So, the thesis is done, if not dusted. What do I do now?
The first thing to do is to earn a living. That's now sorted, at least for the next few months; I'm doing a bit more IT work and, more interestingly, some sessional tutoring for the Arts Faculty. I last did that in 2006, so it's useful to be able to burnish my teaching credentials. The two subjects I'm tutoring are called Total War in Europe: World War One and From Homer to Hollywood. I'm enjoying both very much so far. Total War in Europe is of course right up my alley: this week in tutes we discussed militarism before 1914, and next week we'll be looking at the July Crisis. It's hard to make that material uninteresting, but I'm the man for the job. From Homer to Hollywood is an interdisciplinary breadth subject (for those familiar with the terminology of the Melbourne Model) for first year students, which examines representations of war in a variety of poems, novels, plays, paintings and films. We've started off with the Iliad and The Song of Roland; later we'll get to do War and Peace, Guernica and the film Gallipoli, among many other things. It's a bit outside my comfort zone in terms of approach (more litcrit than historical) but I'm learning a lot and enjoying teaching the first years.
Then there's the career. It's not exactly a good time to be looking for academic jobs (when is it ever), but I'm going to give it a bash. I need to publish though, and if I can get, say, two papers in the pipeline this year, that will help with that. I've got plenty of ideas, but as yet little inclination to get stuck into writing again. That will have to change! There's also the thesis-to-book process to begin, assuming it isn't roundly rubbished by the examiners, of course.
Finally, there's blogging. I do intend to keep writing at Airminded, although I'm not really sure what I'll have to say -- the problem with a research blog is that when you're not doing research, you're probably not going to be blogging that much either! That is something I'll have to cope with though, as I've just been made a member of Cliopatria, in place of the now-defunct Revise and Dissent. It's an honour but one which I'll have to work at justifying.
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