Meredith here. You may have noticed that we’ve got company here on the SGS blog. Yazan Qasrawi will be lending his voice from time to time, which will add all kinds of interesting insight – particularly about being in international student. I’ll keep blathering on the way I do about things, but I’ll try to be more clear when it’s me writing… so that you can all keep Yazan and I apart!
Well, it’s been quite a week! I managed to get my presentation paper written. As I’ve mentioned, I’ve never been to a conference before — so the fact that I am off to Sarah Lawrence College, in Yonkers, New York (evidently, it’s about a 1/2 hour north of Manhattan) is feeling like something of a big deal! eek!
To get me ready, my supervisor suggested I do a practice-read of the paper — which I did, at her house last night. I presented to her, as well as to a couple of friends who are both pursuing their PhDs (and are well-versed in all things conference). I was a little nervous going in because (as one friend suggested) reading a paper to friends can sometimes be more nerve-wracking than reading it to a big room full of strangers!
Still: I think it went pretty well (maybe the wine helped?). They were generally enthusiastic about what I had to say and made some really good suggestions and comments that I incorporated into the text this morning. In fact, I would totally suggest the pre-conference-practice-read to anyone else feeling nervous about delivering a paper. I have to say, I’m feeling a lot more prepared (and I daresay, kind of excited) about delivering it now. I already have a sense of the places where people will (hopefully!) laugh and the kinds of questions that people might ask after I’m done. Feels ok.
I’m driving down to Yonkers with a friend (she’s coming to the conference too – though I’m the only Queen’s person presenting). We’re leaving in the morning with enough time to squeeze in the seven-hour drive before the opening events tomorrow evening. I’m part of a panel that happens in the last time-slot on Saturday. Hopefully it all goes well (I’ll update you here on Monday or Tuesday).
We’ll be capping off the trip with a day in Manhanttan, should anyone have any ideas of brilliantly fun things we shouldn’t neglect to see!