As I look at the calendar and realize that I will be heading to Asheville for my summer school classes in 8 days (where has the time gone?!), I am feeling anxious, expectant, and overwhelmed. I have read most of the books for one course - and even taken some preliminary notes. The course is entitled "Rewriting a Life" and while I know the books will be discussed, I am thinking the focus will be on writing, revising and editing our own works. I am most concerned about this class, as I have never had a formal writing class - nor have I had my writing critiqued - since I was a senior in high school. I hope my fragile ego can take it.
The 2nd class I am taking is a pedagogical Shakespeare class. I have read all 4 plays - most of them more than once. I have a general idea of the characters, the plot, and the major themes. However, we were required to purchase the Norton critical editions for 3 of the 4 plays. Are you familiar with Norton? I would say that the actual play is about 20% of the book, and the remaining 80% of the books' volume focuses on critical commentary. I have no idea whether we are supposed to read all commentary - or if the instructor will assign only certain essays. I do not think it is feasible for me to read all commentary ahead of time - and retain any of it. However, I am feeling VERY nervous that I will not be adequately prepared for this course. I will try to find some happy medium this coming week.
I must focus my attention on these two courses for the next 6 weeks. I am actually looking forward to this intense study (as one fellow Bread Loaf student remarked, it is like summer camp for English teachers) - BUT I will have very little time to read much of anything else.
That brings me to my feelings of guilt and need to apologize. I tried so very hard to curb my excitement at BEA -- but since it was my first event I am afraid that it was quite easy to get caught up in the spontaneity of the crowd. You have read my post of the authors I met and books I brought home. While I would love to do nothing more than begin reading and reviewing these newly acquired masterpieces -- I simply cannot. I now feel as though I should not have brought them home, as the review will not be posted in a timely fashion. I feel as though I have taken a book that could have/should have belonged to someone else - and I feel as though I will be viewed as an irresponsible blogger by those in the industry that I truly respect. I hope that the publishing companies - and the publicists - can forgive my faux pas of being an overzealous newbie, realize that I have definitely learned from my mistake, and know that I will organize my life in August where I will only accept books that I know I can review in a timely manner.
My life these next 6-7 weeks will have different priorities. I still plan to post to my blog, but it will probably be only a couple of times a week, and the posts will center on class discussions of the books and plays that I am reading for school. This may or may not appeal to my readers, and I will apologize in advance if these posts are not of interest to you. I promise that I will be back to "normal" come August 1 - and I plan to devote 2 days a week to reading books for blog reviews.
All work and no play is never good, however, so I still plan to spend an hour or so a day keeping up with your blogs and making comments. I want to stay connected, even though I will be somewhat distant. I may even have time for an occasional tweet. I hope my lack of community involvement does not ostracize me from the community. I have come to appreciate each and every one of you and I hope to stay connected in some small way.