Final result

It’s officially official now. I checked blackboard.

I have passed my MA with Merit. Graduation is 23rd January 2019.

I can’t decide whether to focus on finishing Charlie’s War, Fire Storm and Her Last Death before going on to apply for PhD courses or try and juggle them all.

Dissertation printing and binding update

Thanks to a donation from scientist, poet and musician Divya M Persaud, I am able to afford the ring binding option for my dissertation copies. If anyone wants to help out, another £60 will allow one hard bound and one ring bound copy.

In other news, I didn’t get PIP, I missed daily living by 2 points. I didn’t get anything for mixing with others and verbal communication. You know, those two areas I really struggle with. Apparently, if I can talk to someone just about coherently in a small, quiet room for a bit then I’m fine. We sent a mandatory reconsideration request, with lots of extra evidence, last Tuesday. Give it a few months and I might hear back.

Edit: I’ve just found out graduation is going to cost another £42! Gees! Do they think we’re made of money?

Help me get my dissertation bound, please!

I’m entirely serious today. I have to hand in two copies of my MA dissertation by 12th December 2018 and they have to be in hard binding. The university recommends Lincoln Binding. They do everything to the university specification, but for two copies it’ll cost me at least £101. I have to hand both in but I get one back and the other goes into the library.

You may or may not be aware of this but I am disabled and don’t work, and I just can’t afford it. I’m writing today to ask if anyone would like to assist in getting my dissertation bound, please? I’m thinking of adding a page to the back with a list of those who donate and thanking them for their support. I’m struggling with my mental health at the moment because of other stressors and this is just adding to the load.

Paypal: rosemariecawkwell_184@hotmail,com

Dissertation news

Last Wednesday my dissertation arrived with notes and my final score: 65%

I was pleased but disappointed at the same time, because I’d really wanted a higher mark. I have high expectations of myself and felt I’d let myself down by only getting 65%. I’ve got over that now, almost. It sent me into a bit of a depression for a couple of days but I’m beginning to get through that. It hasn’t helped that I’ve been depressed anyway for the last two months. It’s easy for a little thing, like disappointment in my dissertation results to send me somewhere dark.

I’ve completed my amendments, which were mostly typos, because of my sticky ‘h’ key 😀 and submitted it via turnitin. I’ve got to get it printed and bound at the university library and hand it in by 12th December, so I’d better get on with that.

So, what else have I been up to?

I’m working on a short sci-fi story, that I hope will be the first in a series of three linked stories. A ship five hundred years from now is sent to retrieve a probe sent out two centuries before, but nothing goes to plan.

I’ve started another WEA course, the follow up to the one I did last year. So far we’ve covered using radiation to investigate crimes, like art fraud and injuries, and blood spatter patterns. Tomorrow it’s ‘UV light and high intensity radiation in crime investigations’, according to the lesson plan. Should be interesting.

I’m reading some books for next month’s review schedule, and other books I’me reading because I’m interested in them. Some will get reviews, some won’t. Depends on how I feel.

Right, that’s it. Enjoy the day.

Dissertation Update: Week ‘I have no idea’!

Morning all. I slept downstairs last night, because the air was too hot in my room. It’s much cooler in the living room. My back aches a bit because the ‘put u up’ bed isn’t the most comfortable, but it makes a change from spending the night sliding down the bed and getting up by rolling on to the floor. My bed is broken.

But, back to the dissertation.

Where did I get to? Did I tell you I’d sent the complete draft to my dissertation supervisor and asked how I make the good essay excellent? I got a response and ad a two week breakdown? Yes, I think I did.

Right then, week before last I decided to tackle it again and got the introduction done before having another breakdown, then last Wednesday I got up early and was suddenly able to write. 2000 words just flowed. Actually, I did some cutting and pasting from the old essay, adding some stuff, took some other stuff out, and produced something.

Honestly, I wasn’t happy with it, but I sent it to the dissertation supervisor anyway.

Yesterday I got a response. The critique is excellent, I’m ‘nearly there’ but the bibliography needs to be longer, twice as long.

Guess what I spent yesterday evening doing? To be fair, I had referenced books but had forgotten to add them to the bibliography, so it wasn’t much work to add them. Then I had to raid my library for the books that had helped with some of my ideas. The thing is, I pick up information from all sorts of books, articles, web pages, talking to people, etc. and synthesise them into a whole picture. But I can’t necessarily tell you were the individual information came from. It’s a bit of a bugger when I have to provide references and reading suggestions…

Anyway, the bibliography is now twice as long, and it may get longer, I have a few doctoral theses to read that I found on the subject of crime fiction. And I’m sure there were some books I borrowed from the university library last year that should go in there too.

Dissertation Update: Week 10

I am stressed. I think I’ve got the creative part of the dissertation done, but it’s the essay i’m struggling with. I’ve written one, that my supervisor says is ‘good’, but I want excellent. I emailed to ask how I get to excellent from good and he sent me a paragraph of advice, full of words that I can’t make any sense of. I haven’t really done any ‘academic’ English studies for ten years, and I only got as far as ‘AS’ English Literature (I couldn’t afford to do the full ‘A’ Level), so I’m not sure about things like ‘intertextuality’ and ‘a feminist reading’. I can talk about structure and timing, and the traditions of the genre in general terms, but I don’t know how to make it sound intelligent, if that makes any sense?

It all seems a bit too much right now. My sister has a copy of everything and is going to read it to see if she can help me make sense of everything, and I’m having a couple of weeks away from the dissertation, I need some space to think.

I finally have the dissertation guidance sheet that everyone apparently got during last term. But I didn’t. I remember my course colleague mentioning it when I was off one week, and asking the tutor for a copy the next week, but I was fobbed off and never got a copy. The course leader, my supervisor, seemed very short about having to send me it attached to the email I received. I let him know that while everyone else may have had it ‘ages ago’, I hadn’t received any guidance whatsoever. So I finally know what the order of presentation should be and when the hand in is. 19th September is D-Day. I suppose I’d better start saving up for train fare.

As I’m taking a break from dissertation writing to let my brain cogitate on the essay for a bit, there probably won’t be any dissertation updates until August now.

In other news, I’m meeting my support worker this afternoon, my lawn has finally started regrowing, and I got some lovely late birthday gifts from my friends Aimee and Fiona this last week. They know how to keep me happy, and quiet. 😀


Dissertation update: Week 9

I got a bit of feedback from my supervisor earlier in the week on the most recent draft. Still need more of the city in the description. So on Wednesday morning I added 1400 words describing the first trip Lucie and Robbie take from Nettleham to Washingborough adding lots of details about the route and scenery.

Google Maps is a life saver! I’d mostly remembered the route correctly but it helped to have it mapped out with images.

Apparently the essay is good now. I just need to get everything arranged properly for the final presentation, provided my supervisor is happy with the creative piece.

I’m other writing news, I managed a thousand words this morning and a read through of everything I’d written so far of Her Last Death. I’m up to 21949 words now. I’m hoping to reinstate my 1000 words a day policy but it depends on what else is going on. I’m currently achy as hell but I can’t decide why. I think I’m going to do nothing this weekend.

In reading news, I’ve read one of the London Mysteries I’m reviewing a week today, and my copies of Wrecker and Whiskey Tango Foxtrot which I’ll be reviewing later in the month have arrived.

I’m what else I’m doing news, my rainbow draft excluder is coming along nicely, the garden is beginning to pick up and my cross-stitch is looking okay. I’ve been swimming and to the AAF café this week. That’s probably why I ache, I’ve pushed myself a bit. Oh, and next week I meet my support worker!

Dissertation Update: Week 8

No news this week, I sent a slightly altered version to my supervisor last Friday and haven’t heard back yet.

On the creative side, I spent an hour with google maps and satellite images,  and now I have a more precise idea of where in the city Lucie is living and have tried to add details to the manuscript.

On the essay side, I tried again without the ‘I’, and I’m a bit more hopeful about this effort. I’ll get there eventually.

Dissertation Update: Week 7

I’ve had a week off from the dissertation. It was my birthday last Sunday, but I’d had so much on in the preceding days that I mostly ate, napped and read, especially after the anxiety-provoking disaster that was trying to go to Lidl. I’ve had a book shopping spree, and I’m expecting four more books, birthday presents mostly. Also, my book from Tess the Neurodivergent Goddess arrived, so that’s been added to the pile. If you follow me on GoodReads, you’ll have some idea of the number of books I’ve devoured in this last week. It’s very calming. I’m at 49 of 100 books read on my reading challenge.

I have actually done some work on my dissertation today, I made some changes to the essay to remove the ‘I’, and I added some books to the bibliography. I like a good bibliography. All nice and alphabetically ordered. I’m currently reading Odd Girl Out by Laura James, an autistic woman who got her diagnosis as an adult. It is interesting to see the similarities and differences in out experiences. This is one of the books I’ve added to the bibliography. I want Lucie to have the same experiences and responses to situations that a real autistic woman would have, and reading various accounts, both in books and online, has added to my own lived experience in the writing process.