I'm also feeling a bit of vague anxiety that I don't think I can do anything about yet -- annoying. See, it's pretty likely that the 'congratulations' yesterday was because I'd won a fellowship. The only one I applied for is called the Steffenson-Cannon, and it's quite nice -- something like $12K for a year, renewable for a second year if they like me. It would mean I wouldn't need to teach for the next two years...and while I do love teaching, this semester off has made clear to me how much more I can get done when I'm not teaching. If I get it, it gives me a bunch of options. I could stay here, of course -- it would cover rent. I could move to California, and while I'd probably still need to supplement my income some, I'd have a decent base for rent there, especially if I were sharing a space with other people. Those are options.
*Or* I could go to Chicago as planned, and use the money in part to pay off some outstanding debts, and in part to pay for lots of plane tickets back here; I could fly out every month, spend a week or so here, meet with professors, work on conference stuff. That's what I'd like to do; it gives me a lot of flexibility. But. I have this weird feeling that it's not quite kosher -- that they gave me the fellowship because they expected me to be staying here, and working harder on the conference, and just generally more involved with the academic community than I can be if I'm only coming in for a week every month. I feel like I need to check with Katie (the creative writing chair) about this, to make sure that they're not going to be upset with me. I don't *think* it's a fellowship that requires that I be in residence, but even if it's not a requirement, it may be an expectation. And I can ignore that expectation, but I would feel kind of strange about it. I'm not going to stay in Salt Lake for it, I don't think. But I could give up the fellowship.
Ugh -- I'm probably just borrowing trouble. For one thing, they haven't officially given it to me. Maybe I'm jumping to conclusions. And even if they do give it to me, they may not really care if I'm going to be mostly in Chicago. But it makes me nervous and stressed, and I wish I could talk to Katie now, but I really ought to wait until I get official word, which will probably happen within a week. Eep eep.
Back to Cavendish. I could wish it were more gripping reading.