An editor’s job never ends
For reasons that are still unknown to me, the directors of both of the academic journals of the Romance Studies Department have signed me on as editor to their magazines. Prof. González Espitia is the Editor of Hispanófila, which is in his words: “a journal with a long tradition that for over half a century has published essays on literary, linguistic, and cultural topics dealing with the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking worlds.” For this journal I asses incoming articles for fit with our editorial criteria. It is a very enriching job where I learn a lot from the (to me) anonymous authors and from Prof. Gonzalez Espitia’s experience and wisdom. The other academic journal, Romance Notes is led by Prof. Oswaldo Estrada and is also over fifty years old. For this publication I do the final proofreading to make sure all punctuation, notations, etc. are correct and that the article is ready to publish.
Seeing both ends of the editorial process is very interesting and makes me think about my own hack writing. I did send an article for consideration to a Spanish journal last year, of course it was rejected. But once I settle in on my dissertation, I will try again, this time I will shoot for more journals in order to increase my chance of publication.
Part of the problem with being an eternal optimist is that one always thinks things are going to be easier than they are. This last semester is a good example. The semester started off uphill, with me losing my washer and dryer (see previous post), getting a speeding ticket, and more importantly having to finesse my doctoral committee and getting my prospectus approved.
The exam was on November 7. You can read my previous post about it, but is was at the same time a grueling yet highly enriching experience. That afternoon I celebrated by playing soccer with my colleagues (more on that later) and then by going to see Benjamin Britten’s opera, Curlew River, inspired by the Japanese Noh theater (more on that also later). And of course, after all that by having a drink (or two) at my favorite bar, Zog’s.
After passing my exam I slumped into a bit of a post prospectus depression. My next goal is defending my dissertation, but that is not planned until the Spring of 2016. So all of a sudden I was without an immediate goal. This required some getting used to. I could finally, after three years, watch movies (more on that later), or enjoy dead time. That first Saturday I celebrated with a glorious breakfast at my favorite breakfast place Ye Olde Waffle Shop, and waltzing around Chapel Hill as if I owned it. Stopping at this store and that, hanging out at the old bookstore, and the museum.
As always teaching is my passion and this semester did not disappoint. I taught two sections of Intermediate Spanish 203, one of them in the Philosophy building. This allowed me to enjoy their philosophical bathroom graffiti.
Nature abhors a vacuum, so I soon changed my rhythm and got busy. I talked strategy with my professors to attack the dissertation, Prof. González Espitia named me to be a grad student editor of the department´s literary journal Hispanófila, and I started to prepare my dissertation by re-visiting the first four works of my beloved Padre Isla.