Graduate Degree: Completed

I have received final approval on my thesis.  It will be available online tomorrow morning and I’m sending off for personal bound copies today.  I will be graduating in two and a half weeks.

I haven’t posted much lately but I wanted to update Tumblr on this because so many of you have expressed interest and extended support during my graduate career.  I’m a bit sad to be done with it all, but that will just serve as motivation in my next endeavor.

Thank you all.

Can’t Quite Say I’ve Failed

From the day I registered this Tumblr, I’ve never let as much time pass between posts as I have since my most recent post.  This dearth of posts follows quickly on the heels of my format change, but I can only put the very smallest portion of blame on a lack of content or ability.

Instead, my decision to change formats took place right as I started a rather difficult bout of job searching–still not completed–and the main thrust of my thesis writing–ditto.

I should have the current thesis chapter done at the end of next week and it is over expectations and likely to come up to 40 pages.  If other expectations hold, I should be done with ever drafted page around mid-August.  Then everything remaining goes to the advisor for cutting and tears.

The job search is, of course, far more uncertain.  I’ve had very promising leads unexpectedly fall through, unwanted positions pass without a word from management, postings close for lack of candidates, and lots of inexplicable silence.  I can only say that I’m very glad to have a loved one and a small emergency fund to help me get through without bills falling behind.

After one or both of the above priorities have been fulfilled, I would love to start writing more regularly and in more depth here, towards the possible end of accruing more portfolio quality material.

All the best.

My least favorite thing about graduating

I know it’s a ways off, since I’m taking the slow route in finishing my thesis, but there is something weighing on me.  When I graduate, I’m going to lose my access to OED online.  This is a turrible revelation.

Third Chapter Procrastination

Procrastination is a four-letter word.  I generally just don’t do it.  I can’t feel relaxed when I’m putting work off.  Again, that’s generally.

After I got back from the conference, I took care of plenty of business: polished up the reading for the rest of the semester; did the rewrites on a paper due Monday; finished a reread of a thesis novel and a novel I was fitting in between everything else.  I even took my lady to do a couple’s photoshoot.  Then this weekend came and, besides answering the frantic, last minute emails of my students, I took it easy.  My lists of deadlines says I should go ahead and start working on my third chapter outline, but I know the workload that’s coming.  I’m gonna have to grade at least 600 pages starting tomorrow afternoon.  Then I have to rewrite another paper.  Then I have to grade the final.

For now, I acted well out of character but in favor of my sanity.  I took a weekend off.  I read someNew Yorkers that had piled up.  I watched something random from my queue.  I shot the shit with an old friend, I had a few beers, and I generally screwed around.  It’s been…

Kurt Vonnegut used to throw around perhaps the only platitude I like to roll over in my own mind: “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is?”

Science and Science Fiction Conference, Day 1

I have to get some work done, so I’ve ducked out of the third session in favor of working from the hotel.

I have some pics that will follow but for now I want to comment briefly on the fact that, while the conference was probably misrepresented–and I knew this–as a science/science fiction/theology intersection, so far the only panels I’ve gotten to see were my own (which was interesting) and another about how to use SF to teach the Bible. 

Using SF as a pedagogical tool is certainly worthwhile, but it requires a certain amount of knowledge of the field as a whole, not simply as it pertains to literature.  Just as I would not ignore religious writers and theories, neither should the religious pretend that the secular world is unable to produce worthwhile results.  Many people there got this point.  Sadly, those that don’t make it difficult to handle.