Winter ’23/’24 Update

The Simms Society closes out 2023 and looks forward to a great 2024! Several updates for our membership:

American Literature Association

The Society will once again be putting on two panels at the upcoming American Literature Association conference, which will be held from 23-26 May in Chicago, IL. Scholars, both members and non-members of the Society, are invited to submit proposals for either or both of the two panels. The details can be found in the Call for Papers.

Plunkett Fellowship

Thanks to a generous donation from Society member Ron Plunkett, we are able to offer two $500 fellowships to help offset the cost of attending ALA. The two strongest student accepted paper proposals for ALA will be awarded the Ron Plunkett Fellowship in Simms Studies. Pending their attendance at the conference and delivery of their papers, these students will receive a $500 check from the Society.

Simms Review

The long-awaited next issue of the Simms Review is nearing completion. Review editor Todd Hagstette notes that Vols. 27-30 of the Review will be published as two double issues featuring work on Simms’s journalism produced by Society President Jeff Rogers. Work is currently being done to finalize the layout of these issues. We anticipate them getting to the printer early in 2024 and issues arriving in the mailboxes of members in early to mid spring. These issues are going to be treasure troves of scholarship about an under-explored aspect of Simms’s work–become a member or renew your dues today to be sure to get these valuable contributions to Simms studies!

After these two double issues, the Review will be transitioning to publishing the proceedings/delivered papers of our panels at ALA. Of course, traditional, peer-reviewed scholarly essays, book reviews, and other Simms-related materials will still be solicited and published as they are available!

Membership Campaign

In early January, this year’s donors will receive tax letters. Letters will also go out to about membership dues and member communication.

The Society has not had a dues-renewal campaign for several years, meaning that many people are still on the member rolls who have not paid dues in several years. With ever-increasing costs for shipping, website hosting, printing, and so forth, we need to be sure dues are kept up if the Society is to continue to survive and if we are to grow. Post-Covid ideas to grow the Society that began this year, like this summer’s Wigwam, also depend on an up-to-date membership roll.

To this end, January will also feature a dues renewal campaign. All members who have not current on dues will receive a letter asking them to renew their dues. These letters will also request email addresses. Members who do not renew their dues will be dropped from the membership rolls.

Dues-paid and life members will also receive a letter asking for their email addresses, as the Society will be largely moving to electronic-only communications.

Newsletter

Printing and shipping costs have increased dramatically over the last couple of years, and printing and physically mailing the Society’s Newsletter is no longer economically feasible. To that end, the Society newsletter will, in 2024, transition to a semi-annual electronic-only edition, sent out in early summer and at year’s end. These will be distributed both by email and posted here to the Society website. This space will serve as a supplement to the newsletter in between. Once an email list is established, every new post in this space will also be announced via email.

Updates from you!

All members are encouraged to send along any member news, updates to email or physical mailing addresses, concerns, queries, or other update to Society secretary-treasurer Matt Simmons.

Video volans and on to 2024!

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