So now it's back to the drawing board. With the book finally in the mail, I've started on book #2. I have a draft proposal written and over the course of the day, I've been adding thoughts, amending ideas and annotating directions to pursue as I work on compiling a bibliography, ordering materials on Inter-Library Loan (including issues of Mademoiselle from the 50s and 60s and old copies of Photoplay and Modern Screen), and planning/drafting my sample chapter. I've decided to work on the one on female group protagonists, partly because I have two conference papers on the subject and also because I feel it links to other chapters--as my friend Noah so aptly put it, it also has to act a preview of coming attractions--and isn't too theoretical or abstract. I've also done some archival research in the UK that I can put to good use here. Tonight I have to list my shows and films, think about the popular fiction with which these engage and narrow down a time period (or two) that justifies special attention. I'm thinking the 60s-70s and 90s-200os (Sex and the City is important, as are the Spice Girls and Mean Girls) but the 1930s has much to offfer, not least Gold Diggers of 1933/35/37 and The Women. Perhaps the best strategy is to start general and then narrow down to these two eras, mindful that I cannot be comprehensive.
I'm also well aware now of the perils of over-researching. No book can be perfect, nobody can cover everything but I can give my unique take on the topic with as much clarity, evidence and insight as possible. Starting with a realization of what I cannot realistically cover is perhaps the wisest possible approach--and one that will help me deliver this book within the next two years.
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