Well, I appear to have finished transcribing the first half of my notes on Disgrace. Again, the process is taking an excruciatingly long time, but my conviction remains that one's success in dissertation-writing emerges out of his or her ability to defer gratification. To me, a dissertation must be approached as an open-ended project. Sure, deadlines and such help an individual complete his or her given responsibilities within a reasonable timeframe, but the real trick, I find, is adjusting one's life to accommodate an approach to academic life that is similar to that of new exercisers and dieters. What I mean to say is this: just as an obese dieter or exerciser may ultimately want to drastically alter the appearance of his or her body, the dissertation-writer ultimately wants to finish his or her dissertation. The difficulty, of course, is that few people can achieve the results they want in a short period of time and, frustratingly, most people want the results immediately. The trick I alluded to earlier is in recognizing that you cannot really see much progress on a day-to-day basis and taking on faith the idea that such a chain of miniscule changes will, at some point in the future, amount to a significant change.
That's where I am today: I see how small a step I have made and I have to look back to, say, May, in order to feel like I have made any progress.
For tomorrow: More of the same.