The Academia I Almost Wrote:
Way back in the day, I was in grad school. Then I ran screaming out of the ivory tower for a host of reasons, not the least of which was I was (a) not brain-old enough to get a handle on what needed to be done in grad school and (b) I wanted to study contemporary literature (read: romances) and went to a school that had a marked specialty in dead white Victorian men (I know, what university doesn't?).
I passed my language comps and was AB-T. All But Thesis. Lame, I know. I'm like an Almost-MA. AMA.
But there are a few unfinished academic projects I wish I had the time and the letters after my name to properly complete.
First: my thesis. I was way into composition (until I saw the stacks of essays to grade stretching way into my future like an unending road paved with 8.5 by 11 paper) and was happily immersed in rhetoric and comp studies. My thesis would have been a lot of fun. Drawing from my experience teaching students with varying types of learning disabilities, I posited that instant messenger and email, and now Twitter, txt msgs, and the like, allow students with severe writing blocks the ability to transcribe their thoughts into fluid text because typing != writing, and screen text, since it is dynamic and fluid, did not equal writing to their eyes, and their brains. Part study, part explanation of teaching techniques, and part "OMG did you read that book by Ong - that man would have had the BEST Twitters," I planned to keep up with the topic through my MA thesis and into my PhD work. I was and am convinced that the way technology redefines and shakes up concepts of gender, society, and literacy forces those of us who type faster than we hand write, and possibly faster than we speak, to examine how technology changes what and how we write - and how new technology can be used to teach writing and formal essay structure (the foundation of college composition, hey hey hey) to students for whom writing is a complete and nearly impossible challenge.
Did I mention I think Ong rocked like a vandal in a rocking chair? Dude. Love Ong. And this graphic novel I have of Derrida's "Of Grammatology."
Second: Application of major feminist theories and concepts on romance novels: a romance novel guide to fem lit crit (and queer lit crit, and lit crit, and lit crit II: Electric Bugaloo). I had this vision of taking major concepts in feminist literary criticism (the Sedgwick triangle, etc) and finding examples within romance novels as illustrative and subversive manifestations of the examined theory, or in some cases, examples that provide the undermining of that theory.
Then I ran screaming out of academia and started working for The Man, founded a blog, and the rest is recent history. Maybe someday I'll get an honorary PhD. In Awesomeness.