As much work as I’ve put into this paper, as many books and articles as I’ve read in the researching, as much as I feel like I’m bordering on some pretty cool (and hopefully novel) insights…
…I can’t help but feel that I’m going to get a terrible grade on it.
It doesn’t help that this professor has never returned any of our papers–nor given them individual grades–so I have absolutely zero clue how my writing style fits his grading style.
I’ve never been this in the dark on my potential grade in a class before. We’re graded on three things: class participation, weekly papers, and the final paper. So I usually did a pretty good job participating in class and never missed a class, so I should get full marks there. But I have no idea where I stand on the weekly papers, or what he’ll think of the final one.
So I could be looking at an A or…I don’t know, what’s 33% come to? C-? D? It’s so totally up in the air that it’s terrifying. Because if I get a crappy grade in this class, I may as well kiss my graduate career goodbye.
But I don’t know what I’ll do if that happens.
It also doesn’t help that we were told 10-15 pages for the paper, or one time he told me 15-20. My current draft (draft 2) is 27, single spaced. Admittedly, every page has a large number of footnotes–a few are half footnotes, in fact–so all that text won’t be affected when I double space it, so it’s not like the number of pages will double, but even so! And worse still, I feel like there’s already a ton of material that I left out that I really shouldn’t have. So I can’t really cut it back. Though admittedly, I’ve kind of written two and a half papers rather than one, so maybe that’s okay. (He did say there wasn’t really a maximum on number of pages, but I don’t know if he was expecting me to turn up with 40 or so pages. Plus twenty pages of illustrations. And the bibliography.)
The only plus side is that if everything goes well, then this is like half of the first draft of my Master’s Thesis. Well, in outline. There’s a lot more research I’d need to do even on the parts I’ve already written before it would be at thesis level.
I guess if I do supremely crappy in this class, I’ll fumble along in the graduate program a while longer so I can still use the school’s library to do research and write up what would have been my thesis as a book instead. Which I’d have to self-publish, of course, but….sigh.
Life is too depressing for words.