September 2013 Finish - Hopefully!

Avatar for Caterpillar27

Scrap that... Just had a phone call from the school, now going to collect my poorly middle child!!!!

Avatar for BlackTrinity

I'm 4 months into year 3,funding runs out at the end of July 2013 and need to finish on time. Still got loads of lab work to do and write at the same time. Good Luck to everyone!!

Trin x

Avatar for Eska

Hi all! I have had a tricky month with food poisoning, nuisance neighbours and some financial strife. So I am a month behind, still working on the 6k chapter and my outline... Christmas is my deadline son am aiming for 20th and hope I can catch up!


Me too, because the funding runs out for me too!


Hiya guys, I hope to write some 3K words just before Christmas. Quite struggling by the way, with kids and housework. I just managed 300 words yesterday...yikes !

Avatar for Caterpillar27

Good luck with your goals Boo. I did my own transcribing and it took (what seemed like) forever!!!! I'm glad to have finished it now. My goal at the moment is to get as much analysis done before January so I can start the new year with a full on writing schedule. I don't think I'll be able to complete my analysis by then though, I'm just hoping to be a fair way through it.

I'm really starting to panic about next year - I have the vast majority of my thesis to write - no chapters drafted yet - just lots of rough notes and 2 draft papers, which will be the starting points for 2 chapters.

It seems like a mountain ahead of me at the moment - let's hope I can climb it!!!


Quote From maccle:
Quote From eska:

I find the hardest thing is the amount of formulating I'm doing. For example I've been working on a 6k chapter for the last few weeks and the process has taken the framing of my thesis to another level - that's great but it's much more time consuming than just writing 6k words... The next chapter I'll be doing - which I hope to have finished by Crimbo or thereabouts will be similar. I also find that sometimes I need a day or so inbetween bouts of writing and editing for my ideas to formulate.

I'm definitely finding that framing is the hardest bit (not that the other stuff is easy)! Trying to figure out how to structure such a mass of information... I'm developing a massive hatred of 'linearity', and feel like I can't possibly explain something properly/ convince my imaginary reader of something in one chapter, without their having imaginarily read all the later chapters too! It feels like a great challenge at the moment, and I'm sure that once (/ if) I do figure out the right structure it will be very satisfying, but it's just so frustrating and slow at the moment!

Sorry, just needed to vent there :p Hope everyone else is doing well :-)

Hiya, just a wee bump of this thread to see how everyone's going with their work for finish in September!
I'm going through this exact thing right now where it seems to be taking me forever to establish my thesis structure - my supervisor keeps sending it back and I've worked on it for over 2 months now - which is quite frustrating to say the least! I am just venting but I really hope there is light at the end of this tunnel!!!

Avatar for Eska

Hi Tane, thanks for bringing the thread back! I've just 'cracked it' with my research questions and structure, according to my supervisor. I have a 10,000 word outline - or mini thesis which I'm doing some last minute tweaks on now. I have one chapter (7.5 k) that is almost finished and another (8k) that is half done. That's basically what I've written since the thread started. I also have two longer chapters (16k each) finished, which leaves two further long chapters of about 16k words to write from almost scratch, plus my introduction (which will be drawn from the outline) and my conclusion. My thesis will be 85-90k words. I really, really wish it had worked out shorter! I have about 55k words near to final draft... One girl I know only wrote 50k words for her entire thesis. Plus I'm sute examiners like shorter documents.

I am hoping the assembly stage won't take too long. Anyone any idea how long it takes?

Avatar for Maccle

Well done Eska, that sounds like you're making great progress :) Does that long outline represent you overcoming the formulating problems you were having earlier? I'm curious, does it cover the points you'll make and your structure for every chapter, so that now you just have to sit down and essentially fill it out? That would be a great thing to have got sorted, taking lots of the pain out of writing!
Tanemahuta I know that must be frustrating, but just think about how useful it's going to be too: far better to take the time to really sort out your structure now, than to come up with a full draft that doesn't hold together at all - hopefully this will make your writing quicker too.


Eska - that sounds amazing and I wish I was at your stage in my writing now but I know that's still probably a few months off! All I can do is to take each day as it comes and tackle the work one section at a time... I must say though, working on the research structure has been enormously a beneficial process (although it's nowhere near perfect) because it helps me to see my thesis as a whole more clearly. It's ridiculous how blind you can be sometimes with your own work but that's what supervisors are for right? And at least once you get there you'll be happy that you've done it. :)

I'm also curious as to what your outline consists of - my equivalent would be an executive summary of the key points that include the description of a research problem, research proposition and theoretical framework, and an explanation of key research objectives. This would be followed by a research structure section that describes what is included in each chapter to help to guide the reader through the document and understand why you've organized it the way you have. My one dilemma was in figuring out how research structure of your thesis is different from the research process (the journey of how you did your research) but I realized that with the humanities and social sciences thesis what's important for your reader is not what you did (steps 1 through to step n+1) but what your overall message is and how you've constructed that argument through various tools of research. You can argue for alternative approaches but at least for me that's how I have come to rationalize my work!

Do you guys think I'm on the right track here?


Hi guys, I managed to write half a chapter (5k words), so I will try to write another 5 k words after the Easter break.

I am so not loving the cold snap at the moment. I thought we could turn off the heater now that it's almost spring.Summer seems so far away at this moment...sigh.

Avatar for Eska

Thank you for your encouraging words. It doesn't feel like I'm so advanced - all I can see us 30k plus left to write and the assembling. I think I may have misled you in my earlier post - I've been working on the outline and two shorter chapters since September - and the outline is a re-draft, although it is unrecognisable now.

The long outline is just what you describe. There is an introduction of about 5k which will probably form my final intro, this includes my research questions and a lengthy justification for my thesis structure, which is unusual; then there are about 1-2k on each unfinished chapter; and a page for the finished ones. I basically give an abridged version of the whole thing, including chapter structure, what the key arguments are and where I am going to lead my readers. It's been hard work and a long process, but I do feel much better about the thesis now. Fingers crossed it'll be ok!


Hi Eska, so essentially you've given yourself a year to write up your phd - including editing and proofing? From reading the posts from those who are in the write up stages of their phd I get the impression that they write one draft, get it checked by their supervisor for editing suggestions and structure, and submit maybe 3-6 months from the point they have a full draft. I guess it depends on the discipline, whether you're writing a quant or qual (including those that are mix of qual & quant), and I thought I would be done by now but my supervisor keeps telling me I should spend a good amount of time of at least 6-12 months to fix my work. I get depressed thinking about how long I still have to go even though I know that a year is not a long time in the big scheme of things. I think motivation is just what I need and that's why I've started to jump on the thread with you guys!

Avatar for Eska

Yes Tanemahuta I have given myself a year, but think perhaps getting it to a complete thesis first draft stage by September is more likely... fingers crossed.

Yes it's good to chat with people with the same goals!


Eska - I'm with you! Good luck on your work today!