Jul. 8th, 2005 05:09 pm
liv: ribbon diagram of a p53 monomer (p53)
So I have received a letter to the following effect:
Dear Dr [livredor]

I am very pleased to let you know that the Senatus Academicus has considered the report of the Examining Committee on your Thesis and decided to grand you the degree of PhD.

Yours sincerely &c
I'm going to Dundee to graduate at the beginning of next week. The ceremony is very much along the same lines as the faux-mediaevalism of the notification letter, complete with entirely anachronistic Latin, but hey, it should be fun. Getting there is going to be interesting, I suspect; I have booked train journeys that avoid London, but it might be awkward all the same.
Less dramatically, have book reviews of:
-David Baddiel: The secret purposes
-Joanna Trollope: A passionate man


Apr. 8th, 2005 01:06 pm
liv: ribbon diagram of a p53 monomer (p53)
My thesis is submitted. And before the deadline, even if only by a few hours. Thank you all so, so, so much for all the support and encouragement that's kept me going through this.

I will confess I did whoop out loud after I handed the third copy to the convener just now. I'm freeeeeeeeeee! I have stuff that needs doing but nothing with an urgent deadline. So I'm planning to spend the next few days hanging out with friends (including S&S who have also just submitted, go them!) and enjoying the spring sunshine and not thinking about my thesis. Yay!

Also, I have a [ profile] pseudomonas, who is tired and jet-lagged and not in the best of health, but it's good to see him! (I had managed to completely forget, with all the thesis panic, that he was coming, so I feel a little sheepish.) Anyway, he's back at the flat so I shall just go and join him and feed him some lunch.

May not be in touch all that much this weekend as I'm wanting to pay attention to my guest, especially as I abandoned him rather a lot when he was here a couple of weeks ago. But I'm going to have a mammoth correspondence and LJ catchup session next week.

I can't stop grinning.
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
So. It's a little before half past nine at night. I've worked through pretty much solidly from 5 this morning. (I don't do all-nighters, not even when pretty much everything is in the balance; I know from experience I get more done by sleeping for 6 hours and then working for 2, than trying to bash through for 8.)

Good things:
  • The thesis is really done except for finalizing the pagination, which I can't face at the moment.
  • I ran into the wife of my convener (who is herself the convener for the other two PhD students, S&S), and she says the Friday deadline is not as absolute as I thought it was when I was panicking. As long as the appropriate people get their copies sometime next week, it's all fine. There's no reason on earth this won't happen.
  • Apparently the way forward with preliminary copies is to print stuff out on lab computers, and take a big wodge of paper to the print shop who will bind it either immediately or the next day. This saves me a lot of headaches.
  • I'm not dead. I'm not gonna fail unless the thesis is really sub-par, which in all honesty I don't think it is.
Bad things:
  • The thesis is still not at the printers.
  • I've been awake for 19 hours and counting and not eaten for 9. My hands are killing me and I'm generally a wreck. There aren't enough hours between now and tomorrow to recover from what I've done to myself.
  • Microsoft Office sucks even more than I already realized it did. I won't bore you with the details of how many ways this stupid bloody program has messed me around today and made a long and painful process vastly worse.
  • Partly related to the above, I suspect printing out the figures is going to be more than a matter of just clicking 'print'.
The last section of my acknowledgements says:
The crowd at the Livre d’Or for keeping me sane.
MF, unanima mea soror
Thank you so much for all the comfort and advice and rooting for me, in the past couple of days especially but really ever since I joined LJ. (The slightly cryptic reference to my LJ friendslist is because I don't want the examiners to find this journal with creative googling. But I mean you guys.)


Apr. 5th, 2005 07:16 pm
liv: cartoon of me with long plait, teapot and purple outfit (Default)
I feel a bit embarrassed about panicking to quite the extent I did earlier. Still scared but no longer convinced I'm going to fail and ruin my life. Thank you for all your supportive comments and helpful advice. I'm tempted to go and reply to them all but that would blatantly be displacement.

progress report, mainly to motivate myself )

I only need to soft bind for this stage. It may be that I can actually get away with printing everything out myself (from work, obviously) and taking a big thick pile of paper to the printer and asking them to fix it in a cover. This could potentially save time. Or maybe, with modern technology and all, I can just give the printer a CD, go out for a celebratory icecream and come back in a couple of hours?

Now I need food. Love you all. (Oh, and the workmen have gone away. They have left a horrible mess, but this is a non-urgent problem.)


Apr. 5th, 2005 12:17 pm
liv: ribbon diagram of a p53 monomer (p53)
I have to get my thesis to the examiners by Friday at the very latest. It's basically finished, bar fiddly little things. But the fiddly little things are taking me ages. I really wanted to get it to the printers today, and it's not looking realistic. Tomorrow, maybe, but tomorrow is cutting it damn fine to get it printed and conveyed to the appropriate people by Friday.

On top of this, some workmen are rebuilding the doorway of the block of flats where I life. Hence, there is loud drilling and hammering going on just the other side of the wall. It's deeply distracting, and it's causing occasional brief powercuts such that I lose data. Yes, I am saving regularly but at this stage losing even 10 minutes' work repeatedly is adding up.

If you can think of any realistic reason I'm not actually going to fail this degree, please suggest it. (The fact that people like me and offer me hugs and that I'm generally clever are all nice things, but they don't count here.)
Addendum 2pm: The workmen have knocked a hole through my wall. They are terribly apologetic about it, but they would really quite like me to be around today and tomorrow to let them in to fix it. And I need to tidy up the study where all my papers are currently laid out so they can get at the hole. Dot dot dot.


Mar. 22nd, 2005 06:16 pm
liv: ribbon diagram of a p53 monomer (p53)
I have deadlines hanging over me like the Sword of Damocles, or Mt Sinai, to mix mythologies shamefully.

I had a very brief consultation with the Überboss just now. He was encouraging but vague; most of the specific advice he gave me involved how to handle the viva. I'm not scared about the viva, partly because it's six weeks away and partly because I'm fairly confident that an oral exam will show me to my best advantage. I'm scared about finishing this thesis in the space of the next few days. What I gave to Überboss D was done enough to give him an idea of what the thesis is, but I know that the final step from almost done to done always takes longer than you expect.

I have to do this stupid bloody experiment that I don't want to do at this stage in the proceedings, and that I have good reason to believe is not going to work. I'm going to have to work through purim; I don't particularly care about the festival itself but I do care about missing joining in with community activities and not spending the time with [ profile] pseudomonas I was hoping to. But the prospect of getting to see [ profile] pseudomonas is still cheering.

Apologies to anyone I should be communicating with right now. At this stage, I don't particularly want cheering up, I need to be left alone to fight through this last round. If you do want to send me supportive messages, please do it in a way that doesn't require a real-time reply. Main point is, I'm still here, I still love all the people I love, and I'm hoping to reemerge sometime towards the end of next week.


Feb. 23rd, 2005 10:41 pm
liv: ribbon diagram of a p53 monomer (p53)
Today I gave a talk to my department (about 40 people whom I know more or less well). I summarized the main thread of my PhD work, and it went really well. People asked good questions and were complimentary about the presentation, and I'm generally really happy about it. It's not news to me that I'm good at public speaking, but I'm proud of today, and that's making me feel good about my thesis work in general. Yay.

(Boss S said that if it were up to her, on the basis of that talk I should be a doctor already. Which is rather sweet.)

And it snowed heavily this morning and continued on and off throughout the day, so by the time I got home Dundee was looking exceptionally pretty in the twilight. I decided to skive off my thesis briefly and went out with my camera to take photos.

snoooow! )
liv: A woman with a long plait drinks a cup of tea (teapot)
I was sitting quietly working on my thesis just now, with a randomized playlist providing background noise. For absolutely no reason, the Renaud song Mistral gagnant made me cry. I'm not upset tearful, I don't think, it's more like a sudden sense of how much certain people mean to me.

I don't understand this at all; I have absolutely no associations with the song and it's not especially lovely, kind of sentimental but not the sort of thing I normally find deeply moving. And it's not a time of the month when I should be randomly tearful about nothing, and no emotionally disturbing things have happened to me recently.
Te raconter enfin qu'il faut aimer la vie / Et l'aimer même si le temps est assassin...
(Lemme tell you, you gotta love life in the end, you gotta love it even when time comes to murder it.)
liv: ribbon diagram of a p53 monomer (p53)
Today I formally committed myself, with a signature, no less, to a viva date: 9th May. I am quite incapable of imagining that my thesis will be done and printed and bound a month before that, but I guess it'll have to be.


Miscellaneous. Eclectic. Random. Perhaps markedly literate, or at least suffering from the compulsion to read any text that presents itself, including cereal boxes.

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