Skip to main content

Snatching a Desperate Hour -- Writer's Poke #155

For Writers:

I needed to write my dissertation to finish, but the thought of writing something 200 pages long (and 200 pages would be on the short side) kept me from writing for five years.

Meanwhile, I was paying my tuition each semester so that I could stay active in the program. I pretended that I was just making an "alumni donation" to the university, and this was supposed to make me somehow feel better about paying out thousands of dollars just to keep the hope of finishing alive.

Then that May, I received my annual progress letter. There was a new graduate program director, and his letter indicated that they planned to deactivate me from the doctoral program. I wrote back and asked for one more chance, to which he responded: "You have until August 15."

In other words, I basically had three months to write and defend my dissertation. And guess what I did that summer? I wrote my dissertation. Something that I couldn't do in 5 years I was able to do in under 3 months -- all 240 pages worth.

What impossible acts have you been able to complete?

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible" -- Walt Disney

Comments

  1. I have come here from Mr. JOHN GUZLOWSKI's blog.

    I have read some of your posts and would like to revisit for more reading.

    If you like reading short stories from an Indian writer, then a visit to my blogs would be an interesting one for you.

    Naval Langa
    SHORT STORIES by NAVAL LANGA
    PAINTINGS GALLERIES

    Another Interesting Blog
    BIG CITIES OF INDIA

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you for dropping by Naval. I look forward to reading your stories.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Dear mr. Bret R. Fuller

    Here in India the university awards the degree of PhD (doctorate) after three years of struggling with a guide and then submitting the thesis.

    Naval Langa

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have a friend that teaches at my college; she still goes back to India to meet with her guide, and it's been much longer than three years... hopefully this year she will earn her PhD.

    India seems to have very strict graduate school requirements.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Summer Day Trip #1: Caledonia, Minnesota

The Wired Rooster Coffee Shoppe -- Caledonia, Minnesota


I've lived in Minnesota for over ten years, sure, but that doesn't mean I've actually seen much of the state. Like most people, I know what I know, and I go where I go. And that's the extent of it. But once I resigned myself to the fact that I wasn't going to make it to Alaska this summer, it occurred to me that I had plenty of sites to explore in the immediate region.

First stop: Caledonia, Minnesota. Where's that? It's a small town in the southeast corner of the state. Before I opened my Rand McNally Road Atlas, I had never heard of it, and before I punched the town name into Trip Advisor, I didn't know if there was anything there worth visiting.

Distance from home: About 75 miles.

Challenge #1: Leaving by 6:30 a.m.

Challenge #2: Taking my dog, Atticus.

Actually, Atticus is a good dog on a road trip, but the forecast indicated that it was going to get into the 90s. I wanted to leave early in the …