I was much further out than you thought


The dissertation is finished.


Honestly? It was horrible. And exactly the sort of thing May persistantly does when faced with a deadline. Flail, cry, write write write, delete delete delete, stare at screen in numb agony, like a rabbit waiting to be run over by the approaching head-lights, waste a good dozen hours calling self every name under the sun for not having finished dissertation in July, miss outing with friends because of stupid bloody bedamned migraine, type madly into the night several nights running, wake up too tired and stupid with sleep deprivation to carry on, carry on nevertheless, decide the hell with the word-count, just keep going and hand in whatever resultant three pages of misspelt scrawl result, writers’ block promptly takes hold of soul and wrings it like a damp flannel, more staring at screen, suddenly realise that there are quite a few words on the lap-top and staying up the whole of the last possible night will actually do it, drink coffee, am actually writing! To the finish! Wheee! Press print at 3:30 am, printer refuses to work, small and terrible interval in which pact is made with house-hold demons, press print, it prints! It prints! Realise have forgotten about mandatory 1.5 inch left-hand margin, own margin is less than one inch, muffled shrieking, reformat entire fucking thing, print, go lie down next to H and watch dawn through the window blinds.

Handing it in this morning was absolutely euphoric. Tired, pale, navy blue under the eyes, and delighted with self and entire darling adorable fluffy-clouded universe. Dancing in streets.

And then I came home and watched Hell Boy, to try and blot out the rapid crash into ‘it’s a heap of crap and I’ve handed it in now and there’s nothing I can do to de-crap it and my life sucks and I hate everything’ which inevitably also happens when May hands in course-work, sends job applications or, on bad days, hits ‘post’ on a blog entry.

This being a whole dissertation, produced under rather a strain, the crash is fairly almighty. Hell Boy helped (we’re going to see Hell Boy II later this week. I wasn’t being solely random). And I am also now tormented by the feeling I ought to be doing something really really important. This is also traditional. It will fade.

And now, back to reproducing. On which front I have no news. It is day eleven of the cycle, and jack shit is happening down below. Ah well. Satsuma is a slow starter at the best of times. She was this slow on the Successful Cycle of Slow Doom, in fact. And I was stressed out of my tiny mind that time too. Hah hah hah to ‘just relax’, I say.


11 responses to “I was much further out than you thought

  • KristiKae

    Oh, well done!

    I’ve rarely been so proud of someone I know only bloggily.

    I’m thinking good thoughts for your other endeavours.

  • Xbox4NappyRash

    Well done.

    We are cycling-into-sync… CD09 here…

    Best of luck!

  • Hairy Farmer Family

    Oh blimey. I have been that blocked-up rabbit! With the buggered printer! Dear God, the pitiless malice of inanimate objects…

    But Yay!!! For handing it in! It is, quite definitely, considerably better than you are giving yourself credit for, because you are extremely clever and couldn’t write crap if you tried ever so hard to.

    I have sent Satsuma some good vibes. My very nicest, in fact, from a vintage vibes year. I hope she performs her best for you sometime soon – I know she’s trying hard, bless her.

  • womb for improvement

    I feel it! Although for me the best thing about deadlines is that it is the only time I ever have the desire to clean the flat. Enjoy the fact that it is now totally out of your hands and you can’t do everything else about it.

    Saw Hell boy II the other week its not Pan’s Labyrinth but better than I thought (and better than the first one). Although *little spoiler* turns out no film is safe for us ttc-eers.

  • Ann Z

    Your writing process sounds exactly the same as mine. God I hate writing, especially for deadlines.

    Good job on getting the damn thing done and turned in! As one associate told me as she was working on her dissertation, she reached the conclusion one night that it could be good, or it could be done, and that’s when she decided she was done. I didn’t have to write a diss for my MLIS, but when I gave my final presentation in class, I did play the alleluia chorus at the conclusion. Then we all went out for a beer. Enjoy that feeling that comes with the realization that you DON’T have something really really important hanging over your head anymore.

  • Robyn

    Oh joy and bliss! Diss is finished. Well done May. And here was I thinking how you were much better disciplined about your academic writing than I when in fact the whole process resembles mine in almost every tiny detail.
    Way back in the day, when I first returned to study and was writing my first assignment on an Amstrad 64, I had to spend the night deleting previous drafts to save the latest one as the computer’s memory was so miniscule. Around 3.30am, when tiredness, grumpiness and general brain freeze was at it’s peak, I forgot to delete, overpowered the memory and lost everything. Which was how I came to hand in an earlier printed draft version with hand written corrections. I did manage to pass.
    This post brought all those fond memories back. And not to worry, I’m willing to bet you’ve done brilliantly.

  • deanna

    Awesome!!! AWESOME!!!! Congratulations and big hugs on a fabulous job well done!

    (also hoping for a quickie review of hell boy 2…..we’re debating whether to spend the ticket price)

  • Geohde

    Much impressed. A whole dissertation?

    Very very impressed.


  • Jane G

    Congrats and well done! Try not to think about it now, it’s out of your hands.

  • Baby Smiling In Back Seat

    Here from LFCA…
    Dear Dr. May,
    Congrats!! You will have many more accomplishments, I’m sure, but hopefully all of them will be easy compared to the dissertation. I knew a couple of people in grad school for whom the diss was no big deal, but for the rest of us, an unfinished diss is a dark cloud constantly hanging over you, and a finished diss is a shining star! A beam of light! A rainbow over your shoulder that you enjoyed and now are moving beyond!

    If you have an oral defense, I hope that it goes swimmingly. If not, congrats on being really done!

  • Solnushka

    Excellent work there that May. And I bet it’s fab.

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