Introducing “Thesis Thursday”

Yale's Sterling Memorial Library

I don’t intend to regularly delve into the personal and professional matters I laid bare here in that post a few weeks ago, but I allude to said post now as a way of ramping up to the introduction of the newest recurring feature to my blog:* Thesis Thursday.** This announcement does mean that I have decided to complete my dissertation in the coming year. Here’s how it’s going to work.

Though actually writing the damn thing has, until recently, proven beyond my ability, I do have a mound of research and a headful of thoughts about my dissertation, which once-upon-a-prosectus was titled “Before Arthur: Uther’s Generation in the Medieval Arthurian Literature of England, France, and Germany”, then later “The King’s Two Fathers: Uther Pendragon and the (Re-)Making of Arthurian Literature”, then later “The Literary Autobiography of Uther Pendragon”, then later still “The Three Uthers: Arthur’s Father in History, Romance, and Eschatology”***

Each week I plan to force some of those thoughts on my thesis into a coherent post and put it out there for the world to see. On Thursdays.**** These posts are not going to be in the full-on academic voice, and the footnotes will likely be the usual bloggy style instead of reference laden.***** While the things I’ll write on Thursdays are not meant to pass as things that would actually appear in a dissertation, I do welcome any comments people have on them, positive and negative, academic and not.****** I recognize this move means I have to ask the indulgence of my normal readers to put up with (or skim over)******* posts that won’t quite fit with all the rest of the stuff I do, but I am fairly confident that I can be entertaining enough that it won’t require much indulgence. There will certainly be more pop culture reference in the bloggy drafts than there would be in a for realsies academic text.

Let me end by saying that since my ragged status update of a few weeks ago, I’ve gotten a lot of support and well-wishes through non-comments-field channels, and I’m really grateful to all those who have reached out to me. I think I’ve thanked you all individually, but if there’s someone I missed, accept my thanks now and know that the omission wasn’t intentional.

I won’t close off comments here on this post, but everything I said on the last still applies. No parties are needed, pity or otherwise. I’m doing OK.

  1. * Joining Mmm… Marginalia, the (Bad) Medieval Movie Club, Google Penance, the Calendar posts† and that thing I never named where I make fun of the way people use the word ‘medieval’.
    † Which will resume, eventually, worry not. []
  2. ** And given how often Medieval Marginalia Monday tends to slip its Monday deadline, even when I’m on my game, maybe its best to think of it as Thesis Thursdayish. []
  3. *** Inevitably the focus will shift as I herd that headful of previously uncorralled thoughts forward. []
  4. **** If there were a day of the week starting in D, I’d have gone with Dissertation D-Day, because I love me some alliteration. For non-academics worrying over terminology, I’ve always used dissertation and thesis interchangeably, and nobody has beaten me down for it so far. []
  5. ***** Though I did figure out how to get my footnote plugin to let me use a different style from post to post, so the Thesis Thursday posts will use numeral footnotes instead of stacked asterisks, to help with the academic transition. []
  6. ****** In particular, if you read something and say, ‘Wow, that’s exactly what Big Fancy-Pants Professor So-and-So said in his recent book, except less coherent’ that might be something to let me know… discreetly, in an email, maybe. []
  7. ******* or delete unread from their RSS readers []

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Sir Dook

    “and that thing I never named where I make fun of the way people use the word ‘medieval’”

    Weird Word-choice Wednesday?
    Fairly-inaccurate Friday?

  • Steve Muhlberger

    I am looking forward to this.

  • Anonymous

    I’m really looking forward to the Thesis Thursdays (and because I do read you on RSS already read your first Thesis Thursday installment and thought it was very interesting), and I’m eagerly awaiting more Medieval Movie stuff. 😀

  • Ben Tilghman

    Will you accept awe in place of pity? I never would have the guts to blog my way through my dissertation. Looking forward to it.

  • Jennifer Little

    I think blogging the dissertation is a great idea! I have another friend who’s doing this and I’ve been thinking of doing it myself. Do you worry about copyright/intellectual property/publishing issues? I know it’s early to think about this, but when you have finished it, would you ever run into trouble turning it into a book because you have already “published” parts of it?

  • Got Medieval

    @google-3b1fadf578f2d893b137a3335acb6758:disqus : In the years when I was trying and failing to write, I tended to cover a lot of my insecurities with a front of false bravado.  While I’m no longer hiding behind that front, I think part of it may still be healthy, and that is this: Nobody’s getting academic jobs the way they used to.  The academic publishing market is only slightly more stable than the academic job market.  So, ultimately, I can’t let myself worry about how what I’m doing would be perceived in either. Writing is the main thing, and however I need to do that, I’m going to.

    As for blogs and copyright, “if le Vostre GC” can blog then publish, I’m pretty sure I can, too, should it ever come to that.

    @google-81c8586819c548e1171970f03c72915a:disqus , @5d21bb22332a6fa555b2ce4642b7feea:disqus , & @brigidkeely:disqus — Thanks. I shall endeavor not to disappoint.

  • Judy S

    Sorry–I can no longer see that library without thinking of Indiana Jones. So I will think of Indiana Jones and the ABD….

  • Rachel Brown

    Yeah, you!  Looking forward to Thursdays!

  • Tara Roberts

    I do look forward to your blog. (I get it through RSS.)  Please keep doing it as you can.

  • Jill

    great idea – i will look forward to this!

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