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Sunday, November 30, 2014

Outrunning the Bear

There's that old joke about two guys running away from the grizzly bear in the woods. One says, why are we running, there's no way we can outrun this bear! The other guy says, I don't have to outrun the bear, I just have to outrun you.

***

So it is. Your book doesn't have to be the perfect book about its subject matter. You don't have to out-Lorca Lorca, just compete with other equally imperfect scholars.

To do that, you just have to see what needs to be done. What is the task that you need to accomplish? What do you need to do to accomplish it? What steps are needed?

I know I'm making it seem easier than it is. The point is that the talent and intelligence in scholarship is in figuring out what needs to be done and how you're going to do it. After that, it's just sitting down to do that.



1 comment:

Andrew Shields said...

Hopefully, someone else won't write your book before you publish yours:

http://chronicle.com/article/My-Nemesis-Jill-Lepore/150253/