Monday, January 21, 2013

fini, finite, terminer, afmaken, acabado, chríochnú

I've had posts floating around in my head for months that I didn't have time to write.  And of course now that I'm finally done with school, none of the notes I've made over the last few months have been enough to entice me to sit down and start writing posts again.  I mean, posts that include something besides updating you on the interminable process of writing my thesis.

So, you get one more of those and then tomorrow I'm going to make myself just sit down and start writing posts.  But this one first, because I have to tell you about the end of the whole thing.

Nightmare stories abound about people trying to write their thesis or dissertation, and getting into messy situations with advisors who are more interested in politics or advancing their own career than they are in helping their advisees.  I know of two students from my own year who have that kind of tale to tell.  So I considered myself supremely blessed to be working with a wonderful advisor who seemed completely OK with my style of writing, and also the unusual thesis topic I chose.  It's not every professor who would be willing to accept 17 pages of HTML code as part of a thesis in Literature.

But last week, things sort of fell apart.  We had a major disagreement over what the conclusion should look like.  I think we were both so surprised that we were disagreeing so strongly after nearly a year of working peacefully together that we didn't really know what to do.  It made that last week extremely stressful.  I think we are both still reeling from it.

However, the absolute deadline for getting everything done was 5 p.m. on Friday, and I sent him a version that he accepted on Thursday.  Then I had to jump through a number of administrative hoops on Friday (i.e., two forms that needed to be downloaded and filled in, scanned and e-mailed back), and was all done by about 3:30.  I called the grad school office at 3:45 just to make sure everything was done.  "Yes," the program assistant told me.  "Everything is checked off.  You're finished.  Congratulations."

*Aunt BeaN dances around the kitchen before collapsing into bed three hours earlier than usual*

*Aunt BeaN sleeps about double her normal amount for the next two days*

If that was all, it would be no big deal that we had disagreed at the end.  But part of my thesis was writing a page of a website, and I'd like to continue to work on the website.  So it's a bit sticky at the moment.  I think it will be OK in week or two.  I don't think he's very happy with me, and lord knows I wasn't very happy with him for about 48 hours last week. But in spite of the disagreement, I'm really happy with how the paper turned out, so it has been easy for me to get over being upset.  If he's not happy with it, I suppose the same may not be true for him.  We'll see.

Anyway, if you're having a moment of boredom and you want to see it, just google "The Joyce Project" and check it out.  My bit is under the "Resources" tab-- the "People in the Novel" list.  I don't want to link to it because I don't want them coming here.  But there it is.  The actual thesis had another 40 pages of writing about annotations and hypertext and etc etc.  But the starting point was creating that list.

Moving on.  Because OMG I CAN!!!  I can just move right along and not even think about that sucker ever again.

Since I haven't done much of anything else besides work on school for quite awhile, I have many projects to catch up on.  When we moved in last January, I never really finished organizing my closet (or anything else for that matter), because we moved on Friday and the new semester started on Monday.  Things are shoved onto shelves and stuffed into corners.  There just wasn't time to do anything else.  So there's that.  And the bathroom cabinets I was going to paint, and the exposed beams in our bedroom that need to be stained, and the carpet that needs to be cleaned (four months with a puppy, remember?).

And then there's the matter of cleaning up.  You all know that housekeeping isn't my thing.  Our house never looks like a showpiece.  But even I have my limits, and this house is way past what I can put up with.  I'm planning on spending the rest of the week just trying to get things cleared up enough that we can eat at the kitchen table again (at the moment, it is piled high with Joyce's biography, three different versions of Ulysses, Gifford's annotations, plus stacks of notes and journal articles and different versions of my paper, not to mention the 16 books we read for that YALit class, etc etc etc).

And then there will be those frequent moments when I stop and look up, dumbfounded, and remember that I AM DONE WITH GRADUATE SCHOOL. 

Oh my lands.


  1. May I say it again?


    Also, whew, all done.

    (We "worked on" the living room this week while Dan was off. Last night we had some nearly-family guests drop by. That room was delightful to sit in, I am admitting begrudgingly.)

    Enjoy your projects! The end result IS, in fact, worth the trouble.

    1. Thanks, Julie! I know, I've been thinking about you as I clean and organize (not very well or very quickly). I know you hate it! But it is nice to have a bit more space when it's done.

  2. YES you are done. So proud of you.