2012 review

In general…
In the last year I worked briefly as an essay tutor, travelled to France, wrote a whack of papers and things, moved to Oxford to start a DPhil, got nominated for a few graduate prizes, sat The Test, got elected to a membership at the Royal Historical Society, presented 2 conference papers, and bought far more books than I can actually afford. Here follows a slightly more specific account of the year for the sake of posterity and my spotty memory.

Although this blog was actually started back in September 2010, a major purge and ‘re-tooling’ re-set the clock back in March. Since then I have written 103 entries (counting asides and re-blogged posts, but those are few). I wish I could give a word-count but there is no easy way to get that and I don’t feel like checking each entry and adding up the sums.

Site stats-
Total visits – 2800 (for 2012 calendar year)
Most visited page – Kaweco (thanks to the Pen Addict blog)
2nd most visited – All Souls Prize Fellowship and the Art of the Short Essay Answer (thanks to Google)
3rd most visited – Books as Objects (thanks to keywords like ‘vulgate’ and ‘Dumbarton Oaks’)

This is always difficult to quantify because writing intended for publication has a few stages of completion and until the little buggers are in print, there are qualifications to each stage. This list may look productive, even prolific, but keep in mind that half of it is still ‘in progress’ wither with editors or other people beyond my control.

Published or complete stuff
– 4 book reviews. (Published electronically on the web-page of the association I reviewed the books for)
I am particularly pleased that the 4th review just got online after a rather lengthy delay.
– 2 conference papers delivered. (one was submitted as an abstract in Sept 2011, the other was submitted in August and presented in November).
– 1 conference abstract submitted and accepted (this was submitted in May and accepted in November for a July 2013 conference. Yes, we need to submit things that far in advance sometimes).
– 1 book chapter abstract submitted and accepted (draft is due in May 2013. I plan to finish it for the end of March).
– 1 doctoral scholarship application (if anyone has written something like this they know that it counts as serious writing alongside all the rest. I didn’t get this particular one but that’s ok).

Stuff in submission
– 4 peer-review journal articles submitted. (1 has been to the reviewer and is now back with the editor but I don’t have that yet. 2 more are certainly with reviewers but the 4th one is MIA now that the editor isn’t returning my e-mail).
– 1 conference proceeding in final stage for re-submission. (The society that ran the November conference invited presenters to submit versions of papers to their society journal which does not count as peer-review since it’s only circulated to members and is not otherwise indexed. It still counts as publication and the readers constitute an important audience. The editor has seen the final paper and I am tweaking the format and notes to match the style-guide. It needs to go back out in January).

Stuff I am currently working on
– 2 conference paper abstracts (1 is due Jan 10, but will be finished before that. The 2nd is due Feb. 1. The conferences are in April and June respectively).

School stuff:
This is also hard to measure since it’s so abstract. I feel like I’m on top of things and even ahead of the game, at least by UK standards, and that’s good. Thankfully, the academic stuff is as manageable as I thought and my supervisor is the best of all possible supervisors.

I tend to vacillate between two opinions on this whole endeavour. On good days I am confidant that this is a good idea, that I am doing the right thing, and that this will all work out even if it does not work out in the usual way. On bad days I am dead certain that this was the stupidest idea I have ever had and that it will turn into a life crushing regret. On balance, I have had more good days than bad.

There is more but my memory being what it is, I can’t pull out anything more without making it into work and I am trying to avoid that today (unnecessary work. I am actually working but its useful stuff).



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