Friday, June 25, 2004

Long time no blog

You'd think that with the semester over, things would be slower around here and I'd have more time for fun things like blogging.
But you'd be wrong.
Life has been much busier these past few weeks, not only because my two wonderful monsters are such fun, but also because we lazy academics often end up doing more work in the summer than during the school year.

Let me put that another way: we end up putting in more hours over the course of a day during the summer.

The big reason? Guilt. When I teach a full day of classes, have office hours and independent studies with students, meetings with colleagues and just general 'face time' from 9 to 5, then come home and grade papers and answer emails after the kids have gone to bed, I don't begrudge myself an hour to relax or blog or watch America's Next Top Model. But in the summer, there's none of the scheduled things, so you feel like you should just be working all day. That work is pleasantly interrupted by playing with the kids, doing yard work, repairing things around the house, and so on, but the overall hours spent keep creeping up.

Luckily, I have only three more major deadlines in the next month: an article for Literature Compass called "The Problem of Transformation: The Use of Medieval Sources in Fantasy Literature," a short, and hopefully humorous piece for Old English Newsletter called "An Anglo-Saxonist Gets His Fifteen Minutes, or, what happens when the media pays attention" (hint: they simplify the argument over the dating of Beowulf; imagine!), and an NEH Grant Proposal for the Tolkien Encyclopedia under their Reference Materials category (hell on earth). All of this will be done by July 15.

One quick thing: Close to final version of the J.R.R. Tolkien Encyclopedia Table of Contents is being reviewed by editor, editorial board, etc. Hopefully people will start getting letters requesting contributions. I'll keep you posted via this space.

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Web Chat on Thursday

I'll be doing a live web chat about Tolkien scholarship for the Chronicle of Higher Education at noon on Thursday. Here's the link:The Chronicle: Colloquy Live: Frodo Lives! And So Does Tolkien Scholarship

Note that you can log on and ask questions in advance, and I'll try to answer as many as I can.