To Finish Your Dissertation…

"The dissertation is the monument to the moment when the committee gave up" ~ Dr. D. Barry Lumsden

I shared the APA spelling information with my clients and decided it was a good time to throw the same information into my blog! Many of you work in places or attend universities in which arguments about whether to capitalize “internet” as a proper noun or to use a hyphen for “semistructured” occur. Twenty years ago, “internet” was a proper noun, but now it’s not (much to my chagrin). Many of my clients have the same struggle with their professors refusing to recognize that language is dynamic and changing. Every day, I get a document in which the professor inserted the hyphen into “semistructured” or “socioeconomic.” Neither of these words has been hyphenated since APA 5th edition of 2001. They made further adjustments in the 6th edition of 2009, and the 7th has been out since 2019. To be clear, I started using APA during its 4th edition of 1983. Yeah, I am that old, but also, I am that dynamic (Am I right?! Ha!). Thusly, I provide you with a link to the APA’s current spelling preferences.

And now a fun (to me) tangent…

Above are the famous cats and doors of Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, in a picture I took in December of 2022 while I strolled around with my family. I give you this photograph because the amount of cat graffiti I see the kids spraying seems to be proportional to the number of cats found on, under, and near cars and balconies. I also have a lot of love for Save a Gato, which is the group that offers a sanctuary in Old San Juan for dumped strays.

Below is a little graffiti humor I found at an abandoned high school in Hatillo, PR, where the airsoft and paintball clubs spend their weekends! The Graffiti Cat’s “Ha!” always cheers me up even as it lurks on the East wall of the courtyard turned overgrown jungle. (Why makes no sense, but I cannot help but laugh at it.) I think we have all had a day where we felt metaphorically hit by paintballs while being right about some writing-related discussion with colleagues or professors. I now arm you with tools! I hope you get to have a “Ha!” moment when you open that link to the APA’s spelling preferences. I know I said, “uh oh,” when I saw a few of the word preferences! LOL, HA!

We CAn’T win all the spelling ruckuses, but we can have fun during the debate! And sometimes, we go off on mental tangents, but tangential thinking can cause us to have creative breakthroughs!

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