Writing and Prepping

This week I am focusing on finishing my current chapter (9) and finalizing my presentation for next week. So far both tasks are coming along well. This chapter (because of the topic) was a little heavy for me to write about, but writing about it gave me a sense of relief. And knowing that I’m sharing this story, along with the lessons I’ve learned, and have some advice to share with young women of color, also gave me a push to continue to write.

In addition to writing I am also finalizing my presentation. Usually when I’m preparing for a presentation I am a bundle of nerves. However, this time I find myself excited and ready. Perhaps its because I’m use to my peers, as we’ve been on this journey together from the start. Or perhaps my excitement comes from my project itself. I’ve poured a lot myself, my time, my research, etc., into this project that I am so passionate about, and I am excited to share it with everyone and with the rest of the world upon its completion. Im also looking forward to hearing the rest of the presentations happening tonight. Everyone who has presented so far has done a phenomenal job.

Enjoying Spring Break…

Here is a brief update: : No Zoom meetings. No technical glitches. No MIA students. No creating lessons. No stress. I am devoting this week to revising my article. I am excited to revise and edit tonight with my writing partner. I am also excited to listen to my classmates’ presentations, which are little bits of themselves.

(P.S. I am excited to share a link of a draft of my article.)

Thesis Update 3/30

Since I am going to be presenting, this will be pretty brief.  This week, I just continued to write.  I have identified a couple of areas where there might need to be some final research done, but I feel pretty good for where I am in terms of research.  I decided that for my presentation that I am going to share the beginning of my thesis.  What I share with all of you tonight is the beginning of my project, as it sets the stage for all that will ensue in my story.  I also feel like getting feedback on this part of the story will help steer me in the right direction as far as the feel and tone of the novel.  From the beginning, I wanted to create an eerie, uncomfortable tension for the reader where they are always kind of bracing for what is next, and I feel like you all will get a small glimpse of that in the reading that I plan on sharing with you all.  Or, maybe not, and that feedback will be valuable in helping me shape and refine it better.  Go easy on me guys!  See you in class!

Write or Die…

See the source image

Okay, so my title may be a bit dramatic. Or is it? Honestly, it’s how I currently feel in the final month of our thesis journey! I feel as if I need to write, write and write some more. I mean at this point it’s do or die! The above meme spoke to me because when you’re working on a creative project in particular, all those thoughts and feelings come at you full force during the writing and revising process. I can bet every single one of us have had one or more of the above thoughts at some point during the last two semesters! And guess what? It’s OKAY! 🙂

Well, it’s been quite the week for me. I went from having awful seasonal allergies, during my favorite season no less, ugh super unfair! To getting a upper respiratory infection with a fever (COVID NEGATIVE!) God is good! My apologies for leaving class early during Emily’s presentation, but now you know why. Then within the same week, I got ghosted by a really nice guy I have been dating for a month. Ouch! Well, I thought he was nice. So my poor little heart was semi broken and I had lost all hope in ever finding my perfect mate. I had a good cry shesh throughout the weekend. Well multiple cries, in the shower, in bed, in the car, in my Mama’s arms. Although I’m still fragile and sad, I know I will overcome it. It could have been way worse. If my biggest current stressor is a broken heart and failed relationship I consider myself pretty lucky, considering the chaos our world is in. I thank God every night and day for keeping me, my family and my friends heathy and safe throughout this messy year. Also, Medea filled me in and told me what a fantastic job Emily did! We both agreed, after reading some of her work, that this is her best writing yet! I’m so very proud of my friend Emily. I’m also excited to hear from the rest of the class as we close out presentations. You guys and your contributions all inspire me more than you will ever know!

Alas, time to talk about WRITING! Excuse me for the above rant. As you all know, I’m a very emotional writer. I tend to write whatever it is I’m feeling and thinking, so I guess for this blog post it was no different. Plus I felt it was important to share some of the personal stuff I’m going through so that if anyone else is having a crappy week, or day, they can read it and not feel so alone. 🙂 Oh my, I can’t believe we have only one month left! I feel confident that I’m on track and I know I will finish strong. I’m speaking it into existence damn it! I’m currently still revising the work that Professor Sisler suggested. I took a bit of a break when I was under the weather because it’s hard to concentrate on writing your life story when your constantly sneezing, sniffling and your head feels like it was just hit with a large brick. No easy feat I tell ya! But I’m back on track for this week and my plan is to continue to revise my work. I also plan to dedicate the entire weekend, well most of it, to finishing the revisions and working on my final few chapters. The story, my story is within me, I can feel it calling to my spirit and tugging at my heart. It’s brimming and ready for it’s end. So I’m excited to put pen to paper, and to start typing away on my keyboard keys, to see where my story takes me next.

I also hope you all have a blessed Holy Week and Passover! For Catholics it’s a important week of reflection and prayer. The good ‘ole Catholic school girl in me can’t help but feel a sense of peace come over me during this week. I’m excited to celebrate Easter Sunday with my family, and despite the personal trials I’ve gone through this week, I’m forever grateful and blessed by God’s mercy. See you guys in class! Take Care.

See the source image

Where I’m At

So here we are at the end of March with only a month and change left of work before things need to be looking about done. The last few weeks have not been the most productive for me and it’s at a time like this when I feel myself returning past the surface that I feel the weight of the missed work. On top of that I really made the decision that next week I will be presenting, which will be alongside Lexie (sorry Lexie) whose work I’m really looking forward to hearing and will be a nice counterpoint to my crazy thesis. I don’t think any of this is unmanageable though, given the proper attitude and belief in my work.

I’d like to present something of an outlined timeline, and speaking of Lexie I’m stealing her exact template for this el oh el.

  • March 28 – April 2: Finish reading The Poetics of Space and finish presentation
  • April 4 – 9: Finish reading Diary and write my third artifact
  • April 11 – 16: Collect remaining research and finalize lit review
  • April 18 – 23: Compose interpretive analysis
  • April 25 – 30: Edit
  • May: Produce final project

I’ve appreciated the support of everyone these past few weeks despite hating that I’ve been so down and out. Even though I won’t be graduating with you, friends, it’ll have to be enough for me to hang my hat on that I was able to submit my thesis alongside you all and those from last semester.

Breathe & Edit

Hey everyone. I took some time away from my work, as mentioned last week, but fear not. I have picked up my thesis work and have began the editing and formatting process. Hopefully, the video above will provide you with a few pointers.

For me, I need to edit out parts that start to ramble incoherently due to my altered mental status from the work. As I reflect on my research questions and my approaches, I feel as if I spent a lot of time on the research and have concrete support to back my work.

Next, I will be starting to get my presentation ready and continue with my editing work.

The light at the end of the tunnel

Light at the end of the tunnel?

We are now closing out the last day of March, and you have just a few weeks left to complete your MA thesis. The final submission deadline is May 4th, 2021. There is now some building light at the end of this tunnel, and I want to both congratulate you all on the hard work you have put in thus far, and also encourage to keep the energy up for this final push of just a few more weeks.

Thank you to Emily for a compelling and harrowing glimpse of your gifted imagination with your reading of your fictive story “Siren”. We were all mesmerized with the the dark and disturbing psychological profile you have been so carefully building. This is part thriller, part psychodrama, and it is clear you have been working very hard to establish both a convincing and persuasive narrative that is also truly alarming. This kind of storytelling work is indeed a fine balancing act, and your writing effectively draws us in as readers. Bravo for the significant progress you have made with this project!

Next week we will hear from Kevin about his own creative (pandemic) fiction, and we will also have our usual progress “check-ins”. I will be about 20 minutes late to class because I am slated to be on a Kean University OER conference panel from 4;00pm until 4:45pm (right before we meet). Please expect me to open up our usual Zoom classroom around 4:50pm, and you are all welcome to join the OER session for free if interested!

Link: Kean’s first annual University’s Open Educational Resource Conference

Looking forward to it all,

Dr. Zamora

HALT

It has come to the point where I am loosing control and have to step away from the work for a while. It is important work, I know, but pushing myself through the anguish has become a red flag to knowing thy self. I am not sure how to put myself through this any more.

A lot of wind was drawn out of my sails recently. No need to say what it was that caused it, other than accepting full responsibility for my own actions. Some actions we can control, others we can not. Everything is a choice though. So my choice to save face and not end up in an in-patient facility is most likely going to affect my final few weeks in the program.

It has been a pleasure making an acquaintance with so many of you, I only wish we had more time together in person. Don’t take this wrong, as I am not giving up. That is not something I do. I do believe that my path needs to change. It is so late to try and do something else, so maybe if I sit on this, I can edit out some things and wrap up what I have.

Thesis Project 2021-03-23 18:28:41

This week I returned to my school building for the first time in a little over than a year, and the feeling was little surreal. It’s only the second day, I’m still adjusting and figuring out how I feel about this change.

On the bright side, Spring time is here, and I’ve been enjoying the sun and pleasant weather we’ve had so far! I’ve been able to sit outside a few times and get some writing done. I went back into creative writing mode (for the last few chapters I need to complete) and that tiny change in scenery felt great and really boosted my creativity. On Sundays I allow myself to sit down for extended time periods to write and relaxing in the sun while writing felt great. Looking forward, there’s really only one month left of this semester (April) and there are a few more things I need to get done so I’ve created a mini-timeline for myself.

  • March 28 – April 2: Finish current chapter (9) and finalize presentation
  • April 4 – 9: Work on and complete chapter 10
  • April 11 – 16: Finish Chapter 10 and Conclusion chapter, begin adding in research for chapters 9 and 10
  • April 18 – 23: Research, edit, revise
  • April 25 – 30: Finalize all edits and revisions
  • May: Produce final project

It’s not quite the end just yet, but the end is coming in sight. I’m excited, nervous, anxious, sad, and a bunch more of feelings. More than anything though I’m excited to continue working on my project and seeing how it all comes together in these final weeks. Dr. Zamora mentioned in the previous semester (when discussing Mary Kate) that she gave birth twice (to her beautiful babygirl and her wonderful thesis project). And it really feels like I’ve been slowly carrying my thesis to term and I’m getting closer and closer to my due date. Around this time expecting moms are excited to see what their baby will look like and how they will feel in their arms, and I feel a similar sort of excitement. I can’t wait to see and hold and show off this project that I’ve been working so hard on! One I never thought I would complete!

So, let me get back to work!!

Thesis Update 3/23

The past two weeks have been okay as far as my thesis progress is concerned.  I did some light research regarding displacement camps as these kinds of places are a major part of the later portion of the story.  I spent some time continuing to write and make small incremental progress where I can.  I am hoping to be over the half-way mark by the time I present next week, but that is still yet to be seen.  I think the more I think about this project as a whole, I am beginning to get a better feel for what the final product will ultimately look like; in all likelihood it will fall anywhere between 40-50 pages, and will, hopefully, be a piece that not only attaches people to the story and character, but forces them to think about our own real world and how the themes from my story can illuminate how we, as a society, can and should adapt with all of the different elements that we face.