I am getting through my school papers. I have written one paper already, have the other outlined (requiring that I put it into complete sentences) and sort-of started my assignment for my third class. I’ll be doing that later today. Next week I have decided will be for working on my dissertation.
I really don’t want to write these papers. I find them quite boring. Yes, I need to write them for a grade, but I don’t think that there is really much other point to writing these papers. Sure, I improve my academic writing, but does that really matter to me? No. Not really.
What about the dissertation? Surely that matters? Well, yes, it does matter because it is necessary to actually get the degree. But I am not going to pursue academics as a career (at least, not the way these people would advocate). I am going to be a writer.
I understand the importance of doing these papers. They help demonstrate that I actually absorbed knowledge and can do what my degree says I can. They help me to learn how to do academic writing. They give me a chance to do research. However, I also find them extremely restricting and the people who are bothered by these papers have unusual and frustrating standards for being an academic. It’s about competition and proving that you’re smarter or better than other people. Most of the world works this way.
And I don’t want to be like that.
I’m making progress on my papers. I will be done by the end of next week. (Barring edits and an exam at the end of the month.) And by golly will I be glad to be done.
There is something to be said for sticking with a project. I’m glad I have done the degree. I learned a lot. Just probably not about the things that these people wanted me to learn.
That’s life, though. And it’s okay.