My Goals for the Summer

FlowersTo welcome the lovely new readers we’ve been getting, I decided to update y’all on my busy, busy summer. As many of you might remember, I previously complained that my life was over…twice. Of course, it wasn’t true and I got through my junior year just fine. Looking back, though, it was definitely one of the hardest years ever. I had to constantly struggle with the crushing possibility that I simply wasn’t good enough to become a writer. When I finally got The Call from my agent, it alleviated a lot of my self-doubt. Unfortunately, the subsequent rejection of my first novel by publishers didn’t help. I quickly shook off my disappointment and dove into book #2, which is currently with my agent and waiting to be submitted next week. Did you hear that, guys? Next week! I could be in negotiations for a book deal within days. Scary and exciting thought.

Anyway, I’m definitely not as busy as I was during the school year, but I have managed to take on quite a load this summer. I don’t know if I’ll manage to accomplish everything. I am, however, the type of person who likes to set goals, so I’m going to aim high. Looking back at my New Year’s Resolutions for this year (already halfway through, gasp!), I missed getting a 4.0 last semester by one A-. But I did keep up my relationship with my siblings, land an agent, blog weekly, and maintain my French. Hitting the gym weekly, though? Well…

Now, I’m going to list the goals I’ve set for this summer and you guys will have to keep me accountable!

Summer 2013 To-Do List

  1. Finish majority of Romance Languages thesis. For my honors thesis, I am doing a phonetic comparison of Spanish, French, and Catalan vowels. So far, I have been getting familiar with their vowel systems. I just finished designing the speaking task with which I will use to record subjects. After that, I will begin acoustic analysis. I would like to finish collecting all the data by fall. 
  2. Get a good start on International Studies thesis. For my other thesis, I plan to study the representation of women during the Chinese Cultural Revolution through the medium of art. This is a period of history that fascinates me, and I’m always drawn to gender studies. I will spend the summer doing preliminary research (i.e. reading tons of books). By the end of it, I hope to have a clearer grasp of my topic. 
  3. Polish and submit Fulbright Application. I am planning to take a year off from school after I graduate to do the Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship program. I’m applying to Morocco because I wanted to do something different after France, continue to practice my French, and learn a new language. Morocco is perfect because its Islamic/North African culture is amazing, many Moroccans speak French, and the majority use Darija, or Moroccan Arabic.
  4. Teach myself Arabic. To make my Fulbright application more competitive and to gain some basic survival skills in preparation for Morocco, I’m teaching myself Arabic. This will certainly be no easy feat, but I have a hoard of textbooks on the way to help. Of course, I’m not expecting to become fluent in a matter of months. Ideally, I’d like to have first-year proficiency by the end of the summer. I’m super excited because I love learning new languages. Arabic will be my fifth foreign language.
  5. Prepare to take the LSAT. Oh trust me, this came as a shock to me too. I’d always loved law and wanted to go to law school in high school. Quickly though, I realized I didn’t want to work in a law firm or in criminal/civil law. In college, I mostly forgot about law. Then, I started considering it again because an international law degree could open many opportunities either in the foreign service, the UN, or the OECD. Now, I’m planning to apply to law school next year and attend as soon as I return from Morocco. 
  6. Get a book deal. Granted, this one isn’t really a to-do because there’s nothing I can do at this point. Except pray. A lot. 


So if you run into me this summer, most likely I will look like this:

Angry RebeccaDon’t worry, though. I won’t be mad at you — I’ll just be working on my thesis in my head.

What are your plans for the summer? Are you someone who likes to makes goals?




7 thoughts on “My Goals for the Summer

  1. Hey Rebecca! That’s so cool that you’re doing two honors concentrations!!! I didn’t even know that was possible at U of M. And going to morocco sounds amazing! Are you taking an Arabic class in the fall in addition to self-teaching? How is the honors summer fellowship going? I always find your blog fascinating, and I can’t wait to read more about how your summer and your research goes! 🙂

    • I’m not sure about the Arabic class in the fall. I would have to take the entrance exam and try to fit it into my schedule, but I’d love to. HSF is great. If you’re considering an honors thesis, I highly recommend it. Thank you so much Maggie! It’s always great to hear from you. 🙂

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