Friday, April 26, 2013

Recent Things

It has been a very busy spring, with perhaps one too many trips to the airport, even for me. My son, not yet three, can now effortlessly identify the corporate logo of Southwest (those cheery wings with a heart in the middle), delineate the various stages of pre-boarding, and nap in-flight like a champ. I had not planned for him to become such a savvy frequent flyer, at least not by this age.

Yesterday I was telling one of my students to make sure he keeps his online project fresh with recent things, even if they are mere notes jotted down, images collected, citations, or ideas for future writing projects.

I realized during the conversation that I need to take my own advice. So here are some recent things:

Nathan Martin over at Room 220 wrote a flattering and spot-on review of my airport book.

I talked about this review, among other things, on a guest post at the Bloomsbury Literary Studies blog.

I continue to work on my Brad Pitt book, which has taken some weird new turns that I'm excited about. Remember Pitt's fleeting cameo in Being John Malkovich? Well, it got me thinking...

I'm also starting to sketch out (at least in my head) my book about northern Michigan. This past week I presented my brief autobiography to the Environment Program at Loyola, and this informal presentation helped me focus some of the interests and concerns that I hope to address in that book.

Speaking of environment, I've been gradually writing my paper for ASLE (the Association for the Study of Literature and Environment), which I'll be presenting in May in Lawrence, Kansas. My paper is on weather at airports, or how airports actually maintain or even create certain concepts of weather.

Most recently I've been working on a brief essay on jet bridges, those transitional objects that we pass through on the way to flight—common, bland, and relatively invisible. Or, as they announce of themselves, "uneven surfaces." The essay should be out soon, and it is part of a much larger project, one that I'll talk more about next time.