So, the log-jam problem has been slightly rectified. My solution consisted of talking to my supervisor about my concerns and her suggesting that we don’t talk the next day after all, that I give myself another week to work on things and see what develops.
In that week, I started a couple of other stories, worked on the ones I already had and managed to get two of them to the point where I was [not happy exactly but] willing to let her see them. I sent them along with a rather self-effacing email (which I now hope she didn’t read as if I was fishing for compliments). This morning over coffee I had my head in my hands, worrying that I didn’t want to put my wonderfully supportive supervisor into the position where she felt that she had ‘to be nice about it’ when I really feared that the pieces where utter rubbish.
10am. Skype is binging at me and my stomach is a ball of lead pipe tied into knots (how’s that for a ridiculous metaphor?) The first thing Wonderful Supervisor said when the skype call connected was, “I really think you’re being far too hard on yourself!”
She had lots of supportive things to say and looking at the pieces with fresh eyes, I realise maybe they aren’t as rubbish as I originally thought.
Supervisor Extraordinaire also pointed out that my discomfort (if you can call the anguish I have been living in for three weeks ‘discomfort’) likely stems from the fact that I always have in my head. “My thesis is about women and food” so that when I sit down to write, I don’t just sit down to write a story, I sit down to write “a story about women and food”. The very artificial nature of this approach makes me feel awkward about what I produce.
Anyway, apparently it’s not as bad as I thought.