Recently on the CBW maillist, Karen Uehling of Boise State University posted the following note, and she has very kindly allowed me to repost it here. If you have thought about doing some writing but have felt fragmented by our everyday teaching-grading-and-committee-ing load, consider the very generous offer posted below.
When I returned from the CCCC, I found the most recent issue of JBW had arrived, and I want to congratulate the editors, Rebecca Mlynarczyk and Bonne August, and the contributors on an excellent issue. I immediately read one article and previewed the others and I intend to read them all.
Consider submitting your Chicago C's paper for publication. I know we have to deal with applying for next year’s C’s first, but after that, and before you escape too much for the summer, read over your Chicago CCCC paper, polish it, and submit. Or you can even organize the papers within your panel into a cluster of pieces on a theme. I was able to do this with a cluster coming out of a panel I had organized at a C's on BW mission statements. You could also consider bwe, CBW’s electronic journal, or Teaching English in the Two-Year College that takes shorter, practical pieces*and other journals.
In my opinion, those who teach a lot know the most about BW and the students we serve, but finding the time to think on paper, to record your impressions, to provide a context, and to “theorize” your ideas is so difficult. You need to do this before you forget. We need your knowledge. Many of you teach at a community college or put together a living from several schools as an adjunct, and there is just no time left over to write. But we need what you know. And you need to explain it to yourself and articulate it for others. When I began teaching at BSU, I taught as many as six sections of BW and often five writing courses, including three BW. At that time I was just so exhausted I could barely do anything, but I learned so much. Now I have more time to write, and I wish I could remember more.
In light of all this, some of us were discussing the idea of forming “writing mentors” to help those who are trying to kick start themselves into publication. I would be happy to read a draft, offer feedback, help you think through the issues you raise, the context, the possible places to publish. We could negotiate the degree of collaboration you might want. There are probably others who have been around BW for a while who would also help.
The knowledge base of our discipline depends on us and what we know, what we have the time, concentration, and patience to record and pass on to others.
Karen S. Uehling
Department of English
Boise State University
1910 University Drive
Boise, ID 83725-1525