Monday, January 28, 2013

No pain no gain, lots of pain little gain?

Done. That is the final verdict. My manuscript is finally done and I am submitting.

Of course there were a lot of things that needed fixing today:
References didn't look right in Mendeley. The Journal of Neuroscience wants all journal titles to be the official abbreviations, something Mendeley doesn't support out of the box. This means adding and editing several .txt files to get everything working together. After several hours of frustration I decided to tweet to @mendeleysupport and they helped me with my problems. Turned out I am not so smart (d'uh), default.txt actually means default.txt.txt. Meaning that when windows explorer says default.txt it is actually .txt.txt. Silly silly me....
Then all figures should be in RGB and all text as outlines. Of course a quick fix to do, but also needed some attention.
And then of course there is the problem of all authors who need to make small smaller smallest adjustments to the text. At a certain moment I think we arrived at "not better, just different", which signals we're done with it.

Good thing is that it all looks great now. Figures are also done, text is done, ready to submit.

All these problems meant that I have spent yet another day on this paper. Time that was actually meant to go into an awesome experiment today. I still need a few cells in vivo from the cerebellar nuclei; hard experiments that need some time and attention. Both of which are in short supply lately.

So, there you have it. The mad scramble to the finish is already turning into a hectic mad scramble to the finish. I have only five weeks left..... Two papers to finish and a discussion to write.

I'll keep you all posted!
Best, Lau

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Finish line set! Now for the mad scramble

Weeks, no months ago, I wrote about the "whirlwind that is called finishing your thesis". It has been very quiet here, and now you know why.

Good news is that I did finish one manuscript. It is now on the desk of my professor who is of course tearing it apart again... Still, I do not despair, since the date for my graduation ceremony is set at the end of May (yes, ceremony. PhD-getting in The Netherlands is a piece of theater for the whole family to enjoy!). There's only two more chapters to finish, which will be done (no, really urgently need to be done) in two months or so. To complicate things a little bit I got sick this weekend, which caused me not to work for two days. A complete disaster when on a tight schedule I might say.

So, my dear readers, now you know why I am so quiet lately. I hope to pick up blogging on interesting stuff again when my thesis has left my desk.