luciab: (Default)
what it must be like to write an entire book. I mean, besides the fact that I have absolutely no ideas about what kind of book I'd write, or the first vague notion of a plot (I know, that doesn't stop a lot of people, but I try to be a little bit different) or how to write dialog or any other those details, just the sheer enormity of it astounds me.

I just finished a 17-page paper for a class, and also it's the basis for the paper I'm handing in for another class. It will actually be a combination of papers one and two: one was mainly about ink, but also had to discuss preservation issues. Paper two was about paper and parchment and how they react to the ink and how the combination should be preserved. So I started last night on combining them, and damn. I keep finding sentences that need to be rearranged, or paragraphs that need severe editing, and I wonder-- how does anybody ever got DONE? Seems like you could re-read and edit, and re-edit, forever. And I know from my painting experience, if you keep on doing that too long, everything turns to mud and it's a big amorphous mass. Or mess.

Not to mention the fun of combining two things; since I had to write about preservation in paper one, that meant I had to write about what the ink was ON that should be preserved, so I had to cover the same ground twice. I did my damnedest to not repeat myself, which means that I managed to come up with a few things the second time around that I really liked, and the second one is more extensive. And the two papers are necessarily organized differently so I'm having a hell of a time. I guess I thought it would be a matter of inserting, and wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am. So to speak.

Once I get them combined, I'm also using that as the basis for my class presentation on the paper-and-parchment paper. Maybe. That just needs to be a few minutes, so it probably doesn't make a lot of difference which version I use.

I've got my apple pie made to take to [livejournal.com profile] harleenquinzell's house for dinner; time to go make the pumpkin-with-gingersnap-crust-one. Yum.
luciab: (Default)
I just finished my paper. Whew! I got it all except the concluding sentence last night. When I was reading/studying for the exam for the same class, though, I found another point that would have been good to use.... except I would have needed to add bits all the way through the paper to tie it all in. I started a final paragraph to try to include some of it without re-writing the whole paper, but couldn't make it work. This morning I read it all fresh and realized that it's fine without the extra bits, ditched the potential addition, and came up with a good closing within a few minutes. Can't tell you how happy that makes me.

I don't see how real writers like [livejournal.com profile] madlori do it. I kept thinking of more stuff I wanted to put in, and suddenly it seemed like everything I read had some relation to the paper and should be included somehow. The original assignment was for 12-15 pages, but one of the other students whined it down to 10 pages minimum. I wound up with 13 and, as noted in an earlier entry, I think I could easily have done 20 pages by including some other tangents that fit nicely into the overall theme.

I did get half my reading done yesterday. Two chapters down and two to go. Since this is "studying for the final" instead of "skimming to make it through class" I've been making notes on some of the more important ideas. If I'd been a good girl during the semester and done more "studying" and less "skimming" I would (a) be more familiar with this stuff, and (b) have notes from before that I could review. Oops.
luciab: (Default)
So, I'm working on my term paper, due in 10 days. The last time I was in college, term papers were always 20 pages long, so I think I somehow had that in my head when I did my research. I definitely have enough stuff copied and studied for a 20 page paper! This one is only supposed to be 10-15 pages, though, and I have 10 pages now. It's on "the historic mission of the public library." The part I've written is the "historic" part, which is what I said my paper would be on. If I were to expand, I would want to go into what current mission statements say, and talk about what wild-eyed radical librarians are advocating for public libraries to do. I've got the stuff printed out, underlined and noted.... and it's really the part I'm more interested in. Getting this much done has been like pulling teeth, though, so I'm reluctant to start expanding the scope. Although, maybe it's been so hard because it's the part I'm not really interested in.

Even if I stop the body of the paper here, I still have the problem of wrapping it all up. I've told 'em what I'm gonna tell 'em, I've told 'em what I've got to say; now I need to tell 'em what I told 'em. So to speak. Would that be easier or harder if I added a couple of pages on the current status? I can kinda almost see that... I planned to finish this sucker this weekend. I want to have next weekend to study for finals on the 11th and 12th. Maybe I'll give it a shot and see if it's as hard going as the rest of the paper was. If so, I'll just wrap up the historic part.

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Susan Arthur

February 2011

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