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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

THE BAD INDIANS WINTER TERM SKYPE TOUR!

I'VE FINALLY DISCOVERED HOW TO BE IN TWO PLACES AT ONCE

I love visiting with students who are reading my book; the energy, questions, and stories exchanged on both sides is exhilarating and inspirational.  However, as a professor myself, I realize there is little time in the academic calendar for scheduling an author visit, not to mention all the expenses (airfare, hotel, meals, honorarium) involved.  So, I've adopted a grand idea:  If you are teaching Bad Indians and would like to schedule a Skype visit with me, and if you can arrange a nominal honorarium, now's the time to get your date on my calendar. To get a plan started, email me at mirandad@wlu.edu and I'll get back to you promptly.


In October, I skyped with David Carlson's class at Cal State University, San Bernadino.  We had a fabulous time!

IDEAS FOR A SKYPE VISIT:

Decide what kind of Skype visit you want: Q &A?  Writing workshop? Discussion of a particular piece from Bad Indians (or another book)?  Part reading from my work, part Q&A?  Let me know the general course curriculum ahead of time, too, so that I have time to plan what will work best for your particular focus.  For example, if you are coming from Women and Gender Studies perspective, I'll choose different material than if you are coming from a Creative Writing perspective.

Given your current group of students and classroom situation, think about where you will position the monitor where the students will see me; try to keep me at their eye level.  During Q&A, think about having someone responsible for turning the monitor/camera eye toward the student speaking, so I can see that student - or, have students with questions walk up to a particular spot within my range.

Visiting with a "talking head" can be impersonal on both sides; I love having your students introduce themselves to me before they ask a question.  Just a quick, "Hi, I'm Jessica" is fine, but more is great if they feel like letting me know their background or fields of interest.

Ahead of time, give the students my blog URL and encourage them to explore past posts, my bio, tribal website, and so on.  I think it helps them feel a little less shy and may help generate questions and conversation.

HONORARIUM?  

One hour Skype visit to a university classroom:  $300.

One hour Skype visit to your book group:  $150

One hour Skype visit to a Native community college, university or high school: free (seeing Native faces makes my day!)

One hour Skype visit to a high school:  free (but I do love thank-you notes, or copies of any interesting projects like a video book promo, a performance of a poem or story)!

MY TEACHING SCHEDULE WINTER TERM:

For your scheduling plans, please know that I am definitely not available during these times January through April 4 (there are, of course, the usual committee and department meetings, office hours and conferencing to work around, but these are the absolutely inflexible times - please keep in mind that I am in Virginia, and on east coast time):

M and W, 2:30-3:55
T and TH, 10:10 - 2:50


So as we approach the New Year, I'll make my toast to technology, and how it allows us to meet, talk, question, and exchange ideas despite obstacles of distance, time and funding.  Looking forward to hearing from you, and thank you again for the warm, loving support of my work.

Deborah





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