Skip to main content

Tips for overcoming writing procrastination

This blog post is based on a mini-workshop created for the Doctoral Writing Group. Many thanks to writer friends on Twitter and Facebook who contributed tips.


What's stopping you?


I don't have time!

  • Keep a time diary for a few days.
  • Is there anything you can drop or cut down on?
  • Grab small amounts of time to write e.g. 20mins
  • Can you write while waiting for things or commuting?

I get distracted!

  • Find a space/time to write.
  • Turn off the internet or social media!
    • There are apps that can help you with this.
  • Use a routine or ritual
    • Same time, place, music etc.
  • Timed writing sessions
  • Shut up & write sessions

I don't know what to write...

Planning
  • Have you planned what you want to write?
  • Structure of thesis/article/writing
  • Have you broken it down into small enough sections?
  • Do you know what the argument you want to make is?
  • Do you need to go back to notes/planning/thinking stage?
Lack of confidence/Impostor Syndrome
  • It doesn’t have to be perfect!
  • Write a first draft – get it finished – you can always edit it later.

Specific Techniques

  • Timed writing sessions
    • Pomodoro technique – 25mins writing, 5mins break – repeat
    • Write for a set amount of time every week day
  • Declare your targets - Be accountable
    • Find a writing partner or group (or just a friend)
    • Meet regularly to set targets – provide encouragement & accountability
  • Writing rituals
    • A routine or ritual trains your brain into thinking it is time to write
    • Make sure you are prepared for your writing session - plan what you are going to do and have the research materials needed.

Reflect and Reward

  • It's easy to forget what you've already done and get disheartened 
  • Keep track of, and reflect on, what you’ve achieved
    • as well as what you still need to do…
  • Hit a target?
    • Reward yourself & celebrate (just not for too long…)

University of Leicester - Writing Resources for PGRs



Comments

  1. If you are doing work towards a PhD and you had written a Experts thesis, consider growing on that subject for your thesis. You already are acquainted with the subject and much of the analysis is done. Custom dissertation writing services

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Inserting special characters in EndNote/RefWorks


When importing references into software like EndNote or RefWorks you might find special characters and diacritical marks are stripped out.

You can edit the reference in the software and re-insert the appropriate character in several ways:
1) Copy and past the character in.

2) If you using a Windows computer with a number pad you can hold down the ALT key and type in a numerical code for the character you want e.g. ALT 130 will insert é.

There is a list of Alt Codes available at http://www.alt-codes.net/

Penn State University has an excellent guide to typing in accents and special characters in Windows or Macs. Including Alt codes, Mac codes and how to use the character map/viewer.

These tips can also be applied in other software and web interfaces, as well as in bibliographic software. ☺ = ALT 1

Inserting Citations & References into PowerPoint with EndNote

EndNote X7, which is available on University computers, now has a toolbar for inserting citations and references into PowerPoint.


1)    Open up PowerPoint and place your cursor where you wish to insert a citation or a reference.
2)    Click on the EndNote X7 tab.
3)    Choose the reference style you want to use from the drop-down menu.
4)    Click Insert Citation or Insert Reference
5)    Search for the reference you want or search on * to bring up a list of all your references.
6)    Click on Insert.

You will need to insert the citation and the references separately as this is not a Cite While You Write toolbar like the one in Word.






















Your New Doctoral College Reading Room

The Doctoral College Reading Room, at the front of the first floor of the library, is now designed for use by PGR students and staff only.

The space includes a separate Silent Study area with desks and computers, a quiet area with desks and informal seating, and a bookable group study room.

We would encourage PGR students and staff to make full use of this space.

Masters students now have a separate Graduate Reading Room elsewhere on the first floor.

As part of the new arrangements there is now a Consultation Room, which we are also using for upcoming events, including Shut Up & Write! and Research Data Drop-in Clinics.

*****

*****