I was going to blog about Elizabeth Montagu’s and Sarah Scott’s author identities, but I can’t figure out how the new Eighteenth Century Collections Online search thing works and so I haven’t found any of Sarah Scott’s books (which I know are there!). Scott’s Millenium Hall is about a feminine utopia; this is no digital utopia we live in. Unless the problem lies with me, in which case, woe is me and this project.
Heather Froehlich from the University of Strathclyde just blogged at the Day of DH project about how she works. Clearly this is not my day in digital humanities, but I borrowed the idea all the same; it originates from the Lifehacker’s How I work series.
Where I work
Today I’m working from home, but generally I work on the sixth floor office which I share with my esteemed colleague and project member. We are separated from each other by a flimsy screen (easily kicked down, I think). My computer was recently updated to Windows 7, and with that went all my corpus software and Google Chrome. I’m still mustering up the energy to ask them to be re-installed. (I did write a list as requested before the update…but never mind that.) So I’m pretty firmly in the bring your own device camp. I work from home at least a couple of days a month, and I can safely say a great part of my academic work has been done with my HP laptop. It may be noisy, old, and unreliable, but at least I have admin rights and can install a printer. Cheers, university IT policy, for making our life effortless and dandy! Much appreciated!
How the magic happens
Sometimes, maybe a few times a month, I have a non-multitasking day. Multitasking is from hell, and generally I do it every day all day. This is partly due to my own bad habits, but it’s also a result of a diverse work load (in itself a very positive thing). This spring I’ve been very busy with articles, I’m teaching half a course, I’ve been giving tasks for our project assistants (who did a wonderful job) and I’m preparing for an archive visit in the summer (oh god the stress). I’m also a co-editor of an upcoming conference volume of the Dialogic Language Use 3: Miscommunication and Verbal Violence. It’s a bit funny, but sometimes I feel downright guilty for dedicating a whole day to writing.
I don’t work on weekends unless there’s a pressing deadline that demands it. This year there have been three such deadlines, I think.
I drink a lot of tea when I work. Mostly green tea. I hope it doesn’t stain the teeth. When I’m at home I listen to music, unless I’m doing something that demands fierce concentration. Right now I’m listening to a Spotify playlist. Currently playing: Question of Time by Depeche Mode.
Distractions and problems when working from home:
- Cats attempting to knock over glasses of water, sometimes succeeding. Cats trying out my tea.
- Cats escaping to the neighbours’ balcony.
- Cats lying on top of my notes.
- Not having the right files in Dropbox.
- Improvised lunches.
What I’m currently doing:
This week I need to make the final corrections to one article, go over the reviewer comments of another article and send it off as well, prepare a lecture for Minna’s and my Public Identities course on the topic of Practices of Interaction in Online Spaces (like, what people do online), and maybe listen to a lecture on archaeology to provide peer feedback.
Next time: maybe that post on Sarah Scott, a very interesting woman whose books I may one day be able to access on ECCO!