I spent a good deal of time today whacking through the syllabus for the online Nature in Lit: I need to have enough put together that the VP can sign off on it. She needs to see that I have the basic nuts and bolts in place, such as a syllabus, course goals and outcomes, how to contact the professor, assignment requirements, blah blah blah. I need to go back to what paperwork I have online (the stuff I didn't lose in that mysteriously missing folder, along with the mysteriously missing book) so I can take a stab at going through the checklist, such as it is, and making sure I can show everything I need to show in order to move forward: not just get all the signatures again but get the thing approved by the College-Wide Curriculum Committee and the Academic Senate (which still does have the authority to approve curriculum, though our new president wants to usurp that authority).
In the process, I was trying to find a textbook I could like well enough to use. The one I most wanted to use is, sadly, out of print. I requested an examination copy of another, but I don't think I'll go with it: not only is it wildly expensive ($150+), it's so rigidly thematically organized and so lacking in older material that I can't pull it apart to do things the way I want. So, as of now, it looks like I'm going to go with the old reliable Norton Book of Nature Writing, college edition, which I used the first time or two I taught the class. It's "only" $50 (give or take) for a brand new copy, and it's easily available much cheaper used. Plus it's got enough of a decent selection that I can work with it, and it's pretty much chronologically arranged, which often works well for me in lit electives.
And I'm so in the groove, I kinda don't want to stop--but if I don't, I'll be nailed to the computer for many more hours; dinner will be ridiculously late, and I won't get to sleep until god knows when. But it's nice to feel that I've broken through some kind of resistance or fear and am making headway.
I probably won't get to work on anything of my own tomorrow--enrollment has not moved at all over the weekend, so Cathy and I will be having another goat orgy--but if I can at least make a stab at getting my first week handouts ready, I'll be happy.
And I'll almost certainly post again tomorrow...