Today I met with Herb to talk about my prelims and my review. Basically, he said my review can't go another inch until I clearly structure it around questions that people are interested in seeing answered. I have tried and tried to do this, and I have obviously not succeeded... yet. I just wish that Herb had told me this at the beginning or middle of the break instead of the end.
He also wants to see more incorporation (i.e. citation) of the current leaders in the field who are actively shaping the paradigm I work under. For my prelims, he wants me to figure out where my work in general fits into the paradigm. This, of course, is essential, and right now I couldn't tell you.
Ok, it wasn't a bad meeting, it just wasn't a feel-good motivational kind of meeting. It was holy-crap-I-have-so-much-to-think-about kind of meeting. Overwhelming. And kind of discouraging that the review still isn't going anywhere. I just signed up to have the lab read it again next month, so at least that gives me another deadline.