Sunday, July 20, 2008

Rewrite hell

The heading of this post is a great overstatement, but I do indeed find myself working these days on revisions to forthcoming publications rather than new work. I have minor revisions to make (but they can still take a bit of time) both to my tax & accounting article that is forthcoming in the Georgetown Law Journal, and to my forthcoming Urban Institute Press book, "The Corporate Tax: What Is It, and Where Is It Headed?"

David Bradford once said that, if you polish a forthcoming piece to the point of perfection, that proves you have misallocated your time, since the marginal value of the last increments of improvement are surely less than the marginal value you could have created by doing something creative and new. I tend to agree (and impatience pushes me in the same direction), though it is also true that when you publish something, it is Part of Your Permanent Record that will follow you for the rest of your life.

Meanwhile, I will be teaching Tax I at NYU in just over 5 weeks, and gather that I have 98 registered students. Hoping it will be fun for one and all (or at least for the great majority), but certainly not an intimate-sized group.

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