Today I finished the first full draft of my PhD thesis. 61,602 words of decent insight and occasional wisdom about the works of the author William Gibson. The first chapter still needs a fair bit of editing, and the conclusion needs a few tweaks, but for the most part it’s done. A friend of mine has kindly agreed to copy edit the whole thing for me (thanks Amelia, if you’re reading this!) but it’ll take me a couple of weeks to get it all polished enough to hand over to her.
One of the things that I need to change is the title of the piece. Originally I proposed a thesis called ‘The Gendering of Cyberspace: Gender, Identity, and Sexuality in the works of William Gibson’, but in the six years since I came up with that subject I’ve realised that in his books he doesn’t actually care that much about gender and sexuality, instead he’s got a lot of interest in identity and a couple of related topics. When you’re writing a PhD, you can change the title right up until the point where you hand it in, as long as it stays in a related field. Of course, changing this does mean that I’ll need to occasionally refocus a phrase here-and-there in the thesis, but I’m changing the title better reflect the thesis so the refocussing should be pretty painless.
I’m sticking with issues of identity, but I’ve gone down a slightly different path. I don’t want to say much more about the choice that I’ve made at the moment due to the remote (but just about possible) chance that an academic might pinch it before I’m examined. I’m considering making a chapter available on my site for anyone who’s interested when it’s done, but I will likely be trying to get the thesis published as a book so I wouldn’t want to give everything away!
Anyway, merry Christmas to me, I’ve given myself the thesis that I’ve been promising myself for many years.
Season’s best wishes to you all too. ‘Hope you have a great Christmas, those of you who celebrate it. I’ll probably be taking a little break from blogging for a few days, so I’ll see you on the other side. Ho ho ho, and to all a good night!