Early this week I sent my supervisor a compiled version of my revised draft. It included the introduction through to Chapter Three. I've since slaved over Chapter Four, which, admittedly, is a hot mess. I wrote it last Summer before the focus of my dissertation changed. It was also the first chapter I wrote. I can't tell you how often I've come across large swaths of prose only to ponder "What the hell is this and what was I thinking?" I fell down the rabbit hole when I started editing. As soon as I changed or corrected one thing I had to revise another, which meant I'd have to change details in three other places. Structurally, it's a bit piecemeal so part of the revision is actually swapping sections and writing new connecting material.
The closer I get the more I realize how tired I am. Today a friend phoned me and wanted to have lunch. I sat at the table, food in front of me and just stared outside. I wasn't thinking anything in particular. Just the opposite, I had nothing to think about at all. My mind was a complete blank. It was a horrible effort to summon enough brain to think of conversational items. I'm glad my friend is a good conversationalist who likes talking at great length about his latest interests. It just so happened that today I was the better listener.
I've contemplated what exactly I'll do in the month and a half between when I submit the dissertation and when I defend. I know probably a couple weeks before I'll start re-reading material to get familiar with my topics. But for that first month... I don't know. What I do know is that I don't want to be a part of this world for as long as possible. I'm not sure if it's by sleeping, isolating myself somewhere dark and foreboding or what. I'd love to have a room somewhere, lots of windows, a DVD player so I can catch up on so many movies I've missed, my large stack of books (for leisure reading), and a really comfy pair of pillows. My God, the thought of those three things is tantamount to erotic fiction right now.
But for now, back to the mess of Chapter Four and writing about my beautiful diagrams. Such beautiful diagrams. I should get my degree if for no other reasons than the sheer artfulness of my diagrams.