Uncategorized | February 05, 2004

This semester promises to be interesting. My only non-literature class is Spanish, which I have five days a week. The rest of the time I’ve kept busy with reading from my Modern Lit class, 19th Century American Lit class, and fiction submissions for The Review. Reading for each of these simultaneously has been odd to say the least. In my Modern Lit class, we’ve read Freud’s Civilization and Its Discontents and are currently reading Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf; they are a stark contrast to the transcendental tangents of Emerson and Thoreau. The result has been constant shifting of gears between Freud telling me god is a scapegoat invented by man, and Emerson saying that every animal function reflects the Ten Commandments.

As you can imagine, the diversity of these works has been a burden, stretching my mind a little too thin, as the cliché goes. However, the reading I have looked forward to is the stack of manuscripts I read each week. In each bundle, there is a variety of voices and topics, none of which try to hammer me with any ideas about God, or anything else for that matter. Although I don’t like every manuscript I read, it’s still exciting to go through them, picking apart their strengths and weaknesses, trying to find those few manuscripts that stand out among the multitude we receive each month.

What worries me about this mixture is that I tend to emulate, to some degree, whatever I’m reading at the time. I can only hope that I don’t get a run of manuscripts with nature or religious themes, or the dried up creek near my dorm may become a metaphor for the troubles of human kind and rear its ugly head in everything I write for the rest of the semester.