(*A note from the Director of Graduate Studies, Professor Jill Christman: Ph.D. Literature student, Nathan Myers, has worked for the Department in the past composing student profiles for our website, so when I wanted a profile on him I asked him to write his own. Knowing Nathan’s background in fiction writing, I also invited him to indulge his artistic liberties. Happily, he took me up on my invitation; while you’ll recognize an edge of hyperbole here amidst the playful language, you’ll also find a lot of truth about Nathan and his continuing studies in the English Department. Enjoy. And thank you, Nathan. –jcc)
Nathan Myers recently began his fourth year working toward a Ph.D. in English Literature. After completing his master’s degree in creative writing at Ball State in 2007, for which he composed a fictional thesis, he transitioned into the doctoral program, having long been interested in postcolonial literatures. Nathan says that he is indebted to the English department’s challenging and supportive faculty and values his many opportunities. In addition to teaching introductory courses in composition and creative writing, he has worked as a research assistant for several faculty members, observing and practicing some overlooked facets of the occupation.
Outside of the multifarious and gratifying commissions completed on behalf of the English department, his zeal for travel has enriched his academic experience and proven to be monetarily agreeable in proportion to its quality of diversion. He also credits jobs outside of the English department as pivotal to his development as a scholar and writer. He fondly reminisces in particular about an illuminating job as a shipping clerk for a light bulb manufacturer. Additionally, he recalls his work as a hospice volunteer without jaundice, despite his premature departure after the unfortunate detonation of a patient who overlooked the disablement of her oxygen tank prior to the ignition of her cigarette.
Having recently completed his comprehensive exams, Nathan plans to continue developing a dissertation that means to approximate the protein [sic] nature of W.B. Yeats. In his free time he continues to run for fun, re-watch The Decalogue and attempt complex baking projects. Regarding these confections, hitherto, he has been most successful in the assemblage of tiered tarts and tartlets, preferring the latter because they are comically diminutive. He has also grown particularly fond of any edible he can adorn with a delectable orange glaze or serve with a delightful beaker of Darjeeling.
Nathan’s passion for baking was cultivated in the wake of his fondness for alliterative couplings. One Saturday’s indulgence in the pairing of “tea cookies and target practice” stimulated an unlikely fervor for flour and butter. This passion for alliterative activities was in turn awakened by his admiration for Sue Grafton’s “alphabet series,” a thrilling literary achievement he lauds as an elegant affirmation of alphabetical succession. He struggles to envisage the ecstasies that await him in “Z” is for Zoophilia, but fears his inability to bear the weight of that terminal journey, long ago commenced and shortly concluded.
Though Nathan routinely and greedily indulges in those luxuries exclusive to Muncie, he hopes to soon explore ancillary topography. He is doubtful of holding to a lone location and vocation and predicts that a wrangled, latent infantilism typical of latter adolescence will materialize rapidly upon the completion of his Ph.D.