Finally out from under the avalanche--for now
I'm not sure if I've ever had to work at such an unrelenting pace for so long. It definitely goes back to January, and I think actually it's been a whole year, since the middle of last June when I became department Chair. I have at points had the subsequent twenty-five days planned out to about the hour so I knew how much work I would have to do, and when I would get it done (I mostly kept those hellish schedules). But on July 4 I sent in the course book for the Modern Scholar course on poetry, Monday I sent in my review of Alaric Hall's Elves in Anglo-Saxon England (very short version: read this book!), and today I sent in my SASLC entry on "Maxims, Aphorisms" (short version: there aren't any that aren't also, in more places, labeled something else, so we should delete the category and just stick with "proverbs"). Today my gratis copies of the previous Modern Scholar Course (A Way with Words III: Understanding Grammar for Powerful Communication," or, as the cartoon on the cover says "Grammar the Drout Way") arrived at my door, and copies of Tolkien Studies volume 5 should be there soon.
I still have stuff to do this summer: write the two papers that have come out of our computer analysis of Old English project; draft the first chapter of the new Tolkien book for my agent; get Anglo-Saxon Aloud finished; write and record the new Old English Poetry CD I'm doing (Modern English lectures to be interspersed with the poetry); design the Logic and Language course; organize the department files, which haven't been organized in years and years; get going on the Philology textbook and the column, with Scott Kleinman, on etymology. But, for the first time since last June, I am not behind in anything. Weird feeling.
So I am going fishing.