Fall semester of my final year of grad school has begun and I am in for the craziest, busiest, most stressful, physically exhausting, pushing the limit semester of my life. I'm excited and freaked out, pumped and fatigued, confident and weak as a kitten. Currently on my plate:
a) Two classes: Archives and Boxmaking. The trouble with doing two programs at once, especially when one is purely creative and the other is purely theoretical, is that your brain is constantly being pulled in two different directions. Working with your hands and seeing the world in words and images uses a completely different part of your intellect than writing papers, reading text books and sorting out the complexities of organizing data. The human brain is capable of sorting these differences out, but doing so simultaneously can force the brain to a complete shut down requiring massive amounts of bed rest aided by any of the following: chick flicks, action movies, or anything written by Ben Affleck and anything starring Casey Affleck.
2) I am now the Editor of the South East Guild of Bookworkers Newsletter
c) Internship: I am interning at the special collections library at the university working with the rare books curator specifically to get an understanding of how book arts and artists books are viewed from the library side. Already I'm in the process of creating a LibGuide for the Book Arts collection. This guide will have general information regarding book arts, related web links, and a description of the kinds of books within the collection. The goal of this guide is to be used by students in the MFA program. I am also assisting the cataloging department to create a current list of RBMS (Rare Books and Manuscript Section) terms for each book in the collection and making a comprehensive list of examples for these terms. The hope is that this list will inform the librarians on what areas the collection is missing teaching examples.
4) a new job.
e) Oh yeah, that pesky little THESIS looming over my head. To date, I've not yet written it. But that is not to say that I haven't been working on it. I have been making paper like a mad woman and currently have some 600 sheets of freshly made white cotton paper just itching to get some well placed ink all over them. I also just got a CD full of images that I will be finding a way to use. Once I get this paper out from under me I'll get cracking on it.
6) Damn. I forgot about that paper.
g) On top of all of the a fore-mentioned craziness there is another amazing opportunity which might require much of my time and efforts this semester. The book arts department often collaborates with printmakers in Havana, Cuba. Book arts students make the paper and print the text then in the spring go to Havana to work with the artists on imagery and book structure to create a beautifully crafted artists' books. There is a possibility that we might engage in a collaboration this year. This means that I will most likely have to print another book before Christmas.
I'm exhausted just looking at this list. If only I could sleep...