I had a long conversation with a friend last night about post-undergrad plans. He's a TA at the University of Chicago and owns two Master's degrees, so I trust he has a good sense of what goes on in higher-level academic circles and what it takes to get there.
The conclusion? Nothing I want to do is going to be easy.
Getting into grad school is hard. Getting a job in academia is harder. Writing a book is tough. Getting it published is even tougher. Having it be reasonably well-received is something you can only hope for.
And my dream book that involves traveling to six different countries? I don't even want to contemplate the odds.
Sometimes I feel like I should scrap my dreams for a nice desk job. But I guess no one said things would be easy.
You can become what you want to be, right?
The person who perseveres will prosper, right?
On rare occasions there will also be tears, won't there?
But nevertheless, brave the Pit.
This, my friends, is the handsome man's policy. ;-)