Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Professors are a girl's best friend

PHOTO: My Bible. Heresies: The Complete Poems of Anne Wilkinson, 1924-1961, edited by my thesis supervisor, Dean J. Irvine

Just got back from a long meeting with my thesis supervisor about how things are going, where it should go as I continue writing, etc. I have to say, having a great supervisor is such a helpful thing. I have really, really lucked out, and it shows. Dean lets me do my own thing, tells me when my writing is good and when it sucks, knows my subject area extremely well (he edited Wilkinson's collected works; can't get much better than that!), and he really gets what I'm trying to do. I walked into his office today with ten pages, and walked out with some fantastic ideas and a really good sense of what I should be doing and how all of the parts of my thesis are going to fit together. Yea for fantastic profs! I've really lucked out this year. Makes me sad that Dalhousie isn't in Toronto so that I could both do my PhD here and live where I want to.

Surprisingly enough, writing my gorgeous beast, as I call it, has turned out to be a relatively painless process so far: knock on wood. I don't want to jinx myself. My second chapter is tight, which I'm thrilled about, and the third chapter is flowing smoothly. My writing is sounding clear and intelligent, and I've got lots of good ideas. It helps that there is just so much there. Wilkinson's writing is incredibly dense and allusive, which makes it such fun to puzzle out what she's working with and what's going on. I love writing about poetry! I am better at writing about poetry than anything else, which makes me so happy that I get to do it intensively.

My goal is to finish my third chapter by the end of the month and a full draft by the end of June. Entirely doable. I will hopefully have the third chapter done by the end of the week, although that might be a bit optimistic, considering that the hubby's family is arriving en masse for his convocation on Thursday and he leaves for home on Sunday. However, once he's gone, what else am I going to have to do? All jokes aside, my mantra right now is get 'er done, and that I shall. Watch the Currently Writing sidebar for updates, and wish me luck!