This blog is essentially me detoxing from academia. I recently graduated with a master’s in English and before that I earned a bachelor’s in English and European History.
So, basically, I wrote a lot of literary analysis papers and I also got tired of writing literary analysis on other people’s terms. I enjoyed my time in grad school and still love to learn (and write literary analysis), but I no longer want to write about texts and themes chosen for me on someone else’s time table.
Currently I am working part-time at a library and doing freelance technical writing on the side. My new-found freedom from syllabi, midterms, and annotated bibliographies is lovely. I had forgotten what free time was–but I’m also not 100% sure what to do with it.
One way I have kept myself occupied is by studying topics I didn’t have the time to learn more about when I was in school. During my stay in the academic world, I became fascinated with narratology and narrative structure. I didn’t know it at the time, but my interest was piqued by an undergraduate paper I wrote about the narrative choices in Pat Barker’s Regeneration. I thought the novel’s point of view shifts were a rhetorical reflection of the book’s excellent, thought-provoking content, but the idea of actually studying narrative beyond that one project still didn’t occur to me until nearly a year later when I was a first year graduate student in a class about adaptation theory.