It’s been a while, hasn’t it? I was trawling through all my old accounts and noticed the footfall for the Pimpernel had been quite heavy of late, so I thought I would pop in and say, HI! Nice to see you and thanks for dropping by.

Life has changed now I am now Dr. Pimpernel and I have the elusive Ph.D. in the bag … official and everything and OH! my word, life is somewhat exceeding expectations and undermining them, simultaneously!

Graduation was a wonderful day full of love and laughter and celebration and almost made the hard work and anxiety worth it … almost. In the intervening two years … TWO YEARS! ┬átempus fugit indeed! … I have once more been hospitalised for major surgery, with another surgery imminent … gynaecologically speaking, if I was a horse they would have shot me! But here I am, still ploughing on, still buying my body weight in books, half of which I will never get a chance to read!

And, in other news: I am a lecturer. Albeit at a small local FE/HE college, but never the less I am doing it! Sharing my love of the written word!

All in all the Ph.D. journey began by accident. My intention on embarking upon an undergraduate degree was to enable a career in teaching. Fortunate enough to secure funding and foolish enough to think that a Ph.D. meant something, I followed the dream and created a monster. I fell hook, line and sinker into the academic bubble and nurtured dreams of a promising future, researching long forgotten women writers, publishing fascinating books and being hailed as the next F.R. Leavis.

Alas, a need to work and earn money has overridden my desire for academic acclaim, hence the ┬álecturing post at a local FE/HE college. Mainly my job entails teaching communication (that’s English grammar to those of us old enough to remember o’levels) but I do get to teach literature as well, and this is the part that sustains me. The job is rewarding in so any ways, but it is equally as time-consuming and finding the right balance between my economic and creative selves is proving a challenge!

IN the two years since I graduate, I’ve written very little, fallen into slovenly academic habits and allowed myself to drift into the day-to-day humdrum of earning a crust …


I am hopeful that a re-awakening of my academic vigour is imminent and with the reviatlisation of this blog – or possiby a reincarnation of the Pimpernel into something more ‘grown-up’ ( or groan-up, which seems more apt! Though it looks like that domain name is already spoken for!) – I can hopefully overcome the debilitating ‘writer’s block’.

There’s a book proposal on my desk that is waiting to be put together, there’s peer-reviewing in my inbox, waiting to be read and there’s two weeks without students to reinvent my blogging self. The marking, can wait!

I invite you to submit suggestions for my new blogging personna … literary allusions wanted: apply within.



2 thoughts on “The Post-PhD Life

  1. I missed the last post (I’m not really blogging anymore and don’t frequently check my blogroll), but I happened to see this one.

    Congratulations on finishing the PhD! I, myself, hope to submit late September or early October, and it’s very difficult to imagine how I can possibly do it. But it must be done at some point, right?

    Well, again, congratulations! And congrats on the teaching post even if, perhaps, it’s not your dream job. I, myself, teach at a two-year, open-admission college in California, so I know the drill. But I, too, get to teach the occasional literature class, and I even kind of enjoy my composition/argument classes (despite the loads of grading), so it’s okay.


    1. HI,
      I am in the same boat re blogging and reading.
      Yes it can be done – I am living proof! I really never thought I’d get there but I did and you will too – you do get a final surge of adrenalin to just get it done!
      It never reach perfection and probably could still use revision, but there comes a point when you just have to bite that bullet and get it in. Passing is a euphoric moment. I milked it for all it was worth and had a ball! And now I get to be called Dr! I am proud of what I have achieved and you will hopefully get that post-PhD feeling very, very soon!
      Good luck and thanks for dropping in and saying hi! Gail x

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