I did promise something spectacular for my 500th post, and here it is:
Not quite what you were expecting.
I’ve been quietly making some spectacular changes to my life. During my blog break in June/July I researched, wrote and submitted an application to study for a PhD in English, and have recently received confirmation that my application was successful.
This means that from September I’ll be a full-time student for the next three years. At my age that does sound faintly ridiculous, but there it is. Clearly, a PhD is going to involve quite a lot of work – 100,000 words and a bibliography the length of a football pitch. I aim to give it my full and undivided attention, which means that I’m withdrawing from my online and blog-related activities.
Writing a blog takes a surprising amount of time and effort, as those of you who maintain blogs will know. Keeping up with the blog circuit also takes a lot of time and effort. Art doesn’t pay enough; at least, not in my case. Admittedly, gaining a further qualification also isn’t going to pay the bills, in the short term, but in the longer term at least it has some reliable earning potential. I hope that this period of study might lead eventually to further work in research, publishing or undergraduate teaching.
Obviously I will continue to stitch in whatever spare time I end up having, but only for my own amusement. I’ve already closed my flickr account and will be making a decision about my facebook page in the coming weeks. I still have a few pieces of work for sale here on the blog (see the tab at the top of this page). I have course fees to pay, and, frankly, I need the money.
So, there it is – my 500th post is also my last, at least for a while.
It’s been a lot of fun: I’ve met some incredible people from all over the world, some of whom have become real, true friends and will (I hope!) remain such. Most of you have made me laugh at some point; all of you have made me think. It’s been good to show my work here, and to write about it, and to read your thoughts about it. It’s been very satisfying to know that my work lives with some of you in your homes; little stitches on cloth witnessing the passing of time, the living of different lives.
But mostly it’s been good to travel with you on this brief passage through my life – your life, our lives – and I thank you you for it.
This is it!