One of life’s great ironies is that those of us not born to wealth have to spend the years we’re young enough to enjoy ourselves stabilizing our situation until suddenly we realize we’re too old to do that kind of thing any more. I know I’m being overly dramatic, but it often does feel like life operates backwards. My professional career began where I’d hoped it would end, as a professor. I taught and published for almost twenty years and really nobody paid much attention. At least I had my teaching. I also had a family to support, so I had to accept the shift to publishing when that came along with an offer of a full-time job. Thus it has been for about a decade now. Within the last decade colleagues have begun to approach me, asking me to contribute to academic volumes, or to be involved in pursuits that are more associated with professors than editors. I could do with more irony in my diet.
All of this is a long-winded invitation to check out the new Journal of Gods and Monsters. I probably won’t be writing articles for it; lack of library and research time (both of which I had when invitation-free) assure that my scribbling will be non-technical and hopefully of the more general interest crowd. Then why am I telling your about this journal, fresh from the box? I’m on the Executive Advisory Committee and the first Call for Papers has been issued. Now, this blog really has no way to include attachments that I know of, so if anyone wants in on the ground floor for this journal please contact me (the About page on this website says how). I contributed to the first number of the first volume of the Journal of Ancient Near Eastern Religions and look where I am now! You just never know.
In addition to the books on which I’ve been assiduously working, I’ve got a number of commitments to edited volumes and encyclopedias (these invitations waited until I was safely out of academe before rolling in). The monster crowd is, I assure you, a welcoming one. As we seem to have turned the corner into autumn a touch early this year, and I see leaves beginning to change before August is out, my mind turns toward the realm of the uncanny. It may be less academic than ancient religions, but the world of monsters feels much more relevant these days. If you’re a researcher in these realms I’ll be glad to send you a call for papers.