Challenges of trying to 'get ahead'...

I found out this morning I missed out on tutoring work for the coming trimester. I'm pretty disappointed, even though it means more time to pour into my own research (and dogs know I need that time as well). I can't help but wonder if I'm ever going to get work. Admittedly, I've chosen a very competitive field and I've very much starting on the bottom rung. I know I need to publish more, I need to meet more people and put myself out there. I know it's a matter of work and time and a good relationships and a bit of good luck (right time, right place sort of luck). I'm just feeling a bit desperate.

I have my name on a research assistant registry, but I know a lot of RA work goes to known students and former students, and that is reasonable, because they are a known quantity and in research there is never time to waste training someone up. Still, I'm concerned I'm chasing up a dead end.

There is nothing to do but keep on keeping on.

So!

I have just finished the readings for Summer School which starts on Friday. I have also assembled a number of readings to get started on the next chapter of my thesis - I'm taking those with me to summer school in hopes of getting a start on them while away . I have over a dozen books on order from the library, which I am hoping will be available for collection by the time I get back from Summer School.

One of my biggest challenges is reading. I have always been a slow reader because my low vision and nystagmus make it difficult for me to focus on and track text for long periods of time, or quickly. In January last year I was able to purchase a CCTV with a bursary I was awarded by Vision Australia, and that has really made an enormous difference for me. I'm still not a fast reader, but I can focus for much longer without straining my eyes too much or getting as many headaches.

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This device is kept at uni, so I have access to it for a maximum of 30 hours a week. Obviously, I don't sit at it for 6 hours a day, five days a week because I also need time to write. So far, it's been okay - the amount of time I have access to it - but this week I've realised I really need to have another CCTV at home. I need to make the most of the time in evenings when the little kids are in bed, or on the weekend (with headphones in so I can block out household noise). I have a LOT of reading ahead of me, and I can't afford to strain my eyes reading at home without a CCTV.

So, I've contacted Vision Australia to see if they have a CCTV I can borrow, and I'm applying for a scholarship to see if I can possibly raise the money to buy a second CCTV for home.

Got to keep on keeping on!

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