Writing groups: they’re not just for summer anymore! Since the second edition of Summer Writes was so blisteringly successful, that we’re doing it again for the fall. It’s not just for historians or just for academics, but for anyone plugging away at a research or writing project. We officially kick off a week from today, on Monday, September 1st. Between now and then, leave a comment on this post to introduce yourself, tell us your overall goals for the summer, and what you’re going to do during the first week. On Friday of the first week, I’ll put up a new post. In the comments, let everyone know how you did, and what you want to accomplish the following week. Repeat for the following eleven weeks. The point of the group is to keep ourselves accountable to incremental tasks building to our larger goals, so it only works if we post every week.
When you’re setting your goals, be specific and realistic. Instead of saying, “I’m going to write every day,” let us know how long or how much you’re going to write, on which days. Are you going to write two hours each day? Four pages a day? Five pomodoros? Are you shooting for a #graftonline? Are you going to read some books or articles? Spend a day in archives? Look for grants and fellowships? Let us know! The more specific you are with your goals, the more you’re likely to get done. And instead of planning to write a trilogy of monographs in twelve weeks, set goals that are challenging but attainable. They don’t even need to be writing goals! Maybe you want to finish up all of the research for your dissertation. Maybe you want to launch a website based on your project. We are here to affirm your choices! Just make sure that your goals are realistic, or you’re likely to get disappointed and burn out.
And that’s it! Simple, right? By the time the holidays roll around, you’ll have accomplished more than you would otherwise, and you’ll have a record of all the work you did during the semester!