I'm very fortunate to have (while it is mine to have) a job with very flexible hours. Especially the flexibility of a summer.
It's a pretty common misconception that teachers have off in the summer.
We just often lack the internal discipline not to goof off when we are given three solid months to work where we want and during times we want.
This summer, for instance, I am tasked with:
1. Designing a new course for the Fall (selecting readings, developing lesson plans, and constructing papers, among other tasks)
2. Writing a book proposal
3. Revising at least one article to submit for publication
4. Researching and then writing ten additional pages to suplement another article to submit for publication
5. Writing a book review
6. Writing a ten page essay for a non-scholarly collection
7. Revising my job materials in anticipation of the new market
If I spent two weeks on each of those tasks, that would have been a little over two thirds of my summer.
Unfortunately, I can't say that I've had the discipline to work on any of these tasks for a straight two weeks. Now, summer is about half over and panic is setting in. Sure, I've worked on each of these, but I haven't completed any of them.
It's not only a matter of discipline, though. There's also mental exhaustion to keep into account (especially after the failed job search last year). And, of course, there is the lack of a support network. It's a blessing that Isabel and I can swap papers, discuss each other's work, and plan pedagogy together...but we're both pretty much at the same level now.
Thus, there are a few days when I log more time killing alien robots on the Internet than writing, and a few more hours loitering about the mall than reading.
I'm pretty sure that the will be a special presentation in purgatory for slothfulness. I imagine I'll be forced to listen to all of the ways I could have advanced the Kingdom of God if I had made other choices than hanging out with Super Mario.