The perils of the lit review

I'm supposed to be doing a lit review for a research proposal for a term project for one of my classes, but I keep running into two problems: 

(1) There is no literature on the subject of my proposed research project -- there is big old glaring HOLE in the professional literature where a discussion of my topic should be. (Have I mentioned that it is so much easier to find juicy research topics in librarianship than it was in theology? In theology, it feels like pretty much everything worth saying has already been said, a thousand years ago by someone way smarter than me. But librarianship is only a couple generations into thinking of itself as an academic field in its own right and not just a profession in service of other academic fields, so there's actually stuff worth saying that hasn't yet been said.) I want to go start right now on filling the glaring hole in the literature by interviewing stakeholders and writing an essay to submit to my association's professional journal. But I really shouldn't do that until I finish this research proposal.

(2) For the sake of the research proposal, then, I am reviewing literature that has an ancillary relationship to my proposed research project, because I need a mini-bibliography even if no genuinely relevant literature exists. Only I keep stumbling across articles that are really, really tangentially related to my topic -- so tangential that they really don't belong in the mini-bibliography that I'm supposed to be working on -- but that look really interesting. So I want to stop what I'm doing and read them. But I really shouldn't do that until I finish this research proposal.


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