Since my last update, I have come across a number of problems with my project which I have had to solve. The first of which is that I have not been receiving enough feedback. This is a problem because my current project, an artefact and a short commentary answering “to what extent can I tailor a dystopian novel to the requirements of a modern audience”, requires a large amount of public feedback in order for me to answer the question. Without this feedback, I have been unable to write the majority of my report; as I only have 1000 words, the feedback I receive will have to be present throughout my essay, meaning that I realistically need this feedback to begin writing.
This just isn’t possible, especially given the number of months I have spent trying to get this feedback, compared to the weeks I have remaining until my report needs to be submitted for marking. My solution for this problem is to make my project an investigative essay as opposed to an artefact, changing the wording of the question so that it looks more into dystopian literature in general as opposed to solely my own writing. I have dedicated a total of 5 hours over the past two days to fixing my EPQ question, talking it through with my supervisor and making a number of essay plan drafts. Below is the evolution of my question, starting from the very beginning of the project:
What is the ideal dystopian novel for a modern audience?
Can I write the ideal dystopian novel for a modern audience?
To what extent can I write a dystopian novel for a modern audience?
To what extent can I tailor a dystopian narrative to the requirements of a modern audience?
How can a dystopian novel be tailored to the requirements of a modern audience?
How successfully can a dystopian narrative be tailored to the requirements of a modern audience?
How successfully can a dystopian narrative be tailored to the requirements of a contemporary audience?
How successfully can a dystopian narrative be tailored to the requirements of 15-20 year olds in 2017?
To what extent can dystopian narratives be tailored to the requirements of 15-20 year olds in 2017?
In the list above, the questions in bold are those which I came up with on the 13th – 14th September, in the presence of my supervisor who approved each one after explaining them to her. The question which has been underlined is the one which I have decided upon for the time being. This new question will allow me to use all of my research surrounding existing dystopian products conducted in Easter 2017, as well as referencing my own writing to ensure that the last few months of my work do not go to waste. Instead of submitting it as an artefact, my opening chapters will allow me to put my research into action, referencing pages where I have conformed to the trends found in my case study of successful dystopian novels.
This new, essay-based EPQ project has been fully approved by my supervisor, who believes that not having to collect so much feedback will make my project significantly more manageable. In addition to this, she believes that having a broader scope will be more interesting more both myself and for a reader, resulting in a finished investigation that I will have learned from.
Another problem that I have encountered is the amount of coursework I am having to complete in other subjects. Both Media Studies and English Language require me to do extensive amount of work outside of lessons, which is clashing harshly with my EPQ. I spoke to my supervisor about this, and she agreed that – as coursework deadlines cannot be negotiated – I may have to push my EPQ back to the March 2018 deadline to avoid compromising my other subjects. This will not be a huge setback, as it will allow me to work at a much more comfortable pace, but as this will be coming close to my final A2 exams I would rather not have to work on my EPQ on top of this. Over the next week I will be able to get a better idea as to how difficult balancing my subjects will be, and I will make an appropriate decision accordingly.