one more thing down, lots to go

About 30 seconds ago, I emailed the proposal for my DMA final project to my committee. (We don't call them "dissertations" here, oh no. Dissertations are what you do if you're a PhD student, not a lowly performance major.) This is something I had aimed to do by the end of the spring semester; in fact, technically it should have been officially accepted by the end of the last semester in order for me to turn in and defend my project this fall. I'm assuming (or just hoping) that if I get everything done and turned in by the October 15 deadline (eek!) they'll let me defend it and graduate anyway. (My project, by the way, is going to be producing and recording a full-length CD of songs by American composers. I'll spare you the specifics, but it's going to be cool.)

Why was I two months late turning it in? For starters, I ran into some logistical snags just before my original draft was ready to turn in. I won't go into details, but let's just say that after emailing various people in the middle of May, I'm still waiting to receive some unpublished scores, one set from a guy who's on vacation, and another set from (ahem) the composer himself who can't find his own songs. Until I am assured I'll get that music, I can't find singers to do the songs with parts of the project are at a standstill. I could have turned in the proposal with these unknowns; most projects end up different from the original proposal anyway. The point is to get your ideas down on paper so your committee knows you're intentions. But getting pregnant didn't help matters. The entire month of May I was so exhausted, it took 100% of my energy and then some to get through each day, which meant taking care of Daniel, practicing for SongFest, and ordering a lot of take-out because I was too tired to cook most of the time. It felt like a month-long hangover.

Now that my proposal is in the hands of my committee, however, I'm nervous. My teacher liked it (she saw a draft a little while ago), but I still worry that the others (especially the "academic" faculty members) won't find it scholarly enough, that they'll want me to bag the whole thing. It's that whole "What if I actually suck?" fear that many graduate students have, even after proving themselves time and time again.

Bah! Be gone with you, negativity and self-doubt! I banish thee!

There, I feel better.


Steph said…
I know what it feels like to have a major project held up by things beyond your frustrating, isn't it?

I find it just ludicrous to imagine that your committee members could possibly find your work not "academic" enough. I've known DMAs who couldn't reason their way out of a paper bag, let alone carry themselves off as academics. I suspect you'll be fine.
You'll be great, Suze! Fuhgedaboudit!

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