We're a little crazy, about science!

Day 354: Even more paper edits…

bad writer

These feels brought to you by: phdcomics

Whhhhhyyyy!!! Okay it’s not that bad, or maybe it is. I have yet more paper edits to do. It’s frustrating I just really want to be done with this paper and it doesn’t seem to want to end. I’m trying to keep my eye on the prize and do this right, it’s just soooo freaking difficult. I just want this done.

Journal paper standards are quite a bit higher than conference papers. I’m reminded of this every time I send off a copy to the senior author to review. We’re working on a paper that I started when I took the class she teaches. It’s not every day you get to write a journal paper from a class you took. I’m excited about it to be honest, or at least I was excited, now I’m just tired and want it to be done.

The class started in January, with the pandemic and everything going on we got the first extremely rough draft done at the beginning of May. Since then we’ve met several times, worked on different parts of it, wrote it, re-wrote it, re-re-re-re-re… you get the idea.

This is the culmination of months of writing, editing, and frustration. It was a lot to take on to begin with, but it’s becoming a problem since I can’t seem to finish it. Everytime I edit it, I end up getting twice as many requests for revisions from my co-authors. It doesn’t help that we are stitching together a bunch of different equations, and by we, I mean me. I’m stitching together a bunch of different equations.

Do you know how frustrating it is when all equations use the same variables, then you go in to redefine the variables, but forget to redefine others, in the end you have a mess of equations that no longer make sense. I’ve been playing cat and mouse with variable redefinitions. A became L, K became Q, I’ve gone though the greek alphabet, I’m running out of letters, and still it’s a hot mess.

The fact that none of this is super fresh anymore doesn’t help. I’m still trying to remember how we derived certain equations so I can double check to make sure the variables I set were the correct ones. A good example of this, the output from one equation was x_{k,n}, which was the input for another equation. That other equation had the input set as y_{k,n} and not the x_{k,n} it was supposed to be, why did I do this? Who knows, but that was how I defined it and no one caught it until I went back and couldn’t make sense of what the heck was going on.

Moral of today’s post: Don’t do scientific writing, it’s scam to make you do more work than needed. Kidding, but it really is my least favorite part of science. Well back to work I go, wish me luck. I wonder how many letters I have left to select from for variables in this paper. I need more letters…


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