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What’s the first thing you do when it comes down to the wire on a deadline?
If you’re me, you spend a leisurely morning doing nothing of consequence.
Then you head to the library, where you frantically check out a stack of books that look like they could potentially relate to your chosen broad topic and happen to be available.
But that’s a lot of work, so then you have to take a break when you get home. You don’t want to burn out too fast.
You listen to some music, blog a bit, spend some time on facebook.
Then you realize how messy your kitchen is. Surely you cannot justify doing homework when you’ve left a stack of dishes while knowing your roommate will come home at some point. So you have to clean your kitchen.
But now it’s lunch time. You have to eat, or else how will you have the mental energy to do research?
After that, you’ll open some of the books, stare dismally at the table of contents and realize, again, that you have no idea where to start.
Eventually, the hope is that you’ll make up a passing thesis statement (or two) and manage to fake your way through a couple of rough outlines, detailing how you’ll somehow get from point A to point B on a topic for which you have yet to do any research.
I suppose some people start ahead of time and don’t wait until the last minute. But I can almost guarantee that those people aren’t in graduate school.
Wish me luck!