I received an email this morning. As I have discussed before (here and here, among others), I do a fair bit of research work in addition to and in support of my teaching, much of which takes the form of conference presentations. When discussing course calendars, I make note of when I will be away for conference work, and I comment (I well remember) that conference travel is nice work when it can be gotten.
I am going to get to do a bit more conference travel, it seems.
I received an email today which tells me that an abstract I submitted in response to the call for papers from the 2013 International Congress on Medieval Studies has been accepted. Once again, I will be heading off to Michigan in May to give a talk about something about which I know a fair deal--and I will do so knowing more about it than I do now.
It is possible (although I make no promises in this regard) that I will use my work on the Congress paper as a model for paper development in my classes. I am not about to offer sections of it here (that would actually be a breach of etiquette, since conference research is supposed to be original and not before published), but it does offer me the opportunity to engage, directly and intimately, in the writing processes I discuss with my students once again. I will be able to reconnect with the kinds of things my students face in the assignments I offer them, and that ought to aid me in discussing things with them in what I hope will be a helpful fashion.