The metaphor I’m now keen on to describe the dissertation process is this one: it’s like I’ve got this giant digital photograph. The more I read, the more megapixels I get — the better the resolution, the more detail I notice, and the clearer the big picture. It’s a win/win/win situation. EXCEPT: my dissertation is only 8X10 and this photograph is massively huge. It grows more massive with everything I read. It’s practically got depth at this point. So I feel like I spend all this time trying to figure out how best to crop and frame the image for the tiny little frame I’ve got. The worst part? I either love or hate every option I try, depending on my mood.

Oh, why won’t someone give me back my Polaroid?

Reminds me of a song I’d like to quote the first verse of here now. God I loved Paul Simon when I was in 9th grade and I was learning that lyrics could be poetry.



When I think back
On all the crap I learned in high school (read graduate school)
It’s a wonder
I can think at all (yeah. I can’t. it’s ridiculous)
And though my lack of edu—cation (ha!)
Hasn’t hurt me none
I can read the writing on the wall (but can’t write anything new myself)

Oh dear. Now I’m resorting to rewriting lyrics instead of working on my first chapter. Although I have to say, I actually am making progress. I’m somewhat surprised at how diligent I’m being. I just set a November 26th deadline for a draft of my first chapter and I actually think that seems possible. Stay tuned.


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