Thesis thoughts

Okay, so the thesis is done. And, to take a break from writing, I think I’ll write. In fact, I’ll write about writing. That makes sense in the recursive world of recursiveness.

I think my laptop is on its last leg. Sometimes, it can’t redraw the screen properly and I get a dark line across the app I’m working with. The Huff Post and the WaPo cause it to crash when I’m using Safari, so I switched to Firefox. Also, it is held together with packing tape. It no longer looks like this:

Look at me!

Actually, it kind of looks like that, but with scratches and packing tape. But, it will last until I graduate.

But I digress, back to the thesis. It’s a little rough in patches. Some transitions between paragraphs need a little work. I finished it with the help of my family, who ate pizza for a whole month without complaining. But they had clean clothes to wear every day, so there’s really nothing to complain about. I finished it without eating too many of these:

Good snacks make writing easier

Or drinking too much of this:

Coffee IV

And last night, I had one of these to celebrate:

I may have had more than one!

So yay. I’m done.

But, I’m not done. Not even close. I’ve said what I have to say, but the whole document needs a heavy edit.

I want to add more guts to my content analysis. I left out half the data because it wasn’t great data. I analyzed an executive summary separate from the body of the text, and the summary has great stuff in it. The body, not so much. I think the words are just so numerous and the language so limited that it doesn’t really say much. Am I losing you? Sorry.

One of the most amazing things I’ve ever read was Carolyn Miller’s A Humanistic Rationale for Technical Writing. Like all her work, it’s just so well argued. She leads you though her thought process in such an elegant way. But, it’s not effortless. She really makes you think as you make transitions in your head. So, when you’re done reading what she wrote, you feel smarter. I do try to emulate her style, but I’m kind of crappy at it. She is so well read and has so much more material to draw upon. I just don’t have that kind of background.

So, Miller’s well-argued essay is the style of writing I was going for.

When I was working in software, I had a great manager who always urged us to get something out there. Just connect all the dots, he used to say. His plan was always to get something out there with minimal functionality as soon as possible. Get the code to talk to the data to talk to the user. Find out where everything is going to live, and turn it on. Connect all the dots. Then, we’ll add functionality.

I wrote about 15,000 words. I connected all the dots. Now, I need to add functionality.

References:

Miller, C. R. (1979). A Humanistic Rationale for Technical Writing. College English , 40 (6).

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