This week has been a whirlwind. I’ve hardly caught my breath, and I still have a lot to do before it’s officially over. But I thought I’d jot a few things down.
This was my last first week of fall semester as an undergrad. I really haven’t been that sentimental about it, as my roommate will testify. It’s not that I want to be done, necessary, or that I’m dying to escape. But I’m ready for the next step. I’m ready to move on. In some ways, I think study abroad’s to blame. I started separating from Berry College. Since I came back, it’s not that this is less my home–it’s like I’m less the girl I was, maybe. And this girl is looking to the future.
That being said, here are some highlights of the week:
- First day of classes! Advanced Rhetoric and Writing was not as scary as I thought it’d be, and I’m getting to know that professor quite well. My 200 level easy Jane Austen and Shakespeare class started well.
- I decided to walk the half mile up to my agriculture class, which was a mistake. Halfway up my ankle started hurting badly. I was an idiot and pushed myself instead of slowing down. This resulted in on-going pain for the rest of the week, though I think the swelling finally went down today. Needless to say, I will be driving in the future.
- I met with my faculty person (mentor? boss?) about the student literary journal. I’ll be editor this year, and we had a lot to talk through. I’m excited and a little nervous about the changes I’m making (mostly to marketing). It’s intimidating being the person in leadership that everyone else gets to complain about. But it’s also exciting to be able try out the ideas I’ve had since freshmen year.
- I ran around a lot trying to get all my stuff together. It was delightful. No, really.
- I spoke with Brin, the head of SOUP, on Monday evening. Not only did she dub me “Master Hollingsworth” (with a British accent), she also had a lot of great news. The SOUP is growing in some awesome ways, and I’m excited to be a part of it! I was amused by how many ideas I got just talking that–as soon as I mentioned them–Brin said they’d also been discussing but hadn’t found the means to make it happen. I love filling the gap, and I think there’s going to be a lot of cool stuff for me to do this semester. I also may or may not have re-volunteered to go to Africa next summer, which would be awesome.
- My non-profit management class! This was interesting. I have mixed feelings about it at the moment. Though I think it will be beneficial, it’s also kind of a just-for-the-heck-of-it class. The business jargon is intimidating to me.
- I got to start training my understudy/slave! I’m student supervisor in all of my jobs this semester, but my editorial assistant understudy is the one I’m most excited and focused on. This is the first time I’ve had to really train someone in-depth into a job that’s really quite new. But my worker is great, and I have high hopes.
- Writer’s Tutorial! This is a class where I meet one on one with a professor to discuss my manuscript, Blessings, and to work on my writing. I was nervous going in because 1) This was the first time anyone professional that I know and will have to interact with has looked at my creative writing, and 2) I didn’t know this professor aside from a few emails, a short meeting and the one Rhet and Writing class. But our first class was great. I was really encouraged by the things she’d liked about the manuscript, and I agreed with her completely on the things I need to improve. Maybe it’s weird, but I find that I thrive on criticism. I was super excited while she talked about all the work I’m going to be doing this semester, and when I left I was grinning like mad. (Side note, but this is one reason I think graduate school would be good for me.) There’s a lot of work for me to do, but honestly I’m so pumped to have someone who will sit down with me and explain things like passive voice and active verbs and how to make characters deeper. I’ve had to teach myself almost everything I know about creative writing. This is like a fast track to stuff that would have taken me years to figure out on my own!
As far as class, the rest of the week has gone pretty much the same way. I had some fun dinners with friends, and have done a lot of catch up.
I think the other big news is that my short story The Coming Day is in the top ten of Figment’s Throne of Glass contest, which means it’s now in the hands of Sarah Maas being judged (gah!). This didn’t happen by chance, though. I put in hours and hours of work networking with other Figment writers, leaving reviewers and swapping stories. I’m so glad that all that work has paid off so far. We’ll see how it goes. Fingers crossed!
I’m preparing to revise the same short story and enter it in the Southern Women Writer’s Conference’s college short story contest. In the rewrite, in addition to taking some of my readers’ critiques into consideration, I’ll also be fleshing out the story so it’s set in Wales during the invasion of the Normans. I think this will make it appeal more to an academic audience, and when I wrote my fantastical version I left the world vague enough that this change won’t be that hard. I’m really excited to see what it looks like by the end of this weekend.
I think I’ve said “excited” about 100 times in this entry. Sheesh.
Keep calm and carry on, friends.