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Tue, Oct. 17th, 2006, 02:03 pm
Midterms Are Fun!

I should just rename Monday to “Jessica gets her butt kicked” day. Yesterday was particularly egregious, though. At about 2pm I discovered that I had a midterm today, so after a full day of classes, my playwriting class, and Gloria Mundi, I had to start studying, only to discover that I didn’t even have notes for the first week of class. Sigh. I hate tests where they actually expect you to know the material.

(That’s less snotty than it sounds, really. I find tests where I’m expected to understand and apply concepts to be much more conducive to a) actually learning something and b) demonstrating that on an exam. Facts I memorize don’t stay with me much longer than the time required to spit them back.)

Fortunately, the test went fine, so I’m not complaining. Ten days until my next midterm … wow, I’d forgotten what it’s like to have tests. I haven’t taken any tests (except one statistics exam and the GRE) since I graduated from college. Weird.

Also, for the record, Han Ong kicked my ass again last night. My new plan of “wear thick skin to class” definitely helped, but I’m a little puzzled as to whether he’s kicking my ass more or less than last week. This matters because I’d like to be moving my work in a positive direction, and I’m not sure whether or not I’m actually improving it with the changes I’ve made.

This week’s comments boiled down to: “Your premise is extremely strong and clever, but it’s overshadowing the rest of the play. How can you make your work less about the premise?” I see what he’s getting at, I think, but my initial reaction was, “You like what my play is about, but I should make it less about that?”

Anyhow, what this is telling me is that I should start recruiting readers and critics sooner rather than later, because everything he says to me is intensely useful, but I’d also like some help interpreting how to actually apply it to the work. Also I need people to whom I can be accountable once this class ends, because no accountability means no writing for Jess.

Accountability (and the clear goals it provides) is why I’m thinking about doing NaNoWriMo again, by the way. But if you love me you’ll discourage me from doing this, since I really do not have the time!