I realized a little while ago that, with this academic fellowship the last two years, I've been getting paid to do research that's likely to form the background to one or more books, both academic/non-fiction and creative. Not only to learn the methods I need to do the research well, but also to sit and generate ideas and let them simmer until they're ready to come out.
Granted, I haven't just been sitting, by any means. I've been, most of the time, working on an academic research project and such on top of the studying.
But all the same, I've had many moments of simmering, including that oh-so-crucial first semester. And, in the meantime, I'm learning how to write quickly when need be (I've always been an incredibly slow writer), so that when they're ready to shape themselves and I have the time to devote to writing said manuscripts, I'll be ready for them.
Even with my awareness of how insanely busy I've been during this time, that's pretty darned cool. After all, very few people get paid to stay alive and collect research material and to think things through during the early stages of a book-writing process. I'm incredibly grateful for the opportunity.
Friday, April 17, 2009
Moment of Realization
I'm a writer, an incurable reader, a narrative theorist, a media researcher, a scholar/author/writer/consultant, a PK, and the Queen of Soup Making. I write a lot, and I've taught a wide range of topics in universities. Along my journey I've picked up a PhD in Communication from Purdue and 2 degrees in English. I've been turning my ideas about communication as author-audience relationships into a communication paradigm that can be applied to a wide range of situations. I'm also writing a historical mystery series. I'm a member of Sisters in Crime, and the co-chair of the Mystery and Detective Fiction Caucus of the Popular Culture Association. My MA thesis focused on connections between T. S. Eliot and Thoreau, who each wondered about how to remain still and still moving. Before I went to grad school, I spent 7 years working for a division of HarperCollins Publishers.