I find that when I start and complete a project I have a process.
First I come up with a cool question.
Then I try to figure out how to answer the question. This part I often refer to “wandering through the grey fog”. I look at papers, read what others have done, attempt to teach myself new protocols and programs. This part is frustrating, I often feel like I have no idea what I am doing, or how to advance/progress.
But then at some point in the grey fog, I find the path. The way to the answer. The protocol becomes clear, or the programs make sense. Then all I need to do is follow the path to completion!
Apparently I am not the only person with this problem. Timothee Poisot has recently written an amazing post about the frustration of trying to figure your way out of the grey fog by reading what has already been published. The materials and methods are often written like:
Sometimes, we’d like a little more written than “Step 2- do the rest of the fucking analysis“.