Hey y’all. I successfully defended my dissertation this morning. Just call me Dr. Sista Outsider! 🙂

Love and light,



As you all know, I’m  nearly done with this grad life (Hallelujah!) and I’ve started working on a few new projects. I’ve also created a new website that will serve as my main blog going forward.   I am transitioning from grad student to full time writer and publisher (and who knows what else, a sista is looking for a job too!), and I decided that I needed a new website/blog to represent this aspect of my work and life.  For those of you who have not already done so, please consider following me over at my new spot,  SAndreaAllen.  I’ll share updates, and even a little of my works in progress. 🙂

I still love this blog and I will continue to post here, but I do intend to spend more time over at the new spot.  I hope to see you there!


Back to Work!

After a glorious two-week break, I’m back at home and sharpening up the pencils (figuratively of course, who does that?), to get back to work on the dissertation.  We had a wonderful time in Florida, and we also got to spend a little time with T.’s family on our trip down.  She’s back across the pond, but will be back in a couple of months on her next rotation.

In the mean time, I’ve got work to do, and I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. I’m almost there y’all, almost there!  It’s been difficult to get back on my writing schedule, but I’m finally starting to feel like myself again and able to focus on my work.

For your viewing pleasure, here a couple of photos from the trip. 🙂


Oh, did I tell y’all I am a space geek? We stopped by the U.S. Space and Rocket Center on the way back home!


Summer Plans, Or Nah?

Summer is upon us, and while some of us are off to do fieldwork, working on articles for publication, visiting family, or whiling the days away on nothing at all, I’ve decided to devote this summer to completing and starting a couple of new projects, as well as having a bit of fun.

  • First on the list is wrapping up this dissertation. I am so over grad school and its attending melodrama, and I’m just ready to move on with my life.  I’ve mostly enjoyed my experiences there, and I am grateful for the friendships I’ve forged and the lessons I’ve learned in graduate school. But it’s time, y’all. It’s time.
  • Related to the grad school shenanigans is the cancellation of my summer course due to low enrollment. I was pretty hyped about teaching this course on LGBTQ identities and popular culture, but I do believe that this is a blessing in disguise. My diss completion timeline just got a boost,  and I’ll have time to work on some other writing projects I’ve started. More on this later.
  • The JOB SEARCH.  I’ll go on the academic job market this year, but I’m also looking for alt-ac and post ac jobs. A girl’s gotta have options, ya’ know?
  • I don’t want to reveal too much about all the pots I’ve got on the stove right now, but I can share one thing:   I’m thinking about starting a podcast on Black lesbian literature and writers, past and present. What do y’all think? Would any of you listen? Be a guest on the show? I’d love to hear your suggestions. I’m in the planning stages, so email me if you want to talk about it.
  • Me and the Mrs. are heading to Florida next week to celebrate her birthday and one year of relationship bliss. We are looking forward to the R&R!
  • I’ve just come back from a couple of weeks with the fam, which is always a blast. I didn’t get to see many of my friends, but not for want of trying.

This is about the extent of my plans for the next couple of months. What are YOU doing this summer?

I’m Baaaaack!

Y’all. It’s been a minute since I’ve updated this blog; life has taken a couple of unexpected turns and I’ve had to get my priorities in order. Let me tell you what’s been going on:

To start, my love is now working on a project in the motherland, that’s right, Africa! Over my spring break I helped her move out of her place up north and get ready to move across the world. Before she left, we got to spend some time with her family and then spent some time here at my house before she left. Well, now it’s our house, since technically, we live here together even though she’s working overseas.  It’s kind of exciting and awesome and we are just as happy as we can be. 🙂  The good thing about where she works is that we are able to talk on the phone several times a day at no cost to either of us, and she gets to rotate back home every two months.  Ain’t life grand?

The dissertation writing has been going extremely well. So well that I’ll be defending in September! That’s the other reason I’ve been away from the blog; I really had to get my mind right so that I can finish this thing. I have enjoyed my time in graduate school, but it is time to get on with the rest of my life. I had a bit of a writing lull last year, and I just couldn’t get over the hump. Now, the words are flowing like water, and even though there may still be challenges ahead, I know that I can face them and move on with my work.

My two proposals to NWSA were accepted, so I’ll be in sunny Puerto Rico this fall. I also received word that my two articles for the Encyclopedia of Human Sexuality are going to be published next year (finally), so I’m pretty excited about that. I’m trying not to submit to anything else until the diss is completely drafted (July), but then I’ll need to get one of these chapters revised for an article submission. I need to have that line on my CV as well.  It never ends, does it?

I’ve also realized that I just need to stay off of the internets.  It’s so easy to get caught up in the day-to-day drama that we read, see, or experience on the web, and I just can’t worry about that right now. It also seems like every academic I know is writing “think pieces” (when did that become a thing?), and lordt knows I want to get in on some of these conversations. However, I just can’t right now. Really, I can’t. I’ve got my own work to do, and no one is paying me to write for this or that blog or news source right now. And no one ever will if I don’t finish this thing I started. I don’t even have time to READ them right now, much less respond to them or write my own.  I can do that later. My only focus is getting what I came here for, and that is this Ph.D.  I’m so close I can taste it, and everything I’m doing right now is making sure I meet my deadlines, so I can walk across that stage in December.

So, this is about it for me right now. How’s it been going with you?

Starting the Week Off Right

So far, today has been another morning filled with productivity. I was up at 7 and read for the diss for over an hour, took a few notes that will jump start me tomorrow morning. I also wrote my lecture for this online class I’m teaching (y’all know I got a couple of side hustles), and finished setting up the classroom for that course. I’ve also washed and folded two loads of laundry, checked in on my other online class, and straightened up the office a little. I do plan to take the rest of the day off, because this week is already filling up fast with meetings, coffee dates, and other academic ephemera.

Oh, and did I tell y’all that my Mac crashed the other day? Thankfully, I kept my old Dell from back in the day and it’s a viable solution for the next few weeks. I am definitely replacing the Mac, but I’ll need to wait until a little bit, ’cause you know, money don’t grow on trees.

All in all a fair start to the week, and I’m really committed to keeping to my schedule  this semester. Grad school is sucking the soul out of me, and I’m the only one who can do something about that. 

Here’s to a productive semester!

Baby Steps

Today was the first time in a long time where I’ve felt like I’ve done some good work on the dissertation. I cleaned up all of the footnotes in chapter one, and did a little editing. I also mapped out my next steps and wrote out two pages of notes for the davenport section. I also started an online (Facebook) support group for dissertation writers, and hopefully folks will actually participate. We shall see. Either way, I feel like I’ve actually done something, something that moves this project forward in a meaningful, albeit incremental way.  I’m excited about what I’m doing tomorrow, and I had to force myself to stop working tonight. That’s progress right?