Tuesday, 10 February 2015


If you know me in person, you know I hate deadlines. Or rather, I love them. I love knowing about them long in advance so that I can organise my time appropriately. I love completing a project well ahead of the deadline, just in case my computer should explode, or I should get hit by a meteor, or anything else that's appallingly unlikely but still within the realm of the possible.

So you will know that I have been positively writhing with anxiety over the deadline for graduation. You will note that I moved on quickly from relief at having passed my viva to anxiety over getting the revisions done and approved in time. Because graduation only happens once per year, in April, and in order to get into that ceremony you have to have everything topped and tailed by mid-February (that is, tomorrow).

I know, I know, it's only a ceremony, and it's not like I'm not a doctor-type until some guy in a velvet gown hands me a rolled-up piece of paper. But a year is a long time to wait. And I loooooves me some ceremony! That floppy hat has been my number one motivation all along!

So after some administrative hurdles that stretched out my timing as long as they possibly could, combined with some superhuman efforts on the parts of several people to make up for that stretched time, I have officially topped and tailed this PhD and received confirmation from the Admin Person In Charge that I have, indeed, COMPLETED MY PHD and MET THE DEADLINE FOR GRADUATION!

With one effing day to spare!

My heart rate and cortisol levels may never recover... but neither will my OH MY FREAKIN' WOWZA JOY LEVELS!

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

and the result is...

Pass with minor revisions! Really teensie weensie little revisions!


I should do something all multimedia and performative and live and fabulous to convey my feelings, but I have those revisions to do, and I slept like crud last night. (My poor funding body has been sick and spent the night coughing up a lung, and I was so excited about yesterday I couldn't get back to sleep after he'd woken me up.) So activate your imaginations and picture me dancing across the room like a maniac after my esteemed examiners had left the building. Now picture that I would still be doing that if I could prop my eyelids open.

Tuesday, 20 January 2015

mock viva

Well, I survived my mock viva. I feel pretty confident about the thesis itself, and god knows I can talk for England, and the US as well, and probably a good chunk of the rest of the northern hemisphere.

But the question is this. Can I, at a given point and in reference to a particular topic, remember, out of the thousands of ideas flitting around inside my head, which one is:
A) the most relevant,
B) the safest - in terms of not opening doors for my examiners to wander through uninvited,
C) the one I can articulate most cleanly,
and most importantly,
D) the one I actually wrote about in the actual flippin' thesis I'm being examined on


When I can manage to pluck the right idea out of the thousands, I'm on a roll, no problem. But sometimes I just... start... talking... and some ideas come out... and I can tell they're not the zinger I was hoping for, so I just... keep... talking...

And this is a VERY BAD THING. I mean, these people have families and lives and dinners to get home to. In fact, one of them will most likely be missing dinner at home that night just to get his butt down to Guildford to examine me. I do not want to keep him from his rest because I'm too busy chasing down every stray tangent that happens to flit through my head.

So, my dear examiners, if you happen to be reading this, never fear. I am on the case. I am preparing to be pithy, I am exercising my excision, I am breathing in brevity. I will be as laconic as a it is possible to be while actually communicating complete thoughts.

Unless you ask me something really interesting...

Saturday, 3 January 2015

another project!

Merry new year, happy solstice, ho ho ho and all that. Belatedly.

Also belatedly, I'll be spending six months of 2015 working on another cool project! 'Storytelling for development', a CCNetwork+ project using digital storytelling to engage communities with redevelopment projects in their area and vice versa. And lo, there shall be live performance of said digital stories! And there shall be much rejoicing! Or at least some interesting data. Fingers crossed.