One of the best feelings I have known is finishing a piece of writing, and I do not mean simply drafting it. No, I am referring to the final submission of the work, when it is out of my hands. In May of 2014, I completed my dissertation and earned my Ph.D. in English Literature at Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA.
I had taken a longer time than normal to do this work, because I had a hiatus, entirely of my own doing, from my graduate studies, and I had to reapply under special circumstances to be readmitted into the program. I am thankful that I was permitted to do so, and this time, with dedication and discipline, I finished my work. I had previously been in the swelling ranks of those with A.B.D. or all but dissertation, and I decided it was time to correct this mistake. In being readmitted, I had to take a few more graduate courses in addition to writing the dissertation, but I did it! And with my wife, my in-laws, and my cousin in attendance, I was hooded in May and graduated!!! Yay!
The title of the dissertation is typically academic and unwieldy:
From the Political to the Personal:
Interrogation, Imprisonment, and Sanction
In the Prison Drama of Seamus Byrne and Brendan Behan.
This work is finished, but I am not done with it. It will be the basis for one of the writing projects I am currently engaged with. (In this blog, I will discuss both academic and fiction writing–the two very different sides of my literary endeavors). I am currently setting out plans to turn part of this dissertation into an academic book. I will give more on that as I progress.
And, I will continue to discuss what I am working on in both realms of writing. All comments are welcome.