Today I submitted my master’s thesis; three copies by snail mail — I had to choose airmail for the shortest possible delay. I guess that makes it the less environmental-friendly thesis of all. Now I am crossing my fingers for the best mark, so that I can proudly send it as a writing sample to Ph.D. applications. It was a difficult moment to let it go. The past month I just spent my time re-reading and re-reading, re-editing and re-editing my thesis in order to make sure everything was just perfect. Of course, Microsoft Office was there to screw perfection up. I had to correct plenty of small details, compatibility issues, and sloppy automated functions. After printing I still noticed a little mistake. It’s nothing really but enough to annoy the hell out of me, because it is a mistake done by a software that is clearly not as perfectionist as I am. Of course it is my own fault that I chose Ms Word to write my thesis with. I should have known better. At the beginning of the writing process I considered giving LaTeX a try, but then I figured that it would take too long to learn how to properly use it. Now, I have plenty of time, and I am definitely investing this time into digging all sorts of productivity softwares: LyX, LaTeX, BibTeX, time management tools, Linux OS, wiki, blog, web 2.0, etc.
Letting it go was a painful moment. Now I have a huge void in my daily routine. I don’t have the pleasure to sit at my computer and work on this piece of intellectual achievement. My only wish now is that this coming year passes as swiftly as possible and that I get accepted for a Ph.D. at a great university (my two best choices right now are Cambridge and the European University Institute) to continue this thesis into a dissertation. My primary concern now is to build up a convincing and competitive CV for my Ph.D. application. It is a little bit frightening because I don’t really know what truly matters for Ph.D. and grants applications. I have to get a good job in London for one year, possibly related to research for experience. I wonder if I should send some parts of my thesis as article to peer-reviewed journals. If anyone has any words of advice to give me, they will be very much appreciated.