Monday, October 1, 2012

Full of Sound and Fury, Signifying Nothing

Yes, I am grading freshman essays, why do you ask? I have a lot to go (like I need to do 5 tonight to catch up but I don't think that's going to happen) but I need a little break from reading the same thinking and organizational problems over and over again.

Instead, I took 15 minutes to brainstorm up a to-do list on my book manuscript, which I have kind of had to neglect quite a bit in the past few weeks. Part of the problem, I realized, is that for some stupid reason the date for posting mid-term grades was moved way up this year instead of week 8 or 9, which really sucks. I like to have a major assignment or two not only written but graded and handed back in all the classes, which means the courses have been incredibly front-loaded. And the numbers of students dropping have been low! Argh. I don't know if this means I have willfully blind students in my classes or that posting the grades for some of them will cause them to actually go away. If they don't go, I'm going to have to find the time to call them in and point out that they have yet to complete any assignments, and that those are required to pass the class. I hope they drop of their own recognizance. Of course, if they had the self-awareness to know what they need to do to pass, they would not be avoiding every single written assignment in the course, would they?

Anyway.

I have a question for those of you who have written/revised a book manuscript for a publisher --- did you have a bibliography for each working chapter, or just throw everything in one file? And did the publisher want it as one biblio or a separate one for each chapter? I am updating each chapter's biblio separately, so far, and will weave them all together when I am done updating things. I think. I wondered if this was the best way to go. Tell me, oh internets. Because I am going to update three small proofreading edits to the chapter and count that as time served towards revising. Updating bibliographies is also doable after grading about 12 comp essays. Anything requiring more thought or fewer comma splices, not so much.

8 comments:

Sapience said...

I do not have a book manuscript... but I use Zotero so that all updating is done automatically. It might be a major pain in the ass to start using Zotero at this late date, but it does make citing and bibliographies much easier.

reassignedtime said...

My experience is this: when I submitted my book proposal and sample chapters for consideration, I submitted them to presses that worked on some version of Chicago style, which meant that the citations were all in notes, which meant there was no reason to come up with separate bibliographies in the initial stages. I think this is the norm. When they requested the full manuscript, there was just one full-on works-cited. Check the publication guidelines for the presses that you're considering, and follow those, but I suspect that you're not going to need to come up with bibliographies for chapters in the initial stage.

Feminist Avatar said...

Ok, I'm a historian so this might be different, but for both the books I've done (a monograph and an edited collection), I just had endnotes/footnotes in each chapter and a single bibliography at the end of the book. In fact, for both I only had a select bibliography, so that the main place of reference was the footnotes. This meant though that each chapter had to cite each reference in full for the first citation.

Feminist Avatar said...

The publishers were both happy with this, but then this is what they were told they were getting (and agreed to effectively by giving me the contracts). When I submitted the monograph proposal, I just sent two sample chapters with footnotes and no bibliography.

Susan said...

What Dr C said. Except with both my books, I submitted the ms with my version of Chicago, and ultimately had to change it to house style. But if you're doing author/ date references, and plan to send a sample chapter or two, it makes sense to keep works cited by chapter in the short term. So don't worry about house style until you get a contract.

Bavardess said...

Can't help you on the bilbiography question, but I'm right there with you in grading hell.

Dr. Koshary said...

I'm with FA on this. I submitted one huge bibliography at the end, and footnotes as I went along. I know now that I have to convert the footnotes to endnotes, but no one yet has mentioned anything about individual chapter bibliographies. I'm in pseudology, so maybe an apples-to-oranges situation, but I wouldn't think it's drastically different for you.

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