The Blogora: The Rhetoric Society of America


Daily Routines

Submitted by Jim Aune on December 16, 2008 - 9:50am

Daily Routines is a blog about "How writers, artists, and other interesting people organize their days." I find information like this really helpful, in my perennial quest to become more organized. (It used to be easier for me to establish a reading and writing routine before I became overwhelmed by email and by various kinds of administrative work--the downside of being a full professor in a PHD program.) I usually tell my graduate students to figure out what time of day is best for them to write (I do better in the afternoons, for example, usually for no more than two hours or about 4 pages). Any interesting daily routines out there you'd like to share?

Submitted by Jim Brown on December 16, 2008 - 10:29am.

Mornings are best for me, but only because they give me a chance to rev up (with coffee and blog reading). Changing scenery works for me too. If I find myself distracted at home or on campus, I try to pick up and go to a coffee shop.

Regardless of the time of day, I try to write a "chunk" a day. "Writing" is defined loosely (it might involve rearrangement or reading over something) and "chunk" is also loose (it has ranged from paragraphs to 10 pages depending on the day). Hitting a certain number of pages has never been a good goal for me, but making sure I take time at least 5 days a week to write/think about my dissertation (or another essay) is a reachable goal.

Submitted by Jim Aune on December 16, 2008 - 11:12am.

Miriam read me an article the other day about how something called "executive function" in the brain wears down as the day progresses, so the article suggested NOT answering emails first thing in the morning. I've switched to evenings, and that seems to help. --One positive benefit of having lived with two noisy autistic boys for nearly 20 years is that I find I can read and write in almost any environment. . .

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