So, I have come to the conclusion that I have been approaching the whole PhD thing all wrong. Meaning, I have been thinking that I would prepare for it like I did my master’s degrees (study like crazy for the GRE, write like crazy for the writing portion, edit like crazy for the writing portion, and get everything in QUICKLY!!!). I have been kicking myself for not being able to produce like I was when I was preparing my MA/MLIS application, and then I had My Epiphany.

The reason that I was able to produce was because I was running on adrenaline. I had just returned from home (Michigan) to Vermont after completing two weeks of funeral activities–burying my cousin, not being able to say goodbye (that part I still hate–I think it would have been better if it was cancer or something slow so I could have prepared myself), general grieving activities. The world was moving way to slow for me and I had plenty of time to prepare an application and teach because I never slept.

Now, things are a bit different. First, I am working a full time job and teaching. So, I still have my crazy need to do more than everyone else, but I also get tired more quickly than I did “back in the day”. I can’t teach, prep, tutor, and be involved in church WHILE preparing for a GRE (writing a new story, editing an essay from graduate school, studying like crazy for the GRE, etc…).

So, this is where my change of heart came. Specifically, some things that are going to change.

* I am not going to write a new story. Since graduation, I have had 4 stories published (“one shot wonders”), but I have yet to publish anything that I wrote for graduate school. No, I take that back, I did publish Genesis in one of it’s many forms, and I am still not sure what to do with that. So, I have been hesitant to send those to the University of Denver because I am scared that they won’t be good enough. And that is always a possibility. I have been following a writer in the Denver area who is way more intellectual than I am and he was not accepted. That makes me nervous. However, then I discovered that many people think he is cocky, especially in his writing. So, maybe, his writing came across as too cocky? I’ll never know. But, I am hoping that humbleness and honesty will gain me some points.

* I am still going to study for the GRE like crazy, as much as possible. Those of you who know me understand that my standardized testing skills are about as good as my synchronized swimming skills which are non-existent.

* I am going to give myself time. I have been so worried about disappointing and/or frustrating people (especially those that I have asked to write letters), that I am pushing myself in ways that I shouldn’t be. If the application process takes two years, that’s okay. I can deal with that.

* I am going to believe myself. I’ve been saying that I am going to apply and then telling everyone, “But, I probably won’t get in.” Well, that’s just dumb.

* I prayed about it. God said yes. For those of you who “get” that, that’s huge. Me and God do prayer really well. Most of the time when I hear something from God (i.e. “Move to Colorado”), it happens. Sometimes I am left in the dust wondering why I thought God said something (i.e. “Marry Marty”), and then it doesn’t happen… but, I choose to believe the things I hear until God tells me something different or something happens that drastically changes the circumstances so there is no way it can happen.

* I am going to stop trying to read the entire canon of literary works between now and the time I apply. This, alone, has driven me to tears. I worry that because I haven’t read it the DU people will somehow be able to tell by reading my application–like there is some sort of embedded chip that says, “Sometimes she reads sappy mystery novels–DENY!!!!!”

That’s about it for now. I am going to keep updating here as things progress.

Good thoughts, prayers, encouragement, words of advice are all appreciated!

Advertisements