Over the course of the semester, I will be revising one of my papers for publication. I am at once nervous and excited about the class. On the one hand, I am also studying for exams, taking two other classes, and working with our graduate student organization. On the other hand, I will get an opportunity to revisit a paper that I have been working on for the past year that I think has a lot of promise.
After rereading my paper (and doing some initial cuts), it is about one-third the length it will need to be before it can be published. Perhaps even one-quarter the length. I have signalled out sections that will be delegated to footnotes and marked areas of improvement. The paper is a mess, to say the least.
But even though on the surface it looks like an academic graveyard, I am still proud of it. It is probably the best thing I have ever written (or at least the best idea I’ve ever had). I didn’t know if I would feel this way when I finished the proto-draft of it this past May. At that point, I was so sick of looking at it and thinking about the project that I wanted to rip it in half and never see it again. I’m glad that I didn’t do that. A summer of forgetting about it makes me appreciate the work that has gone into it thus far. And the research and revision timeline I completed for class makes me appreciate the work that is still to be done.