Fall Semester Prep

Throwback to Fall 2020. Looks like we’ll be masking up again this semester.

I’ve faced some challenges these past couple weeks that have made it difficult to keep up with online activity. I have a wrist injury that has forced me, temporarily, to work with one hand. This makes certain tasks like typing much more difficult.

I’m trying to view this as a character-building experience. Certainly, it’s given me a new appreciation for the differently abled, as well as for current technology such as touch screens and software that includes voice to text options.

At the same time, the start of fall classes is fast approaching. This has demanded more, not less, computer time to organize assignments, activities, and syllabi, and to upload everything onto Canvas.

Typically, I am excited and energized to go back to school in the fall. This year is different. I find myself tired, struggling to manage an internal resistance to the idea of returning to campus. I suspect there are many reasons for this, but mostly I blame accumulated fatigue of the COVID pandemic.

Despite widespread accessibility of vaccines, in academia (and K-12), we face essentially the same challenges we faced this time last year; compounded by widespread resistance to the many effective tools now available to beat this pandemic.

In Missouri, where I live, the impact of this reluctance is clear: the delta variant has surged out of control. Lives are being lost or debilitated by the onslaught of a new version of the virus. That this situation was entirely preventable makes it even more tragic.

Despite the cloud of COVID, there is much to look forward to this fall. I always enjoy seeing my colleagues again, and nothing refreshes my spirit more then renewed engagement with students. I also have pending tasks on this blog that I’m excited to complete, such as my series on the query letter. (Sorry I haven’t posted more about that already, but as I said, I’ve had my mind on other tasks, and typing has been a slow slog.)

Finally, I have some very exciting plans for September: I will begin revealing the new cover designs for my Silver Web trilogy. The new cover for EOLYN is ready to go, with the unveiling scheduled for September 1. I’m leaving a teaser below to give you an idea of what the cover looks like. Other covers are on their way. All designs are by Autumn M. Birt at A Raven Design, and will be available in both ebook and paperback formats. I cannot wait to share them with you!

I’ll close this week’s post by wishing everyone continued good health as we go into fall and winter. Please take care of yourselves and your families and loved ones. If you aren’t yet vaccinated, please get vaccinated as soon as possible. If for some reason you can’t get vaccinated, then please use a mask. Nothing is more important than our shared good health.

I look forward to seeing you back for my next post!

Video produced via Paid Partnership with Canva.com.

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