Had a meeting with my dissertation supervisor today, and came out feeling much better than I have in the past few
weeks about my ongoing proposal! Probably a good thing, as it’s due in 2 1/2 weeks… *gulp*
I’ve also started reading “Writing your Dissertation in 15 minutes a day”, which I’m finding surprisingly useful. I’m not that far into it, but it’s already given me some good tips. The main one being that the best way to get into writing your dissertation is to… write. Crazy, no? I have to admit, stupid as it may sound that actually isn’t an approach I’ve tried before. I’m firmly of the “sit down in front of a blank sheet of paper then stare at it until you cry” school of thought. That usually works about as well as you might expect. I’m actually not a bad writer, but the whole “getting started” thing just kills me. The writer of the above title suggests just writing anything, but making sure that you write every day, even if it’s only for 15 minutes. She recommends keeping a diary, so that even if the only thing you write is “I really don’t know where this idea is going”, at least you’ve written something. I like the idea: practice makes perfect, and I do find that once I’ve got into the habit of getting pen to paper, the ideas flow easier. I’m going to give it a try (not all on here – don’t panic! I have a wiki that I’m collating all of my thesis material in, I’ll probably stick most of it in there).
In other news, I was at the British Library today (needed a few bits and pieces that weren’t in my uni library) and was reminded of just how non-user friendly the book/journal ordering system is. Seriously BL, what’s that about? The whole ordering through the catalogue system is a good idea, but very poorly executed. It’s counter-intuitive, and the helpful instruction guides provided really aren’t that helpful. Even once you’ve ordered something, there’s nothing that tells you whether it’s been ordered successfully – it just disappears from your record. Sort it out, BL! (On the plus side, the staff in the reading room today were lovely – had a bad experience the first time I used the BL, it put me off for a while, but I think it was probably a one-off. Everyone has bad days, right?)