List! List! O, List!

So you know that burn-out that everyone told me would happen right after my written exams but never really happened so I just kept steam-rolling ahead to clear the projects off my desk which had back-piled while I was too busy worrying about comps?

Yea… it’s finally hit me.

Travel beer is fundamental; this was mine during my layover in DC last week

Travel beer is fundamental; this was mine during my layover in DC last week

After I got home from Blackfriar’s I had an initial rush and wave of inspiration, but that quickly faded with the realization of how very much work I have to do in the next few weeks and how very little time I have to do it in.

It got to the point where, when I received some updated information on my flight for this weekend (two conferences in three weeks, I realize every time, is never a good idea), I actually began to dread leaving my lair.  This is particularly odd for me since I love to travel, I’ve never been to Texas (this weekend’s conference is ASTR in Dallas), and I have always wanted to ride a mechanical bull.

“Plugging away” has become an artform in my life since I started the PhD.  “Making something out of nothing” (generally work out of less than zero energy) should really be listed as a special skill on my resume.

When I start to feel this way, one of the few things that I can depend on to keep me going is a copious number of lists.  Whenever I feel overwhelmed about the amount of work on my desk, I make a list: here’s what I have to do today.  Whenever I feel like I might not get to sleep because I’m worried about how much I have to do the next day, I make a list: here’s what I have to do tomorrow.  Recently, a new kind of list has entered my life: here’s what I have to do before I get on an airplane to go to the next conference (in the case of that list, I was even able to schedule when these tasks would get done and sketch out my week that way so that whenever I had that creeping “I’m forgetting something” feeling, I could just re-check my work schedule and make sure I had everything under control which, generally, I did).

Lists help me to prioritize my work.  Sometimes, I include “optional” tasks at the bottom of

moody shot of my desk last night; complete with tea!

moody shot of my desk last night; complete with tea!

my lists (“in case you finish all of this, also do this!”).  This keeps me from being overwhelmed, but also allows me to stretch to finish all of my tasks.  I am the kind of person who really can’t relax unless I am absolutely certain that everything which can be taken care of has been (even niggling e-mails will bother me unless they are sent).  My lists help assure me that yes, I can take a break right now without worrying that something is left undone.

I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I am definitely not there yet.  One way or another, as George R.R. Martin would remind us, winter is coming.  And in this case that isn’t so horribly bad because winter means break time.  I just need to make sure all of my work gets done first.


I have just returned from Shakespeare Camp and OH MAN am I excited.

In this case, “Shakespeare Camp” is the 2013 Blackfriars Conference.  Held every other year, the conference is hosted by the American Shakespeare Center at the Blackfriars Playhouse in Staunton, Virginia.  On odd numbered years, this sleepy little town (charming to us city-folk) plays host to the hoard of Shakespeareans who descend en masse to give papers, hear keynotes, drink copiously, and network network network.

This year, I gave a paper on my work surrounding the African Grove Theatre’s production

A particularly dramatic moment of my presentation  captured by the wonderful Amy Wratchford of the ASC

A particularly dramatic moment of my presentation
captured by the wonderful Amy Wratchford of the ASC

of Richard III.  It was received extremely well and I spent the rest of the conference in scholar heaven with loads of encouragement, plenty of questions, and oodles of intellectual fodder.  Sometimes, it really takes another eye to help take your work to the next level.  In this case, I had a couple hundred eyes and I’m so excited by all the questions and feedback that I got.

This was a very long conference.  I didn’t make it down until Wednesday afternoon, but it technically begins on Tuesday evening and stretches until Sunday.  Essentially, that’s a week’s worth of work that we all miss to come and play with each other at the Blackfriars.  By the end of the conference, you’re tired (sessions begin at 8AM and often don’t end until midnight, and that’s not even counting post-panel drinks and networking at the hotel bar which is amongst the most important part of what we do at conferences), you’re stressed out by the amount of work that’s lurking on your desk and has accumulated since you’ve left, but you’re invigorated.

For me, the beauty of a good conference is the amount of inspiration it provides.  I always know that a conference was worthwhile if I come home really ready to attack my work so that I can meet newfound goals provided by the conferencing atmosphere.  Especially given the amount of mental drain that I’ve experienced over the past several months due to the examination process, this was a much-needed rejuvenation.

Another very neat aspect of these things is that since everyone goes to them you get to meet people from fellow graduate students all the way to superstar academics.  On Friday morning I sat in a keynote given by Russ McDonald.  It was interesting and he was absolutely charming, but here was the best part:

Another presentation shot; this one courtesy of Eric Johnson of the Folger Shakespeare Library

Another presentation shot; this one courtesy of Eric Johnson of the Folger Shakespeare Library

Six years ago, in my undergrad, I spent a summer researching in Stratford upon Avon.  It was one of the first times that I had a taste of what “real” research is like, and certainly was the first time I had been given the opportunity to do archival work.  It was the first time that I really realized this could be a life choice, that I could possibly spend the rest of my life doing this.  I’d say that, while it wasn’t my first date with Will, it was definitely the moment when things got serious.

As preparation for that trip, I had to read several introductory articles and books (including things by McDonald… Russ, not Old).  I will be honest and say that it’s not something I think about every day, or even every week, but as I sat in that keynote address, I suddenly remembered the feeling of reading that work.  The over-arching wonder that I was going to be visiting (and living in) Stratford; that I would walk those streets; that I would see those shows in that place.  When I remembered that, everything just clicked into place and I had a feeling of vertigo.  How far had I come in six years; how much had I experienced.  It all flew past me like some sappy eighties montage culminating with a thunking landing on that seat in the Blackfriars playhouse.

So here’s to the last six years; and the next six years; and all the intervals in between.

A shot of the last panel of the conference starring the infamous ASC bear which chases you offstage if you go over your allotted time

A shot of the last panel of the conference starring the infamous ASC bear which chases you offstage if you go over your allotted time

Let’s see how productive I can be in the interim between Blackfriars so that next time (October 2015) I can re-encounter old acquaintances with new vigor, new stories, and new bylines on my CV.

So now: back to your regularly scheduled programing.

Getting Ready for an Adventure

Ah the magic of conference prep.

How is it that I always manage to convince myself that writing the conference paper is the hard part?  How is it that when it comes time to actually pack, and plan, and travel, I then remember that the paper, while the focus of the voyage, is small pickings compared to

My desk.  I will miss it!

My desk. I will miss it!

hotel arrangements, packing, planning snacks, planning meals, figuring out how to dress, networking, figuring out how much work to bring, figuring out how much work I can miss, planning travel-knitting, planning travel reading, not forgetting dumb stuff like a cell phone power cable, transportation arrangements to/from airport on either side, and oh yea!  Blogging!  And whatever other projects I’m working on….

I’m leaving on Wednesday morning for Staunton, Virginia to participate in the 7th biennial Blackfriars Conference where I hope to spend a glorious five days absolutely steeped in Shakespearean Geekery.  My panel is at 9AM on Friday, in case you were somehow magically in the Shenandoah Valley and wanted to say hi.  In the interim, I will be panicking about the things I’m (probably not) forgetting and hoping that I don’t insult anyone by saying something utterly dumb about bad Hamlet quartos.  I may check in again later this week, but if I don’t, rest assured that I am not dead… just in Virginia.

Notes from the Road

A few passing remarks about CDC 2013 composed from an airport because the minute I hit the ground in Boston I have to deal with the mess I left on my desk in order to accommodate being at this conference:

There’s something to be said for conferencing in packs.  I’m fortunate enough to attend a

walking into the Fells in Baltimore; lovely!

walking into the Fells in Baltimore; lovely!

program that hits certain conferences en force.  CDC is a favorite of the Tufts crew (or, as we were dubbed by one of our dinner companions last night, the Tuftskrüe) for a variety of reasons: the timing for both its abstract deadline and the conference itself is ideal for our projects, the subject matter/conference theme fits our projects well, it’s close enough to home to not be a ridiculously expensive trip, and the general level of discourse is nice and comfortable without being over or under whelming.  It’s a very friendly conference and one that welcomes graduate students with open arms (which we appreciate).  Because there are many of us, we tend to make an impression.  So not only is it neat to be recognized as “oh, you’re one of the Tuftskrüe!”, but it also helps your recognizability and memorability; basically your conferencing street cred.  Also; it’s great not to have to dine alone if you don’t want to.

My panel was extremely well attended and there were some great ideas tossed around the room.  It was, dare I say, fun.  While I always enjoy giving presentations of my work, I don’t always enjoy the presentations of others on my panel.  This panel was assembled of myself and a paper on the usage of excrement in Jarry’s Ubu Roi so, really, it was a recipe for awesomeness.  Many thanks to those who were there, those who spoke to me after the panel, and those I ran into over the course of the weekend who complimented my work!  It was great to have met all of you and I look forward to seeing you again in the future either here or somewhere in the great big conferenceverse outside.

Seriously, graduate students, stop dressing like you’re trying to be a grown up without actually committing to the role.  Put down the jeans, put on a pair of slacks, and leave the sneakers at home.  When you have tenure, you will have plenty of time to dress however you want; but for now for the love of all things bardy it won’t kill you to look nice.  Also, if your paper is selected for a conference, that’s wonderful.  Congrats!  But now it’s your job to figure out what a conference paper should read like.  Here are a few hints: it shouldn’t be a fifteen-minute plot re-hash of some lesser-known work without any synthesis whatsoever, it shouldn’t have enough fifty-cent words that you lose your audience in the process of “enlightening” them, and it shouldn’t be dry, monotonic, or snooze-worthy.  I would love to hear more papers from people who sound like they’re actually excited to be working on what they’re presenting.  It doesn’t make you less intelligent if you have some enthusiasm for your own work.  I promise.

CDC is a really great conference because it attracts a wide array of scholars from various areas: English Lit, Theatre, Comp Rhet, and Translation Studies just to name a few.  Because of this, I always wind up meeting a variety of interesting folks with a variety of interesting fields.  Also because of this, my ideas resound differently here than they do at ASTR for example.  I come to CDC to hear a multiplicity of opinions from some extremely intelligent and diverse intellects.  For that, this year was very Shakespeare-heavy!  How neat!  The only downside to this is that because one can’t actually count on speaking to a room of folks whose expertise closely matches our own, we spend a great deal of time engaging a listening audience with current discourse surrounding our ideas.  I heard a lot of plot summaries, theory primers, and overall exposition over the course of the weekend.

Lovely chandeliers in the theatre where our conference play occurred

Lovely chandeliers in the theatre where our conference play occurred

It’s a fine line to walk here between “not enough” and “too much” and I think, unfortunately for those already acquainted with the subject areas discussed, that folks tend towards the “not enough” which sometimes doesn’t leave room for arguments to fully develop.  I don’t think there’s a real way around this because of the layout of the conference, and I suppose that the real answer is to catch up with speakers in the hotel bar and ask more detail about discussed arguments, but I can still lament that there will always be more unsaid in this kind of format.

A few conference faux-pas that I saw enacted this weekend which annoyed me enough that I will reiterate their gaucheness here: when the moderator stops you because you’ve run over time, don’t question it.  The moderator is just doing his/her job and you should have timed your presentation.  If you are using technology in your presentation, make it a point to arrive in your room ten minutes before your panel and TEST the technology so that you don’t hold up the entire panel because you can’t get an adaptor to work with your mac.  Rehearse your presentation and eliminate speech disfluencies like “like” or “uhm”.  Especially when there are going to be theatre people in the room whose job it is to beat this sort of thing out of wide-eyed undergrads and thereby will be doubly annoyed that you, a so-called “professional”, can’t give a fluent presentation.

Alright; it looks like my flight will be boarding in short order.  I truly did have a marvelous conference and, as always, hope that next year will be even better than this year.  See ya, Baltimore!

Pre-Conference Panic

At its best, conferencing is both draining and stressful.  It’s also wonderful, horizon-broadening, and fun; but we cannot forget the fact that it involves many particulars which can be disruptive to the life of an average graduate student.

I love to travel and flying is a special treat.  It’s probably good that I chose a profession which allows me to do so on a regular basis (since I’ve been in the PhD I’ve averaged about 2.5 trips a year for various things).  That said, it always takes me a night to adjust to sleeping in a bed that’s not my own in a city that’s not my own away from my schedule, desk, library books, and on the whole away from my life.

It can be very unsettling to attend a conference when your life is bustling and the things

A shot I took last year of the conference hotel.  Pretty snazzy, no?

A shot I took last year of the conference hotel. Pretty snazzy, no?

you’re flying away from to spend a few days in an actual manifestation of the ivory tower are large and stressful.

Which is probably why I’m having such a hard time this week.  I’ve so far managed to recover from every little blunder (forgetting my iPad at home, nearly missing meetings, making minor scheduling errors which could have huge rippling effects on certain committees I’m chairing, etc.)  The worst part?  It’s only Tuesday.  I have plenty of time to make all kinds of crazy mistakes which could impact my future as I know it.

I’m trying to be methodical to head off any chance of large error; my paper is already printed, I’ve done the majority of my packing, my packing list is composed, I’m creating my usual conference redundancies (kits to deal with paper loss, bad breathe, bleeding, spills, etc.).  Despite this, I have the sneaking suspicion that I’m going to forget something and that something is going to be vital to my future as an academic.

I leave for Baltimore tomorrow.  If you’re at the Comparative Drama Conference, feel free to say hi and ask me if I’ve remembered my pants.  At this rate, there’s the very real possibility that I might be living that particular anxiety dream.

On the Road Again

Hello, everyone!

I’m reporting to you live from Nashville where I have arrived safe and sound after a day of

take-off in Boston

travel which included (in no particular order): one big plane, one puddle jumper, chicks with guitars, writing, reading, copious amounts of coffee, and a ten-minute scramble to get from one end of O’Hare’s terminal H to the extreme opposite (on that note: I sincerely apologize if you were literally run over by a shortish New Yorker in a red leather jacket while innocently ambling your way through Terminal H today).

I’m wiped.

I’m here in Nashville to attend the 2012 American Society of Theatre Research conference. It’s a bigun’ with a whole lot of people from all sides of the theatre academic world; from Ancients to Contemporarists, from lowly graduate students to heads of departments. This mixing makes for an almost overwhelming environment and, even walking into the hotel, I could feel the excitement and anticipation in the air. Or maybe it’s just me.

Told ya. Chicks with guitars. Didn’t even have to leave the airport to find them.

I’m a little nervous as this is the biggest conference I’ve attended yet, but I have some good meetings lined up and I’m hopeful that I will learn a great deal, meet a great many people, and retain some measure of my sanity. Maybe even escape the hotel to hear some good music as the Country Music Awards are in town this weekend!

Have a great one, I’ll catch you on the flip side!


So I had a great time at the Comparative Drama Conference this weekend.  The ideas batted around were interesting, the company couldn’t be beat, and I managed to sneak off for a bit to visit the dolphins.

Over the course of the weekend, I also had a lot of time to do some thinking about my practices as a girl living in the digital era and how this relates to my job as an academic.

One of the highlights of the weekend was having the opportunity to live-tweet the keynote (a Q/A session with playwright Paula Vogel who, by the way, is the most charming,

Myself and my Tufts companions with keynote speaker Paula Vogel

intelligent, and wonderful lesbian playwright I’ve ever met) with a colleague of mine whom I had followed on twitter for a long time but never met before.  Through the beauty of hash tags, we managed to find each other.  This gave us the chance to discuss our experiences with the digital realm and how these experiences reverberate into our scholarship.

So there I was, buzzing with excitement about the twenty-first century and all the lovely things that it could offer us, when one of my Tufts compatriots mentioned that he felt that the practice of live tweeting was rude.

Now, it’s not that I haven’t given this notion some previous thought.  It occurs to me every time I sit down to class and open my netbook for notes.  There is some amount of trust implicit in the professor/student relationship that the students, all of whom are plugged in at this juncture to some degree, are paying attention, are taking notes, and are not spending the class period playing facebook games or checking their e-mail.

I have wondered at the boundaries of respect and net-etiquette for some time.  There are clearly some things that are okay, and clearly some things that are not okay, but what about the gray areas?  Live tweeting, after all, is just a form of note taking.  It’s a public archival project with the end result being to disseminate information to individuals who can’t be present at the place and time of the tweet, but who may want to somehow be a part of what is happening in the room.  What’s the difference between me typing a note in a word document and me typing a note on my twitter feed besides the public act that it entails?

I recognize that there are certain things which should not be tweeted (or facebooked, or blogged about…).  The digital age has served to do many things and one of them is to peel back layers of privacy nearly to the point of transparency.  The scary thing about this is it’s not just what one chooses to share about herself which creates her web presence, it’s also what other people share about her.  If someone chooses to tweet a conversation which we had presumably in private, there’s little I can do about it besides request that the offending tweets be removed.  And even then, by the time I notice that something may be wrong, there’s a good chance that a large contingency has already seen the offensive material.

So here are some lists of protocol which I follow for live-tweeting.  Please note: this is a work in progress and far from a perfect system (yet).  In the year to come, I will be working on an exciting project which will force me to constantly re-evaluate this criterion (more on my project as details firm up).  For now, though, here’s some good common sense advice to ensure that you keep yourself out of trouble while staying connected in the digital age.


*Cite your sources if you are quoting – use “@twitterID” if the individual is on twitter so that he may receive notification of your tweet.  If the individual is not on twitter, use a hash tag for better archival practice.

*Be true to the spirit of your source.  Since twitter only gives you 150 characters to express a sentiment, that sentiment can often get clipped into sound bytes.  Do not misrepresent your source simply because you ran out of room.

*Be aware that your source also has a web presence and be respectful of that – don’t tweet something you would feel uncomfortable sharing to a roomful of strangers even if that something is about someone else.

It is Inappropriate to…

*Tweet direct quotes from unpublished material.  Conferencing gives you a great inside look at what your colleagues are working on; don’t violate that trust by publishing their work before they get a chance to.  Yes, tweeting on the internet is a form of publication.

*Tweet something said in confidence.  This includes: something said behind a closed office door (without prior approval to share it), something remarked in passing which may or may not be appropriate outside of context, or something you read off a colleagues paper when asked for feedback about said piece.  Despite the digital revolution, boundaries still exist.  We need to be respectful of them lest the practice of tweeting be forever banished from serious conversation.

*Tweet while speaking one-on-one with someone at dinner, after a panel, or in the conference lounge.  This is just a matter of courtesy.  Eye contact is good for the soul.

*Tweet something if someone has specifically asked you not to.  As we progress into the digital revolution, we will see more and more integration of technology into all parts of our work.  We will also see people who aren’t entirely comfortable with this yet.  If someone requests that his panel be tweet-blind, you have to respect that.

Try to…

*Ask for permission whenever possible.  If you’re unsure, ask!  Wouldn’t you rather someone be flattered that you want to publicize her work than angry that you shared it without her knowledge?

*Sit at the back of the room if you plan to live-tweet.  People behind you may find your screen distracting, and the panelists may find it difficult to speak while looking at the top of your head.

That’s all the news for now.  I’m diving into some pretty work-intense weeks in this final swathe of the semester, but that just means that there will be more exciting updates in the days to come.  Now: more Strindberg.  Blergh.

Ready for my Close-up

Now that I’ve had a few days in my own home to marinate, I’d like to give you more of an inside peek of my trip to California before I’m off again to Baltimore on Wednesday.

The Conference

I arrived at the conference hotel when it was full dark and checked into my room in time for a shower and some quality time with my book before going to sleep with the knowledge that my conference companion would be busting in the hotel room door somewhere around one AM.  Conference buddies, by the by, are must-haves!  Academia is a transient profession.  As romantic as “THE IVORY TOWER” sounds, the more I am imbued within it the more I tend to think of it as a floating castle.  I would LOVE for there to be one, giant, gleaming white citadel with an expansive library, plenty of sunny reading nooks, and unlimited amounts of coffee.  In reality, what the academy really is is a few musty offices in under-funded departmental buildings, subterranean seminar rooms with too many chairs and not enough windows, desks upon desks located within peoples’ own homes, stacks of library books, all connected by a global network via the internet and well-placed e-mails exchanges across this rainbow bridge of a pipewire.
Conferences, however, are where all this becomes tangible.  You find yourself in a room full of people who have read the things you’ve read, want to talk about the things that you want to talk about, and can bat around theory over lunch.  You put some booze into these people and suddenly you’re talking about the symbolist reading of zombies in Romero’s movies, or how Bahktin would have read “The Hunger Games”.

Since we are so spread out, so widely arrayed across the globe, it’s inevitable that your friends will move.  You will move too.  And conferences are places where you can double-team your agenda: see your friends, and make professional connections!  Talk about a win!

In this case, I was slotted to spend the weekend with a close friends whom I got my Master’s with in New Jersey before he moved to Pittsburg and I moved to Boston.  As fate has these things, we reunited in San Diego.

Said friend and I getting all gradi-fi-cated with our Masterses.

According to said friend, I “sleep like a Viking” because his entry into the room didn’t even stir me from slumber.  I woke the next morning excited to catch up with him, and buzzing for the conference.

And to top it off, there were palm tress outside my window!

Conference strategy number one: at check in, read through the schedule and highlight panels you may want to see.  You will be too tired throughout the day to really think about what is/was interesting to you, so do yourself a favor and set up your schedule early.  If there’s a window of time in which the panels don’t speak to you (or they’re about texts you haven’t read), skip them!  Go take a nap!  Decompress in your hotel room!  You will need it, trust me.

So day one was spent flitting from panel to panel, enjoying the wonderful conference-provided lunch, and looking forward to relaxing at the post-day-one reception.

And relax we did.  Wine, dinner, lovely company, and a chance to chat with all the smart people whom I had seen speak that day (including the key-note who was downright brilliant, and a woman, score for intellectual femme fatale!).

My panel, as I have mentioned, was the first panel on day two so I went to bed early in order to be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed for said panel.

A note: I have never been to a conference (and especially a small conference) where coffee wasn’t available in copious amounts.  At this particular conference, there was a coffee break between every single panel.  This meant the very real danger of over-caffeinating.  BEWARE the over-caffeination!  It can make you feel icky, shaky, and off your game – the last thing you want when you’re trying to present your work.

Day two was slightly more difficult to get through since I have a low threshold for “sit and listen” and an even lower threshold for “social hour”.  I did take a break towards the end of the day and spent some much-needed decompression time in my room rather than be disrespectful to the panelists whose panel I would otherwise have glazed my way through.  In the future, I intend to pace myself a bit better – I’m bad at this – and take breaks BEFORE I feel my brain leak out my ears in an effort to prevent said brain leakage.


My fabulously talented brother, as you know, is a Hollywood filmmaker.  After the conference, since I had flown all the way out to his coast, I spent some time living his glamorous lifestyle.

As a theatre girl, it was extremely interesting to see how the other half lives.  I got to sit in on

Said photoshoot in progress. That's a lot of blood!

production meetings, locations scouts, and even a photo-shoot where I wound up lending a hand as a special effects makeup artist (they were running short on hands and time and, lucky enough, I have the skills to fill in for something like this).  We used more fake blood than I can really relate in writing, but the product looked really cool and I think the photographer got what he was looking for so it was a win overall.

Conclusion: Hollywood ain’t for me.  There is an art to what they do out there, but it’s very different from what I’m used to.  Creativity is expressed as an entire project rather than an individual outlet.  In the words of my brother “everyone is allowed to be a little creative in their own niche”.  I suppose, in a way, the same is true of theatre, but I truly feel that theatre is a less limiting media.  While everyone working on an individual project is in some way limited, adding technology to the mix both curtails and bolsters the abilities of the artists to fabricate a universe.  People become slaves to the technology; the camera dictates what can and cannot be done.  Actors fill into slots on the screen, really just becoming giant puppets rather than living people.  This isn’t the illusion that we get, though.  As a film audience, we see something encompassing, something close, a false portrayal of intimacy.  We are situated as physically closer to the images on the screen since a camera can zoom into something the way a theatre audience cannot, but the human connection is gone.  We connect with light and sound, not actual people.

That, however, is a philosophical difference that I don’t think I have room to go into here.  It deserves its own podcast, actually…. Hm….

I suppose that any of this is also dependant upon the individual project and the spirit of that project.  An attitude of acceptance and cooperation will go a long way in any artistic endeavor, while creative animosity only leads to a stifling and stuffy product.


My brother also took me to the BIGGEST BESTEST USED BOOK STORE EVER! I felt like Belle in the Library!

Due to an extreme amount of self-discipline, I was able to accomplish everything I had slotted for plane-time work.  Six hours on an airplane can just fly (heh… get it?  Fly?) when you’re trying to avoid doing the homework you brought, but luckily I managed to eke it out before my will drained to empty.  Pro tip: work first, goof off with in-flight movies second.  That way you have a built-in reward for finishing your stuff, and you don’t have to panic when the plane is landing and you’re still frantically re-writing your conference paper.

So now I’m spending a few blissful nights reunited with my own glorious bed before I jet off again.  After that, it’s smooth (if packed chock full) sailing until the end of the semester.  I think these few days have allowed me to put out the major fires and that I’ll be at a manageable work-load if I continue at a good clip.

…I’ve been wrong before though, and my histrionics definitely make for more flavorful blogging.

The Scottish Play

Now that I’m sitting at my own desk and have my full computing capacity (my netbook is wonderful for some tasks, but its tiny brain combined with bad hotel wireless connections can be extremely limiting), I’d like to share with you the talk I gave this past weekend.  It’s entitled “The Scottish Play” and was presented at the National Gothic Fiction Conference in San Diego, CA on March 17, 2012.

This is a bit unconventional for an academic to be posting her work in such a public forum, but the way I see things: once it’s out there, it’s out there.  I’m not bashful about the quality of my work, I’m proud of my presentation style, and I truly think that the academy is an institution based upon the primary precept of sharing ideas.  So here’s some food for thought for you, I hope you enjoy it!