Thursday, April 9, 2009

Spring Writing Challenge!

You know, National Novel Writing Month is fine and all, (adapted for academics as International Dissertation Writing Month by some), but November is just a sucky time for it. Not only is it dark and cold and depressing, but I couldn't participate in the 2008 challenge because I was spending all my energy on job applications. (for 2007 info and my participation, click here.)

Therefore I bring you a new challenge! Or me, I bring me a new challenge. Or just need to get off the damn couch and stop sleeping every afternoon it rains. Anyway, challenge! Yes. Not a challenge as in, I hereby challenge you to a duel to the death, but as in, there is nothing like a little friendly competition and communal no-pain-no-gain to get you started and to keep you moving.

And thus, da tada! The Magical Month of Academic Publishing Challenge 2009! (Could someone make me a button for MMAP Challenge 2009? Preferably with a fancy rainbow motif? I no longer have a working image manipulating program. Alas.)


The Timeline: from April 10 to May 10, one Magical Month. (No, why bother waiting until a nice round number or the first of a month? We've got to go now now now! And yes, the "magical" theme might be better for March Madness, but I didn't have the idea then ok? Ferchrissakes.)

The Challenge: Choose a chapter, previously rejected or R&R paper, conference paper, old seminar paper, or other lump of prose you really want to revise and send out for publication. Commit to revising it for the month of April-plus-a-little-bit and make concrete plans to work on it at least 15 minutes per day. (An hour would be ideal, but make sure to at least read over and do some little edits every day.) Post your effort to your blog (notice I did not say progress) and encourage your fellow challenge-ees.

The Benefits: At the end of a month you will have an article much closer to publication, if not ready to send out even, and have the boost of confidence that running a race working steadily away at a project can give! (Ok, a month is not 12 weeks, and I'm doubtful that the Belcher workbook can actually bring you all the way to publication in just 12 weeks, but it's still a big chunk of progress baby!)


The Drawbacks: What, that you'll have completed a huge amount of work on your article? That you'll have something ready to send out for publication? Sure, it may get rejected --- that's the name of the academic game! Deal! That you'll have lost a whole hour of facebook time every day for a month or be seriously deprived for naps? Buck up people and get cracking! Go go go!

Who's with me?

16 comments:

Horace said...

Well, I already have an article deadline in April, but I'm behind on it, and writing along with you wouuld help me get motivated, so I'm in, and will lend you and any other participants any acceptance jujus I might have leftover...

Let's rock it.

kermitthefrog said...

Alas, if it were a month later I'd totally be in, but this month has been designated (yet another) writing month.

heu mihi said...

I am more or less in! Yes! I say "more or less" because, instead of writing for publication exclusively, I must write a conference paper and a presentation. But I also have an article that's supposed to be en route to send-out-able, and I'd like to work on that. So can I call mine the Magical Miscellaneous Writing Project Period of Time?

ms. baby said...

I am also roughly following Wendy's journal article in 12 weeks (v. compressed) to try to jam something out--magical month of academic publishing it is!

Belle said...

Count me in. Lots of things that need to be revised or even invented. You would choose finals month, right?

Sisyphus said...

Belle --- ha! It is only week three of spring here. I'm in school until late June, so noooo complaining about how your semester is almost over and summer is almost here!

Ink said...

I'll try to make you a button and send it via email. :)

waterkant said...

I am joining you!

Katrina said...

Sounds good! November is a sucky time for NaNoWrimo, a few years back some of us NaNoWriMoers set up the May version, known as NaNoWriMay or 'May-As-Well-NaNoWriMo'. It's a few years since I've participated though.

canuck_grad said...

I am totally in, except instead of stuff to publish it's stuff for course requirements. I have these two "courses" - one in which i had to work on a research project and one where i learned how to a stats technique. I've completed all the work for both of them, but have to write up the results of both to get course credit. I also have to continue working on my dissertation of course - but I'll make finishing these course write-ups my goal for the challenge.

Good Enough Woman said...

I'm in! But for me it's a piece of writing that I need to give to my PhD supervisor.

Maude Lebowski said...

i'm going to give it a go. i always give it a go. i'm going to give it a go again.

count me in.

Earnest English said...

Count me in, though for the first couple days my effort is going to be in grading, grading, grading because I suck, suck, suck.

Let magical work month: BEGIN!

unknownadjunct said...

Great idea! I'd be all over this, but am in the last stages of dissertation (defending on May 4).
I'll be cheering you all on though!
- Unknown Adjunct

Tree of Knowledge said...

What with exams starting and a conference coming up, I'm out. But I too will cheer everyone on (at least in my own head and over here). It seems like a great idea!

Lucky Jane said...

Urgh. The only writing it seems I do these days consists of paper comments that go unheeded. So I'm in. Thanks for doing this!