All posts by kevinkourakos

Thesis Update 2/23

I have to be honest, this week could have been more productive for me. I just hit a wall of some sort, and the words did not come out as easily as I would have hoped them too. It is not the end of the world, but I am my harshest critic and feel like I lost some valuable time to work on this piece. I will get into specifics of my progress in class tomorrow, as there is not a whole lot to report. All is not lost, however, I definitely feel confident enough that I will be able to right this ship sooner rather than later, but an overall underwhelming week in terms of progress.

On a personal note, I am happy to share that I have been informed of my acceptance into Oklahoma State University’s PhD program in English, so that is something that can hopefully give me a much needed boost for this process.

Thesis Update 2/16

This week I spent some more time writing my story, and I can feel the momentum beginning to build.  I definitely feel as though I could have gotten some more done, but I feel really good about what I was able to accomplish as I can now see where things are coming together and where I could possibly make improvements or tweaks, but that is something I will do once I have Dr. Zamora takes a look at it and gives me her own opinion on the direction of my narrative.  For tonight, there won’t be too much to report back other than I feel as though I am moving nicely through all of it and will be excited to continue moving forward with it.  That’s all I got guys, see you all in class! 

Onward and Upward

This past week was a rough one for me.  Due to some outside circumstances, I was not able to get as much done as I would have hoped, but such is life, right?  I was hoping to get a solid five of six pages written out, but I was only able to get two down.  However, I really like what I have come up with in this time and I can feel some kind of momentum beginning to build.  For the first time, there is clarity as to the direction and my process, which I am very happy about.  While yes, I wish I was further along than I am now, I am more motivated and excited over this project than I have been to this point, and am looking forward to carrying that momentum moving forward into the coming weeks to begin to really put all of this together.  Onward and upward from here everybody.  Onward and upward. 

Update 2/2

This week, I took time to set a true outline to my work.  This has been a very positive experience for me as far as me getting the major flow of the story squared away.  I was a bit lost at first as far as formatting and those kinds of things go, but what I decided to do was create a 5 scene description.  Basically, I am showcasing what the 5 major parts of the story are.  Admittedly, I did not include all of the details and elements of each scene, as I do not want to feel blocked in or attached to these things as I create moving forward.  With all of research done and creating a really good template for me to start with, I feel like I am ready to begin attacking this work and creating my story from the ground up.  I look forward to continuing this work in class tonight and hearing from my fellow thesis writers to hear about their progress.  It is always inspiring and makes me want to continue with my momentum (the best I can). 

Thesis Denouement

It seems like just yesterday I sent an email to Dr. Zamora to inquire about the MA program here at Kean University.  Now I am in the last semester of this program and am drawing near the end of my thesis, and it all seems so surreal in a way.  Crazy.  Over break, I took some much needed time to decompress where I could, as my job got much busier and more intense as we entered the heart of the holiday season.  I had the chance to spend the holidays with my family and do some things that I wanted to do (finish watching Supernatural, continue working on my tattoo sleeve.)  My project, however, was never far from my mind.

I did make sure that I carved out some time to sit down and think about where I go from here with my thesis.  For me, the most important thing was to map out my story and get a final sense of the events and the order in which they are going to happen.  Now, some of these things can change depending on how these first few weeks of continued development play out, but the bulk of the story is definitely set, leaving me with the task of simply sitting down and writing it (piece of cake, right?)  

Mapping out my semester, I think the most important thing for me, especially early on in this semester is that I commit to writing for about two hours at a minimum a week to start, just to ensure that I do not drift too far away from it.  Allowing my classmates and Dr. Zamora in to see my progress and listen to their suggestions is going to be a large cog in the machine that is the production of my thesis.  I have reached the stage where feedback is the most important asset that we have in this class to make sure we are heading down the right track.  As far as timelines or deadlines that I have thought about for myself, I do not want to restrict myself or put myself under any more pressure than there is already attached to this project, so I am not going to give hard dates on when I expect to reach certain milestones.  Just want to let it all come to me as it comes.    

That’s all I have for you guys.  See you all tonight!


I cannot believe that the end of the semester is coming down to a close.  It feels as though I blinked and now poof!  Here we are wrapping up with just over a week to go.  As I look back and reflect on my MA journey to this point, the ending of this semester is going to be bittersweet due to the natural progression of life.  For all of those who are finishing and will be finishing their work in this program this semester, I am so happy for each of you and am proud to call each of you a colleague and friend.  Selfishly, I wish you all had one more semester so that it lined up with the end of my journey in this program, but at the same time, I look forward to checking in with all of you to see how the next step in your lives is developing.  For those who will be crossing the finish line with me next semester, we got this!  Just need to grind out one more semester and we will be exactly where we envisioned ourselves when we applied to this program in the first place.  

As far as my own personal reflection, balancing work and school has been killing me and I cannot wait to have a slight break in the action.  I have been working on applications to 5 PhD programs in writing, rhetoric, and composition, so adding that to the mix makes me even more on edge and stressed (don’t worry Dr. Zamora, the information you asked for is coming shortly!)  That has always been my goal from the time I entered this program, so for that process to be in full swing has certainly been intimidating, but it is one I am also cautiously excited to see how it all pans out.  

Finally, let me talk a little bit about my project.  Wow.  Just wow.  How far this work has come for me since last semester is really wild to me.  What was initially an idea for short outline of an episode of “Black Mirror” has morphed into a potential, real screenplay.  It is certainly intimidating and I am sure I will need plenty of guidance and assurance down the final stretch, but I am ready and excited to enter that phase.  Not I finish up with the work I am doing this semester, of course!

One week left guys, one week left.  We got this.  See you tonight! 

Update 12/3

Everything has been happening so fast which is why my post is coming so late.  I can barely keep track of what day it is!  WIth that being said, I will be somewhat brief in my updates on my thesis project.  I took some time to sit down and map out a bit more of the story.  It is still far from finished, but it is coming along and I am satisfied with the progress that I have made up until this point.  I also have been able to sprinkle in some research time for all of the aspects that require it.  From the setting to the occupation of my main character, I am finally starting to put together a considerable lot of information that will be able to help me to form my story.

Additionally, one more update, I really began to think about what Dr. Zamora said about my piece and I think that I am definitely going to pivot to making this into more of a screenplay than a novel.  Frankly, that is how I have been conceptualizing my ideas, so it makes more sense for me to take it in that direction, and that really excites me moving forward with this work. 

Progress 11/18

This week I took some time to plan out the events in my story, taking Dr. Zamora’s suggestion moving forward as my next step.  It has been slightly challenging to think of how the story is going to break at different points, but it has been fun nonetheless.  What I have tried to focus on is listing out the main events that will happen throughout the story and trying to fill in the details from there.  That is where a project like this is going to flourish, in the details.  Once I have the entire thing mapped out, I will conduct more research into all of the aspects that still nedd to nbe ironed out, and I believe this will open even more doorways for me to continue to construct my project.  One thing I have also thought about briefly is how I want to put all of it together, as the more that I have thought about it, I think Dr. Zamora was right where this project will end up being more of a screenplay than a novel, and that both excited me and scares me, as that is something else that I need to do research on and see how to put all of this together.  Not a ton of progress, but progress either way.  See you all later!

Update 11/5

This past week has been a total and utter blur in all of my classes.  I work in a retail warehouse and a pizzeria on the weekends, so with the weather getting cold and the holidays upon us, I have been running around like a mad man.  With that being said, my thesis work is coming along pretty nicely.  My efforts this week focused mostly on my formal submission at the end of the semester by way of my proposal and my literature review.  With my presentation coming up next week, I want to make sure I have some of this work done as I feel as though it will be easier for me to convey my thoughts and for the rest of the class to understand my work a little better.  I am now beginning to try and put together sources for my lit review and will begin the process in putting all of this together.  See you all in class!

Thesis Update 10/29

This past week, I attempted to try and put together one scene for my thesis project.  This was a much more difficult task than I thought it would be if I am being totally honest.  As I sat down to complete this, it came time for me to decide what scene exactly I wanted to work on and build.  Given that my story is still in early planning phases, I found narrowing down where I would want to start with and work on first to take more time than I thought it would.  Ultimately, I decided to go with the beginning of my story, the first scene.  For me, this was the best way for me to go because I think it would give me a jump start in creating the world or universe that I want my story to be set in.  Those kinds of details are what will make this story everything it can be, because it will set up a clear direction and vibe for me to work with and build towards.

As I sat down to do this, I began to type feverishly as I could begin to feel everything take shape.  I did not even mention a single character, so as I went on I found I was not writing a scene so much as I was putting together a concrete list of elements that I wanted to be present in the first scene and the symbolism I want to include in the onset.  This may have veered a bit from where Dr. Zamora suggested for me to do, and I am not sure if she is going to like it, but I can honestly say for the first time in the last several weeks, I truly feel like I have made a step in the right direction.