Finals Week Update

Well, it’s not over yet. In fact, not even close. I’m giving myself 5 more minutes to write this, and then, it’s back to writing one of my papers.

Things this semester have been a bit more crammed than my past couple, mostly because one of my professors decided not to use the time allotted to him for a “final” next week. A lot of English professors do this in order to have one more class discussion. Rarely are there actual finals. The nice part, is this is usually when the paper is due. Normal “classes” end, and then we have one more week to turn in papers.

Nope, not this year. Both of my professors wanted our papers done and turned in before Finals Week. I had a 16 page Melville paper due yesterday (which the professor graciously gave a 3 day extension on at 11pm the night before!), and a 14-16 page Dante paper due today by midnight (no extension given…yet…I’d ask for one if things get too hairy, but I already got one for the short midterm paper we had due, since I was feeling baby sick at the time:).

And, I actually do have a Final in my Dante class- 1 part objective, 1 part essay. He is going to email us the essay question sometime this evening, and says that we have 2 hours to prepare/outline what we will say. We can bring whatever we write to Monday’s class with us.

Sounds merciful, but he says it’s because he wants a higher caliber of essay as the finished result. Most in-class essays, he said, are pretty devoid of any real thought, mainly because of the pressure. They end up becoming regurgitations of what’s already been talked about all semester.

Part 1 of the Final is the Objective Section, where he will pick random quotes from throughout the entire Comedy. “All” we have to do is name who is speaking. I am so bad at this sort of thing, it’s really embarrassing.

Good news: Because I thought my Melville paper was due yesterday instead of Monday, I have the majority of it done. I am writing about Coleridge’s impact on Melville, briefly touching on the obvious example (Rime of the Ancient Mariner in Moby Dick), but then spending the majority of my time on Pierre, a more disturbing novel (if you didn’t think that was possible, it is. A guy abandons his mother and fiancee to run away with his long-lost half sister. They fall in love, and then kill themselves). I did a class presentation on this half of my paper last night, which is hilarious considering it is the only part I still haven’t written. But I thought it went pretty well.

Alright, back to the grindstone! You don’t need to feel sorry for me, as I really enjoy this kind of essay writing, but it is a lot to do. I keep viewing it as a “tough workout” that you know you can handle if you keep breathing…keep breathing…

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