Monday, July 16, 2007

12th Carnival of GRADual Progress

With today's installment, the GRADual Progress carnival hits the one-year mark! Hooray!

Now for perhaps more sobering news. After a year, the carnival still seems to be averaging only three or four submissions. Also, a distinct lack of hosts. There have been six wonderful volunteers during the past year and I am very grateful to you all, but ultimately, that means I am hosting it one month in two. And I can imagine it will continue to be hard to find volunteers to host as long as the submissions are so few that hosting requires a lot of work to find posts as well as link to them.

Finally, I'm not going to be a graduate student much longer (graduation is finally in sight!) You can all see where this is going, can't you?

The GRADual Progress concept is up for grabs. It comes with a pre-made website and email account, should you wish to use these. You are welcome to do whatever you like to revive the poor thing. You can continue to run it as it has been run until now (good luck with that finding hosts thing), or change the format, frequency, whatever. If you want to be that person, please leave a comment here. Maybe several people might want to collaborate.

If I get no takers, we can always leave the website as a sort of permanent archive of grad-related posts, kind of like what Horace has recently put together, but from the student perspective.

Which brings me to this month's links

In a series that would go nicely in Horace's collection, Fabio at has just written a set of posts on how to make it through grad school. I'm not going to link to all the older posts in the series, but the most recent three are on choosing your topic, other considerations for during the dissertation writing process, and finally, models for actually writing the dissertation. Jim Gibbon has kindly assembled links to the full set of posts.

There's been a lot of learning going around:

PhD Ladybug is exhausted and learning to establish boundaries.

Queen of West Procrastination is learning to allow herself to be human and is refocusing her academic self-image.

Ancrene Wiseass is learning to be herself.

EA is learning when to stop.

Kisha learns that there is a big gap between the metaphors of climbing a mountain and falling off a cliff.

Parts-n-pieces has learned an extreme strategy for making herself write.

Stewgad learns why you should avoid taking a decade to write your dissertation.

And some pondering:

The History Enthusiast wonders why we procrastinate. Her commentators have some ideas.

FemaleCSGradStudent wonders at the fact that moving from industry into academia didn't lose her the Dilbert-style managers.

Psycgirl writes a thoughtful post about losing her stride and finding it again.

Earth Wide Moth has a fascinating post about all the interrelated tasks that fall under the "canopy" of dissertating. Including staring off into the distance!

Turducken has some thoughts about the academic job market. Then there's the "most stereotypical PhD story ever". And don't miss the hilarious discussion of three different approaches to graduation!

And some suggesting:

The History Enthusiast reviews mind-mapping tools.

Academhack shares some fantastic "old-fashioned" academic tools.

And some milestones:

EA has finished writing up her participants' experiences.

Running Red Lettered passed her thesis defence.

Skookumchick turned in her Done Damn Dissertation Draft (DDDD). As did I!

Zelda has completed her minor revisions and her committee signed off on them.

WWW Mama may have found an exit-ramp from grad school that might just be an on-ramp to the rest of her life.

Finally, from the other side of the great divide, One Bright Star participated in her first defense as a professor on the student's committee.

Congratulations to all of us!


BrightStar said...

Great compilation of links. I always like seeing this carnival.

Kara said...

Thanks for putting this together:-) Where can I look for the next theme? I'd love to submit something. I'm just starting the dissertation process and it'd be a nice reflection point.

StyleyGeek said...

Hi Kara, I'm glad you enjoyed the carnival. Unfortunately, as you can see from what I say at the start, there may not be a next one. If someone does decide to take it on, the information about the next carnival will presumably be posted on the website.

wwwmama said...

Oh I hope the carnival doesn't die! I don't think I can take it on, but I want someone else to!

EA said...

Hi Styley,
Thanks (again) for the great carnival. And I so appreciate everything you've said in this post.

Unfortunately, I can't take the whole carnival on either... I do have a a half-assed, lame offer though: I'd take over the website and keep the list of graduate students current... the part I can't do is putting the monthly carnival together, it's WAY too like my data analysis procedure... I just can't face it... :oP

I offer this because, although I love the actual monthly carnivals, the thing I most appreciate about the GRADual Progress is the list of other graduate student bloggers. Coming across the website, and finding this community has been sanity saving while I am at home alone with all this work (my program is distance learning, I finished my last TAship four years ago).
Food for thought,

StyleyGeek said...

Hey, EA, that would be great. You are right that it would be nice to keep those links up to date. I'll have to think about the practicalities of it, since the blogroll in generated by and is under my account there. But I should be able to export it and then you could import it to your own account, if you have one with them already. Otherwise to a general account set up specially for the blog.

IR said...

What a great carnival. on behalf of all lurk-readers out there, I really appreciate all your work.

EA said...

Sounds good, I don't know how to import... but I'll see what I can find out...

IR said...

oh, and thanks for the shout-out! :) I didn't even see it until just now.

Frog Princess said...

I've been reading the carnival "silently" for a few months now and it's been great! I could probably host sometime in the fall (although my blog is pretty small right now). I can't commit to anything earlier b/c i'm going to be out of the country for the next six weeks or so with questionable long-term internet access. Let me know!

Frog Princess said...

(this is still frog princess above) scratch that went awry: this is actually the link to my blog

StyleyGeek said...

Hi Frog Princess. I would have replied at your blog, but the link doesn't go there. It goes to your profile, but there's no link to the blog.

Are you offering to host as a one-off, or to take over organising the carnival when you get back? Because I'm looking for someone to do the latter. If you are offering a one-off host, I'll keep your name in mind in case someone does take on organising, and I'll let them know you are interested.

thefrogprincess said...

Styley Geek,

I was offering to do a one-off but I've gotten so much from the four-five months I've been reading the carnival that I think I could commit to running it. The only issue is that next spring I will be in an area for a few months where I can almost guarantee I wouldn't have the internet capabilities to run it but before and after that period I should be able to handle it. Let me know if that sounds good!

My apologies for the dead link...I've recently moved the blog to in an attempt to spark myself to have a more substantive blog.

Catrala said...

Hi! I'm like Frog Princess... I've been a silent reader up to this point.

I know this isn't really what you're looking for, but I'd be willing to host at some point if the Carnival does go forward. Just let me know. :-) Thanks!!!

thefrogprincess said...


i emailed you a few weeks ago about hosting the carnival but i'm guessing that you didn't recognize the email address. i've beefed up my blog and you can now contact me through it with all the information i'll need. Thanks again and my apologies for all the confusion (as I suspected, my internet connection cut out for a few weeks).

here's the link:

thefrogprincess said...

Did you receive my email?

address was