Budgeting Time for Writing Journal Note

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265489164158

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Budgeting Time for Writing Journal Note

Postby 265489164158 » Thu Jan 11, 2018 11:53 am

I am hoping to get an idea of how much time I should plan to spend (total) researching and writing a note which will fulfill both my journal requirement and school writing requirement. I have a professor supervising me and will earn two units and a letter grade. I have a general idea of my topic, but have only done a few hours of research, so far. I have ten hours per week blocked out to spend on this. I am a strong student, but not a fast writer, so I want to plan accordingly. It would be nice if it were selected for publication, but not crucial. I am more concerned about receiving a good grade and fulfilling the requirement.

So, for those of you who have written notes, how much time did you spend total, and how was that time roughly apportioned between research, writing, and editing? I have been given no guidance from my journal, the school, or the professor on this, so I would be grateful for any help. Thanks.

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SmokeytheBear

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Re: Budgeting Time for Writing Journal Note

Postby SmokeytheBear » Thu Jan 11, 2018 12:12 pm

There is a psychology to writing and it is very individual, especially if you are writing a note, which will require a lot of research, reading, and writing. I think telling yourself that you are going to budget 10 hours a week is a good plan, but writing like this does not often follow a plan. You sit down and research for a few hours and you hit gold, so you spend five hours on it. The next day you sit down to write but for some reason the juices aren't flowing so you only spend an hour on it. Then it comes to the writing stage. You sit down to write and, again, it's not working so you bail after two hours. The next day the sun is shining and you start making hay, so you write for five hours.

Point is the writing process rarely follows a logical and predictable flow or schedule. Saying that you need 10 hours a week is admirable, but some weeks you might only eek out 5 hours because, whereas some weeks you might grind out 20 hours.

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bretby

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Re: Budgeting Time for Writing Journal Note

Postby bretby » Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:08 am

265489164158 wrote:I am hoping to get an idea of how much time I should plan to spend (total) researching and writing a note which will fulfill both my journal requirement and school writing requirement. I have a professor supervising me and will earn two units and a letter grade. I have a general idea of my topic, but have only done a few hours of research, so far. I have ten hours per week blocked out to spend on this. I am a strong student, but not a fast writer, so I want to plan accordingly. It would be nice if it were selected for publication, but not crucial. I am more concerned about receiving a good grade and fulfilling the requirement.

So, for those of you who have written notes, how much time did you spend total, and how was that time roughly apportioned between research, writing, and editing? I have been given no guidance from my journal, the school, or the professor on this, so I would be grateful for any help. Thanks.


I think 10 hours a week sounds fine, provided you actually stick to it and put in the time. This is especially important early on. Assuming your note is due in early May, I would recommend the following schedule:

mid Jan - mid Feb: research and outline. Keep excellent track of your sources from the beginning. Nothing worse than having to duplicate work because you forgot the source of an idea, quotation, etc.
mid Feb-early April: aim to write a (relatively) complete draft and show it to your advisor for feedback, start on your citations.
early April - mid April: incorporate feedback and do additional research in the areas your advisor (inevitably) tells you need more work.
mid April - early May: get feedback on any new sections/dramatically revised sections from your advisor, finish citations, and revise the whole note.

If you stick to this, it should be pretty painless. You really want to avoid backloading the work when you will have exams, etc. to worry about.

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Re: Budgeting Time for Writing Journal Note

Postby 265489164158 » Thu Jan 25, 2018 11:38 am

bretby wrote: If you stick to this, it should be pretty painless. You really want to avoid backloading the work when you will have exams, etc. to worry about.


Thank you for this. I really appreciate it. I am learning that my 10 hours a week has so far only been 6 [sigh], but I need to keep plugging away and finding smaller blocks of time so I can stay focused. I think I have a solid thesis now and the beginnings of an outline.

CanadianWolf

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Re: Budgeting Time for Writing Journal Note

Postby CanadianWolf » Thu Jan 25, 2018 12:12 pm

I agree with Smokey the Bear's comment above. Research & writing tends to be a type of work product that varies from one person to the next. Nevertheless, if scheduling a certain number of hours per week works for you, then do it.

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Re: Budgeting Time for Writing Journal Note

Postby 265489164158 » Sun Feb 18, 2018 3:59 pm

CanadianWolf wrote:I agree with Smokey the Bear's comment above. Research & writing tends to be a type of work product that varies from one person to the next. Nevertheless, if scheduling a certain number of hours per week works for you, then do it.


Agreed, I am learning a lot about how I actually prefer to work in this process. The research works better in shorter bursts, while the writing goes better if I can immerse myself in it and not come up for air. Because I have a rough draft due for my journal tonight, I have been pretty immersed this weekend.

As a reference point (in case other students have a similar question to mine), I have spent 20 hours just researching and outlining, then another 29 hours (so far) writing (with more research mixed in, as needed. I have 5800 words, exclusive of 190 end notes, so far.



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