I have spent the first few weeks of the post-dissertation era trying to figure out what one does when one is not writing a dissertation.
Given how tremendously burnt-out I was when I finished the dissertation, I spent a few days vegging out, playing Sim City, and taking care of some minor editing. Once I recuperated a bit, I began taking care of some of the more tedious dissertation-related activities: formatting, printing, photocopying, mailing, and filling in paperwork. Now, after a couple of weeks, I am beginning to find myself craving projects again, which is good. I'm still a bit resistant to the idea of jumping headlong into another large-scale scholarly endeavor, but I intend to. For the time being, though, I want to focus on some of the things I relegated to the sidelines while writing the dissertation.
Of course, I still have my defense ahead of me. And that's no small thing. So I have been -- and will continue -- working on my dissertation topic for the foreseeable future.
In other Coetzee-related news, my chapter on teaching Disgrace in an existentially-focused literature course will appear in the MLA's upcoming volume, Approaches to Teaching Coetzee's Disgrace and Other Novels. Also, Modern Fiction Studies will be publishing my review of Stephen Mulhall's The Wounded Animal: J. M. Coetzee and the Difficulty of Reality in Literature and Philosophy. I wrote each of these while working on my Disgrace chapter last summer, so it's nice to see that some of the work I produced during that time come to light.