Dissertation 101

When it comes to writing essays, I usually try to stick by one rule: 500 words a day and you can’t really complain.

So far, it seems to have worked for me so far in regards to my University assignments. If I can get at least 500 words done for an essay each day then it will be finished much sooner than it would if I spent time faffing and fretting.

I’m initiating this same tactic for the writing of my Dissertation too!

In total, I have to write a 9,000 word Dissertation of my chosen topic (because I’m crazy, I chose femininity in Shakespeare’s comedies – what was I thinking!?). Now, in reality, 9,000 words isn’t actually that much for a Dissertation, considering other courses are expected to write around 15,000 words (yowza!!). But the thing that is most daunting is the fact that it’s 9,000 in comparison to the 1,500-2,500 we’ve all gotten used to so far into our three years on the course. Then sudden near tripling of our usual word count is a very scary thought for lots of people as they may already find it difficult finding those initial 2,500 words!

For me, essay writing has never been something that’s particularly phased me – I’m actually a fairly competent writer and am most strongest in my essay writing. But even the 9,000 word count is daunting me a little just because it is so much bigger than what I am used to. However, I refuse to let it phase me or stress me out.

If, like in all my previous essays, I can write a minimum of 500 words per day that could technically mean I could have my first draft completed within 18 days – that’s in less than 3 weeks!! I’ve already been writing now for 2 days and have 1,090 words already so if I keep this up I could be finished in 16 days and then able to leisurely edit and redraft until my submission date at the end of March. If I can do this, I will be taking so much pressure off of my shoulders and might actually enjoy the writing process.

As much as I joke about my choice of Dissertation topic, I do actually find Shakespeare somewhat enjoyable and have a fairly good understanding of the language so therefore have enjoyed and learnt a lot from the initial research process and now look forward to writing it down – when it eventually comes into my head to write it down, that is.

I would thoroughly recommend my writing technique to anyone: 500 words a day and you can’t really complain!

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