What I Think About When I Think About Haruki Murakami’s “What I Talk About When I Talk About Running”

First Pic of the Fall Semester

One of the strangest feelings academia produces is waking up, looking at a blank page, and beginning to write page one of two hundred. I’m not even sure how to describe it- intimidating?  flummoxing? disheveling? discombobulating? A lot of “dis-” words come to mind. I’m in my fifth and final year of my doctoral program, teaching and continuing my job as an editor for a student magazine, all while in the thick of dissertation writing. With the end of my program around the corner, I would love to take a day off to just sit with my feelings and ask myself, What do I want? Where do I see myself going? What contribution do I wish to make with the training I’ve received during my time at OSU? The problem is that every moment I can spare has now been allocated to the dissertation writing process. The whole process feels all-encompassing, like swimming in jell-o. I have no idea if I’ll ever make it out, or if I’m even doing the thing I’m supposed to do to get out. There are days when you are on an upswing, where the words flow out of you, sentences like strings of brilliance, like you were born to do this. But those periods do not last long, only to then face the dreaded blank page again. A good day is when writing happens. My biggest problem was getting there. Continue reading