The most useful textbook & academic writing posts of the week: June 11, 2015

I think it’s safe to say that summer has write. finish things. go for walks. read a lot & outside your comfort zone. stay interested. daydream. write.arrived—hot sunny days filled with the sounds of kids outside playing (or at least that’s what I imagine I would hear if I lived in a neighborhood and not in the middle of nowhere). Summer is by far my favorite time of year. I feel much more motivated to reach all of the goals I’ve set for myself when the sun is shining and the temperature outside is nearer to 80°F than 0°F. How about you? Do you feel you accomplish more in the summer? Do you stay on track with your writing? A few of the posts this week will, I think, help you stay on track with your writing this summer, while still actually enjoying summer. And, as always, happy writing! [Read more…]

The most useful textbook & academic writing posts of the week: June 4, 2015

I spent a good 40 minutes writing this week’s lead in paragraph. keep calm it's only a first draftIt was slightly witty (or at least I’m telling myself that it was) and related to one of the articles highlighted this week. In the end, it was crap. There was simply no point. I was trying to explain the stress June brings and how it is a struggle to fit everything into my day and how that relates to you, as a writer, with a job and a life trying to squeeze in writing time. Alas, there was no amount of editing that could save it. Had it been written on paper it would have been crumpled up and tossed in the direction of the garbage can only to, as if in one last laugh at me, land a full foot away on the floor. Instead, it’s forever going to sit in a word document highlighted in awful yellow (something I do with text I wish to change before finalizing a post). All I can say this week is, I hope your writing endeavors have been more accomplished than mine. And whether they have or haven’t been, the articles below will at least give you advice and encouragement that tomorrow is a fresh start. Or, if nothing else, that you aren’t alone in this struggle.

Happy writing! [Read more…]

The most useful textbook & academic writing posts of the week: April 17, 2015

There are SO many great articlesdon't give up on your article in this week’s most useful textbook & academic writing posts! I’m so excited about what’s below that I’m not even going to write a long introductory paragraph. I’m just going to say, I hope you enjoy these articles as much as I did and of course: Happy writing! [Read more…]

Join us for the April 19 Virtual Dissertation Writing Boot Camp

bootcampGain access to resources, accountability check-ins, and support and encouragement as you work to complete your dissertation, by joining us for TAA’s April Virtual Dissertation Writing Boot Camp, which will be held Sunday, April 19, 2015. Registration deadline is April 16. Register today. Free for TAA members!

The boot camps, led by Ashley Sanders, Digital Scholar Librarian at the Claremont Colleges and a doctoral candidate in History at Michigan State University, each focus on a different aspect of the writing process, including: [Read more…]

Registration is now open for February TAA virtual dissertation writing boot camp

bootcampGain access to resources, accountability check-ins, and support and encouragement as you work to complete your dissertation, by joining us for TAA’s February Virtual Dissertation Writing Boot Camp, which will be held Sunday, February 15, 2015. Registration deadline is February 12. Register

This month’s boot camp will feature a 30-minute webinar presented by Ashley Sanders, a Digital Scholarship Librarian at the Claremont Colleges Library, and PhD Candidate in History at Michigan State University. In this mini-webinar, Ashley will present ways to utilize visual tools to clarify your thoughts, make connections between important ideas, and improve your writing. Attending this mini-webinar will give you tips and tools to put the research on visual thinking to work for you in your writing.  [Read more…]

Write with POWER: Join us for September virtual dissertation writing boot camp

bootcampJoin us for TAA’s second boot camp, which will be held September 20-21 and features a mini webinar entitled “Writing with POWER”, presented by Margarita Huerta, Assistant Professor of English Language Learning/Early Childhood Education at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. As a postdoctoral research assistant, Huerta was integrally involved with P.O.W.E.R. Writing Services program at Texas A&M University, a program that provides “motivational and instrumental support for graduate students’ and faculty’s academic writing”. In this webinar she will share tools and strategies from the P.O.W.E.R. writing program that can help you jump-start your dissertation project. You can learn more about P.O.W.E.R., which stands for Promoting Outstanding Writing for Excellence in Research, by visiting power.tamu.edu. Register for the September boot camp. Free for members. Non-members pay only $15 and can participate in all 9 boot camps.

Writing Accountability PartnerNEW! Registrants of TAA’s Dissertators United Chapter Writing Boot Camps will be invited to sign up to get connected with an accountability partner. Knowing that you need to communicate your progress to someone else can provide the accountability you need to keep your dissertation on track! Sign up instructions will be included in the boot camp registration confirmation email.

10 Ways to overcome challenges to writing your dissertation

frustrated authorThe top challenges participants of TAA’s August Dissertation Writing Boot Camp indicated that they were facing in completing their dissertation included time management, staying focused, writer’s block, holding themselves accountable to deadlines, and anxiety.

Boot Camp Leader and Dissertators United Chapter Chair Ashley Sanders, who is also working on completing her dissertation, said that one of the strategies she finds really helpful to overcome the anxiety she feels when working on her dissertation is to start the day by free writing in her journal.

“I mean, completely free writing,” she said. “Whatever comes to mind I pour out on the page for 10 to 15 minutes. It helps me work through any anxiety I’m facing or worries or fears by taking the time to write out things I’m grateful for in my life. That starts me out with a positive mindset to begin tackling what can be some very challenging tasks, because I’m much more focused on what’s going well, what I’m thankful for, and all the good things that are happening in my life.” [Read more…]