That’s the crux of the 20 1/2 page paper I turned in at 4:00 today. Hooray that it’s done!!! But *hangs her head in disappointment* it’s only 20 1/2 pages. It had to be 25 at least. Well, Dr. Biava said 23 was okay since it’s a grammar paper and they’re “more dense, like math.” And I still fell a bit short. Because I want it to be a longer paper. I love the topic: I examined how majority and minority agree with verbs. They are collective nouns, and collective have tricky agreement rules. Plus, the agreement rules of majority and minority seem to behave differently based on the meaning the speaker intends. Are you still reading this? Because here’s the really cool part: my original research (e.g. the taped conversations I recorded of my students in response to a prompt I provided) reveals the possibility for an additional meaning (see the title of this blog) not listed in a highly regarded grammar book, AND that additional meaning has a regular agreement pattern that differs from those of the other meanings of the words! That means that I might have a mini-discovery on my hands. It’s not groundbreaking or anything, but still definitely worth publishing. Oh, that is if my analysis is accurate. :)
Despite that, I am a little disappointed in my first draft besides just the 1 1/2 pages I felt short of the requirement. I’m disappointed because I didn’t have a good conclusion. I am terrible at writing intros and conclusions. I tried about four times to write a conclusion, and each time, the paragraph turned into something else, another paragraph supporting my argument, instead of tying everything together, making a recommendation, and looking forward. So I just told DrB that, and I hope she isn’t too annoyed at me.
Now that the first draft is out of the way, I can start studying for my comprehensive exams (comps), which are next Saturday morning. Ugh. I’m totally skipping my Monday evening class so that I can have a few extra hours studying. I was going to skip my Wednesday night class, but the prof is one of my comp exam readers. Prolly not a good idea. Canceling my classes and having personal conferences all this coming week WAS a good idea, though. That’s for sure!
I feel really lazy right now. I have actually, several times, considered not correcting errors I’ve noticed in this post. But I just. can’t. do it. I have to.
You know what I really realized this week? Writing is a solitary, lonely activity. I holed myself up in a little 5 x 8 room in the library for about 20 hours this week with my laptop and my backpack full of books, articles, and snacky-poos to get me through. One of my former German professors came over to the room from her study carrel (that’s what the room is called) to ask me to stop humming because it was breaking her concentration (I don’t even notice the humming most of the time. Other GAs laugh at me when I do it in the office, because I’m just not aware that I’m doing it). I felt really bad because it sucks to lose your train of thought. We chatted for about two minutes, and then we quickly exited the conversation so that we could get back to writing. Also, I broke out my head phones in the GA office again this week. I hadn’t used them all semester so far, but there’s just so much distraction in there that I knew I wouldn’t get anything written without them. I even brought the headphones home so that I could work at home without getting distracted! How about that??
Okay, now I’m going to go relax my mind. It’s starting to complain. Auf Wiedersehen.