Well into chapter 1

There’s no going back now. I’m writing a dissertation. I’m over 4,500 words into Chapter 1, plus most of the footnotes and a growing bibiliography (and this has taken me six work days, so I’m averaging about three double-spaced pages a day). All of this introductory chapter, synthesizing and summarizing the colonial period of New Orleans’ development, is from secondary sources, so I’m mostly sitting in the midst of a pile of books, leafing through them, and constructing a narrative. I wonder if it will get harder when I am writing more directly from my own research.

My homework tonight is to read and think about the economic changes in New Orleans as a result of Pinckney’s treaty and the opening of American trade in 1795, as well as the advent of sugar and cotton in Louisiana; then tomorrow i will write this topic up in about 1,000 words, plus a summary of the changes in New Orleans in the 1790s–and that will constitute the end of the first half of Chapter 1.

The outline I made early last week will keep me going for the next little while; but soon I may actually reserve a day of writing time to pushing the outline a little bit further.