I’ve just sent in an abstract for the Annual Postgraduate Conference in History and Classics. The conference is supposed to be a place where MA and first year PhD students can present their research in a friendly environment, so it will hopefully give me a chance to present a paper for the first time. I’m not sure if I’ll get accepted though as my paper probably won’t go into as much detail as those of people who have been studying the subject for longer than I have, and I’m not entirely happy with my abstract as it currently stands, but to be honest I won’t be that upset if my paper gets rejected because I know I’m more than capable of giving a presentation or writing an article anyway.
I’ve also got an email about Annual Meeting of Postgraduates in Ancient History, which is the big annual event for postgraduates in my field and is being held in Oxford this year. I’m thinking of writing a paper for that as well because, even though I probably stand very little chance of beating off the fierce competition, if I managed to get accepted it would be one hell of a string in my bow, especially if I end up applying for a PhD. The deadline for abstracts is the 31st of January though, so I still have plenty of time to think about it.
Still on the topic of papers, it turns out that there’s a competition to win a scholarship for the Graduate Diploma in Law at the BPP law centre in Manchester, starting in September 2007. To be in with a chance, I have to write a 2000 word essay on the subject: ‘Freedom of Speech does not extend to criticising religions.’ Discuss. It’s a reasonably interesting topic, so I think I’ll give this a go as it doesn’t have to be finished until January which means I can write it over Christmas. Apparently I can claim back the cost of my train ticket to the judging event, so the whole thing won’t cost me anything other than a few hours of my time to actually write the essay. Given that the fees for the GDL are over five thousand pounds, it sounds like a reasonable investment to me, and if I don’t win then I haven’t really lost anything.
Hopping over to the wonderful world of Latin and things are going well—I’m actually getting to grips with the different cases much more than I was before and I can translate the majority of the sample texts without having to look at the dictionary (or rather I usually have a guess which turns out to be right when I double-check). Apparently we don’t have an exam in January either, which will relieve some of the stress over Christmas and let me concentrate a bit more on other things instead, such as all these papers I have to write!
Work wise, I’ll hopefully be getting a short-term three month contract to work at the University for ten hours a week doing some Perl programming. So far it sounds fairly interesting and working for a large organisation like the University always looks good on a CV, although according to the woman in charge of the work I’ll be doing my CV is already “very impressive”, which is always good to hear. 🙂
Other stuff: took the aikido warmup on Saturday which was fun (though it’s a lot harder than it looks when you’re actually up there), might get some more freelance work coming in from a client that I went to see this week and am now starting to panic about the MFoE AGM and whether it will all go to plan.