I met with my thesis advisor at PSU again this afternoon, and I am feeling encouraged about the progress I'm making. There are days when I think, I'll never be able to do this. Sometimes I have to talk myself into sitting down to write just one paragraph.
But bit by bit it is coming along, one chapter at a time. Today my advisor and I went over Chapter 3, and he was encouraging. Yes. I think I can do this.
My goal is to work with the 200 pages I wrote last summer (rough, rough, rough...) and shape that material into 20-ish chapters. Last night I finished the next draft of Chapter 4, which I turned in today so he can read it prior to our next meeting. When I get feedback, it goes into a notebook with numbered dividers for each chapter. I'm not going back to do much revision just yet. I need to keep writing the chapters. If I can write one chapter a week, I will be wrapping up this phase at the end of the summer. Then I can start all over again, one chapter a week, to do the next round of revisions, which will bring me to February or so. Then I can quickly do one last polish to have the whole thing ready for the thesis committee's review a year from now, in spring term 2012.
Ummm...that's ambitious. We'll see if it comes together by then.
But it feels good to be thinking about Chapter 5 this week!
In another update, I've compromised about the photo wall at the house. The dining rooms are staying the way they were in this post, but I've put up a few old favorite family photos on a different wall, in the family room. This wall doesn't get as much traffic, so it doesn't feel as constantly cluttered to me as the dining room wall did.
(For those of you who were wondering, the photos that have come down from the walls have not gone away. They are tucked into an album, where I can enjoy them and share them with others any time.)