Gearing up

With apologies to the world for adding yet another blog to the information traffic jam, I’m launching a short-term work-related blog for the month of December. There will be no knitting, politics, religion, or family shenanigans here. My purpose is to have a place to report my progress on completing my book manuscript by 31 December 2010. I’ll be reporting each day of December, regardless of whether I have made progress or not.

The book has the working title Ibsen’s Peer Gynt and the Production of Meaning. It consists of an introduction ([11 pages] and an as-yet merely hypothetical conclusion) and the following five chapters:

  1. The Philosophical Ambivalence of Peer Gynt [27 pages]
  2. (De)Constructing a “National Drama”: From Peer Gynt (1867) to Peer Gynt (1876) [30 pages]
  3. Rewriting Peer Gynt: Contemporary Norwegian Fiction [18 pages]
  4. Emplacing Peer Gynt, Peer Gynt, and Per Gynt [24 pages]
  5. Mediating Peer Gynt: Contemporary Norwegian Film [31 pages]
I started the project in September. At that point I gathered together all the earlier PG material I had and it came in at about 75 pages. My goal is a minimum of 170 pages, which works out to ten pages each for the introduction and conclusion, and thirty pages for each chapter. I’ve been tracking progress since and I had the following three milestone tallies:
  • 15 September: 82 pages
  • 15 October: 110 pages
  • 15 November: 141 pages
That means that I now have less than thirty pages to go to meet my minimum, though I really hope to surpass that.
Last week I made a list of the specific sections that need to be added throughout:
  • 3-page section on Hegel to chapter 1 (it ended up just being a paragraph)
  • 2-page section on Paul Botten-Hansen’s Huldrebrylluppet to chapter 2 (it ended up just being a paragraph)
  • 4-page section on postmodern parody/revisionist fiction/parallel narrative/adaptation to chapter 3
  • contact colleagues about theory on adaptation of adult literature for children for chapter 3
  • 4-page section on Nærum’s Peer! (2009) to chapter 3
  • 2-pages of expansion of existing analysis spread throughout chapter 3?
  • 2-page section on Årets Peer Gynt to chapter 4 (nope, added something different instead)
  • 3-page section on theory to chapter 4
  • 1-page section on the Maihaugen staging of Paul Botten-Hansen’s St. Hansnats Eventyr (featuring Peer Gynt) to chapter 4 (nope, just a brief reference)
  • 2-page section on Baardson’s 2006 Giza production to chapter 5
  • reorganize chapter 5 a bit to group the two television broadcasts together as a separate category from the other film versions (nope, ditched this idea)
  • contact director of documentary film to interview her about the creative sequences
  • 10-page conclusion (a colleague advises me to collect all the preliminary conclusions from each of the chapters and synthesize them) (so far only five pages)
I’ll cross them off of this master list as I get them done. Broken down like that each individual section appears do-able. The problem is just that each individual point on that list actually requires a great deal of thought, research, and contextualization. I’m on particularly shaky ground with the proposed theoretical sections, since I haven’t really been all that theoretically stringent up to this point. I’ve just been banging out the material as fast as I can to get it down on paper before I forget the point I wanted to make.
Okay. Here goes nothing!

2 responses to “Gearing up

  1. >Ambitious. My only goal is to survive teaching the month of Dec. I do think this would work better if you had an advent calendar with presents you can open after each goal is accomplished. Or maybe that's just me? I like bribes.

  2. >Well, I'm nothing if not ambitious! I would add "desperate for a permanent job" to the mix too, though.

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