Some of you may have enjoyed a long summer holiday on various exotic beaches around the world, others may have gone skiing or become an au pair, gone inter-railing, found yourself, worked in an African village, done work experience or something equally as engaging. A lot of you will have forgotten university at any rate, but for me, the poor, overlooked English Literature student, it seems I definitely have taken my work home- and I’m drowning in pages and pages of classic literature in preparation for next year.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining much, but I do wish I could just think about nothing on said beach instead of examining the Marxist implications of some Victorian realism work as some downtime. I haven’t even had chance to read this summer’s best seller Fifty Shades of Grey (not that I’ve read the most glowing reviews) because my reading list for next year is astronomical, I haven’t even managed to read the entire reading list yet, never mind attempt the books it’s listed. (note: Literature students sometimes possess the flair for the dramatic- not that I’m one of them)
Although the list is expansive, covering eras spanning from the Victorian populist fiction to literature that emerged from colonialism, I can’t entirely lie and say that it’s a complete misery. I’ve discovered some really good books and finally understood what some of the fuss about for others. I’ve also had the chance to reread classics that I haven’t had chance to enjoy since my childhood days. Ah those were the days, reading was a pastime and hobby and you had to literally drag me away from a book, nowadays, it can sometimes feel like work.
This summer, I’m being prepared. After the horror of last October when the shock of second year’s work load literally descended on me like a tonne of bricks, I decided to get ahead and do a lot of the more time consuming aspect of my course in the long summer months since I didn’t have anything exciting planned. Not only will this take a big weight off next year, but it will also give me a lot of time to concentrate on the dreaded d word- my dissertation.
So far, it’s going well I’ve pretty much read everything for one of my modules and only have three more to go. Not only have I had chance to read these books properly, but I have been proactive in my reading and complied files detailing important information about the authors, era, context and good quotes for each text which hopefully will come in handy for my essays or exams. How’s that for swotting up?
It seems I really have turned a new page (ahem) this holiday. I’ve started a new chapter in my revision habits and I’ve resolutely decided to get in my tutors good books next term. Ok- that’s enough of the book puns- but seriously, getting ahead is a good idea and it’ll also mean there will be a lot more time for extra-curricular activities like partying if you know that reading for your seminar at 9 am has already been done.
So hit the books hard, or even just a little bit this summer and I’m sure you’ll realise this one’s one of the oldest tricks in the books for those who stay ahead!
Sorry I couldn’t resist a couple more!