Six Months Later; Six Months to Go

Summer is here. Another term over. A trip out of Canada looms. And what about Covid?

I’m sure I’m not the only one that continues to find the whole world disorienting. From pandemic to pending world war to global warming, foreseeable famine, inflation, labor shifts, miserable politics, and the demise of Netflix, it’s like you can’t find stability anywhere anymore.

I probably feel sorriest for the kids, though. As a parent I am increasingly aware that the lessons the kids are learning may not be the ones they are going to need. I worry that we’ll raise a generation of kids who will be so accustomed to homebound leisure time that they won’t be ready to suffer in the ways that nature is bringing. And let’s face it, Nature is bringing its A-game.

I hope I’m wrong.

I’ve wrapped another term, this one under the tutelage of Adam McOmber. I managed to finish up my critical thesis on narcissism in first-person narration, revisiting a few classics like American Psycho, Lolita, and The Talented Mr. Ripley. I had to read a fair amount of work on rhetoric which was interesting, and adjacent to a lot of craft books I’ve read.

And now, I’m solidly into the book. Probably sitting around a hundred pages, it has some good stuff. Ghosts, psychosis, death, mystery, historically famous characters. It’s by far the hardest thing I have ever attempted to write, but thankfully I am slowly finding my way through it. If nothing else (and there is so much else) the master’s program is giving me a framework to kick my own ass into gear.

Six months ago I was trying to find the tagline for my writing, the elevator-pitch one-liner that summarizes my work. I feel that pressure a little less these days, maybe I’m just heartened by the fact that I’ve made a lot of work (around 350 pages in the last year-and-a-half) and that maybe there’s no way to simplify all them words.

Next week I’m off to residency. Living in a dorm for the first time since medical school. Of course, Montpelier is a little different than Washington Heights in the late-90s (car alarms, ice cream trucks, and salsa music) but ideally I’ll return refreshed, inspired, and with a few thousand more words towards the finish line.