Series note: The following post is part of the Rutgers Graduate Student Blog Throwback Thursday blog series, in which we will repost one of our most popular blog posts from years past.
At this point in the semester, I am surrounded by individuals trying to ride out the wave of work that surges through a semester. The most important task is the one that is due next, and those long term projects are put off until it is too close to really give them the time they deserve. For example, learning science and doing science are important, but so is communicating it. Between courses, exams, teaching, lab work, mentoring, family and other commitments, how do grad students find time for writing? One of my greatest struggles is determining where in the “To do” list to prioritize this long term task.
While it may seem like this is something that would come at the end of a large study or after a great deal of research/reading, I recently read a book that convinced me otherwise. The book, How to Write a Lot by Paul J. Silva, is a fast read that discusses how to be successful in writing more consistently and productively. There are some specific tips about writing articles v books, but the main points are
- Set aside time dedicated to writing and all of its associated tasks
- Commit to and defend this time