don't cover the writing goals. Now those goals have been compressed until I'm aiming at producing a chapter a week on top of lab work - I'm confused but not deluded, I know I can't achieve that! But you're right, the sense of being overwhelmed has smacked us all on the nose and most of us get through, just need to keep pushing.


Really liked the knitting analogy Poppy. I used to knit a lot and that does echo my experiences.

Well done on the draft Rick! I seem to be forever be doing corrections/feedback on my drafts, but there must come an end eventually. I've just pasted my supervisor's latest feedback into an online to do list, and have started crossing things off. Once that's all done that's it. Finito!

Thanks Sue. I'm not in a rush to finish, apart from beating my absolute uni deadline of submitting by March. I don't know if I would be able to graduate this year, but if I get through I'll consider myself to be a doctor as soon as I can, with just i's to dot and t's to cross.

Good luck Teek. If I was you I'd just focus with getting on with the writing. It doesn't sound as though drawing up plans is too productive for you. But maybe the terror will hit at some point and you'll be spurred into superhuman action? Good luck anyway.

And nice to hear from DrSeeker too. Good luck. Nice to have someone else in the final stages.