My revision schedule this year had forty-four days on it. I started studying two days after my final essay deadline and finished at 9 o’clock this morning, that’s dedication for ya! I’ve had two exams in sports halls (huge, echoey, soul-less), three in function halls (distractingly pretty) and curiously one in the university health centre (intimate – only thirty people or so), but now, finally, finally I am finished. This would be fantastic but for two reasons:
1. I have a cold. The university library is a germ factory during exams so this really isn’t much of a surprise but I wish it had held off a little longer – I very nearly ended up sitting an exam with a fever yesterday. Hooray for paracetamol!
2. I now have no idea what to do with myself. This frightens me more than it should, especially since there’s the ever-present worry that if I’m this worried by the thought of three months without university, how in sweet hell am I going to cope next year in the face of actual, real-world unemployment?
On top of that, it’s not even really true. I have plenty of things to be doing with the next three months, so in the name of making myself accountable, here is my to-do list!
1. Job-hunting. I still have two unfinished job applications sitting around, plus various things bookmarked to apply for, and I need to do something about it because my CV is quite distressingly sparse right now. On the up side I got interviews based on the applications I already sent out. On the down side, the remaining applications are unfinished because they have ‘~100 words on why you would be a good employee’ sections (is anyone good at those? Seriously?) or ‘~100 words on the last show you went to see’. Or both.
2. Dissertation. Ideally I’m not going to be working till August so I should have time for this. My stepdad advises me to start as soon as is humanly possible but given that I already did quite a bit of the reading last autumn and I have a fairly good idea of what my argument will be I think I can afford a break.
That said, I’m currently reading Diana Wyne Jones’ Reflections on the Magic of Writing and I keep feeling like I should be making notes because it’s so useful. And backs up my argument perfectly, huzzah!
(I shall remain cryptic about my argument until my supervisor has told me it isn’t, y’know, terrible.)
3. Create Soc. I am now creative writing president. Currently the crafting committee is considerably more proactive and generally competent which on the one hand is good for getting stuff done, but on the other hand does not reflect very well on us writers, so, um. I need to get hold of some material to post on our shiny new society profile but getting your average writing society member to voluntarily hand over something they’ve written to be posted publicly is like blood from a stone, I swear.
But anyway. I’m thinking haiku, they’re pleasantly bite-sized.
4. Writing. This is the big one, as far as I’m concerned. I have this blog to update (somewhere amidst all the revision notes waiting to be recycled there’s a list of potential blogging topics, I need to rescue that), plus a half-finished short story that is proving trickier than I anticipated (it’s historical fiction – there’s a reason why I stick to fantasy sometimes)… and then there’s my ever-present novel.
I made a resolution back in January to finish book one this year, which by all logic should be doable. I’m currently over three quarters of the way through and there’s major edits to be done earlier on – it’s been, what, two years since I started now? I’ve changed my mind about some things, anyway – but it would feel so good to have this finished.
I would say I’m looking forward to writing book two, in which the action proper starts a lot of fun characters get to interact with a lot of other fan characters, but in my experience the correlation between ‘things I look forward to writing’ and ‘things I actually enjoy writing’ is not as strong as you’d think.
However. In the less distant future, I have a room to vacuum (I swear I’m actually pretty good at keeping my flat clean most of the time), a stack of unread books that continues to grow (not my fault, there were books from my childhood going cheap on Amazon) and some films I bought on DVD and haven’t got round to watching yet. Not to mention the sleeping. Lots and lots of sleeping to do…