I haven’t had much to say about the dissertation for a while. It’s reached
its top secret phase, as covered up as a smoking Roswell UFO. Sometime in
the spring I broke rhythm from the regimented daily progress I was making (600
new words by noon or else!), iced the draft of chapter four, and rolled the
office chair away from the office desk for CCCC, RSA, a jaunt to New Mexico,
another jaunt to southern Pennsylvania: summertime. Next thing I knew,
shellacked by the whoosh of whole months passing me by, I was really coasting
through June and July: teaching online, mentoring four new online instructors, and putting down
15 hours per week in the Writing Center, while carrying the torch for a bunch of
online pilots–consulting by email, consulting by IM. Hi, summer. Bye, summer.
I’m once again on a dissertation writing jag. In over 6K words on Chapter
Five. Or maybe it’s not a jag
as much as a rediscovery and resumption of the daily rhythms that carried
through the first four chapters. Yet it is also like a jag, all herky-jerky.
Lurching sentences (all of them footnoted with mea culpas, my bad, etc.). Beads of forehead sweat. Deep reflective pauses for
rummaging in the now-desolate grey matter for whatever on earth can come next?
I am sure that with every sentence my facial expression tells of one who has
writer’s anguish and an
upset stomach. So: I eat yogurt for breakfast and keep after it, periodically
wondering what life will be like when the dissertation is drafted finally, maybe
by the end of Soontober.