Stephanie Burgis
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Bonfire Night was fun for the first few hours, but by ten o'clock, when great billowing clouds of smelly black smoke were filling the air for our last walk of the night, we were sick of it. By eleven o'clock, when we were lying in bed trying to go to sleep and the explosions were still going full throttle all around our house, we were beyond sick of it.

It's a good thing we've got another year before it comes again.


I've made the dangerous discovery that there's a discounted Starbucks cafe on campus. Very, very difficult to resist. I met some fourth-year PhD research students there on Tuesday, and had a wonderful time--it was incredibly reassuring to hear that all of them had felt discouraged, overwhelmed and ready to give up during their own second years. So there really is light ahead....

In the meantime, I'm struggling to find funding for a necessary research trip back to Vienna next year and for the Oxford conference this January. (Prestige: high. Expense: also high.) Next week I have to write a check for 167 for conference registration/accommodation, and it is going to hurt. With luck, I'll be able to find some helpful organization to reimburse me some of the money in January or February.

And in even more important news, I've plotted out Chapter Twenty of my novel and written the first page. Woohoo! Only eleven-and-a-half more chapters to go! I'm chugging.

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