Where do we go from here?

April 18, 2012

I have been quite busy over the past few months. In late December, I traveled to London with a group of students from my university (NKU), and a couple of other schools (MTSU and Belmont). The CCSA study abroad program offered a class from NKU on fantasy (Gaiman, JK Rowling, Pratchett, etc). I was going to take that class since I knew the two professors who taught it, but then something else in the brochure caught my eye: Doctor Who. Doctor Who? Doctor WHO!?

As a life-long fan of the show, thanks to a mother who has been a fan since the show’s premiere in 1963, I couldn’t resist the urge to sign up for the Doctor Who course. I knew nothing about the professor until I googled his name. Turns out, he’s one of the core Joss Whedon scholars in the country. That cinched it, clearly this was going to be the class for me. And it was.

There was a chance the class might not happen, given that so few people had signed up for it, but in total, professor included, there were nine of us. Our class blog. I am the one in the purple hoodie. Together, we traveled by train across the UK from London to Cardiff, to stomp around in the icky rain and visit a few places where the show is filmed. Also in our journey was a trip to Stonehenge, where we couldn’t get close enough to check out the Pandorica. We visited the British Library, the British Museum, Tate and Tate Modern, The Science Museum, The Natural History Museum, The Doctor Who Experience, and much, much more. It was the opportunity of a lifetime, and I am grateful that I was able to do it. I cannot believe how incredibly lucky I am. My mother, I think, would insist that I’m not lucky, that my hard work brought me there. If this is true, and I am definitely one to at least listen to my mother, then the message is clear. Work hard, and awesome things happen. Keep working hard so more awesome things will happen.

Like this website. It was a lot of work to keep telling the story of Scurvytown every week. That work is made even harder when I let it bother me that I get no feedback, or very little notice of the hard work that I put into it. But you know, letting this sit in the background for awhile made me realize something. Who cares? I don’t need encouragement to keep going. I should keep going just because I want to. And it’s taken me awhile, but I am back in the place where I want to write this story again.

So, I want to say that I have not been siting around writing nothing for the past few months. This is quite true. In November, I started a new series (which started out as what were supposed to be stand alone short stories) that I hope to revise in the prose class I am taking in the fall. My ultimate goal for those stories is to get them published in chapbook form. Since they are all linked by a central theme, I think this is a very likely possibility.

Also, I was able to showcase my Emily Dickinson podcast from last semester at NKU’s Celebration, which was fantastic. After that, I was in charge of our grad program’s colloquium, which thankfully had very few issues. I have also been taking a graphic novel class, in which I am currently writing a script that can best be summed up as Carnivale meets Firefly. I am hoping to churn out at least 50 pages total for this, to get me halfway to the Script Frenzy finish line, though we only have to turn in 30 pages for the class.

In a few weeks, the semester will be over, and I will have the entire summer to dedicate to my little projects. I have made a few spreadsheets to help set a schedule for myself. And through all this, I have my 40-hours a week job, that while the role itself isn’t the most ideal, the company and just about everything else are perfect for me while I am still a student.

I have written this post as a reminder of how much I have accomplished in the past few months, despite my feelings to the contrary. A lot has happened, but I know I can do better. I can produce more and better works, I can write more, do more, be more. But I also need to balance it all out in a fun way. This is why I chose to expand my Emily Dickinson podcast for my thesis project. It involves a lot of research into the subject herself, but I just found out from my committee chair that there are some relevant fictional works I have to familiarize myself with as well. I was both annoyed by that revelation, and delighted by it. He’s right, of course, I need to know about other works of fiction that are similar to my own endeavors, so that I can distance my work from them enough for it to stand out. I have a long, fun, crazy summer ahead of me, of research, reading, planning, and writing. This is what it has come to. This is what has become of me. Honestly, I love that this is my life now. I am excited to see where this path will lead me.

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