Category Archives: The Chronicle of Higher Education

Ms. Mentor strikes again

July 3, 2016 – chronicle.com

Academic Novels for Real People. So much for the classics; time to break open the juicy stuff.

“Question (from ‘Hegelia’): All right, I’ve read some of the books on last month’s list of classic academic novels, filled with profs performing intellectually in their native habitats. But where are the juicy academic novels?

Answer: That depends on what you mean by ‘juicy.’ For some readers of academic novels, the scholarly in-jokes are the whole point of the genre. These are the sort of readers who chortle about the literary-theory tidbits in John L’Heureux’s The Handmaid of Desire, or claim to know the real-life inspiration for the pushy promoter of ‘Diana Studies’ in Jennifer Vandever’s The Bronte Project.”

Ms. Mentor’s Summer Reading List

June 5, 2016 – chronicle.com

Reading the Classics of Academic Literature. Five lofty texts about professors and learning for your summer book list

 

Ms. Mentor’s New Batch of Recommendations

June 21, 2015 – The Chronicle of Higher Education

Ms. Mentor’s Annual Guide to Academic Novels by Ms. Mentor

Winner: Julie Schumacher’s Dear Committee Members

This Year’s Crop of Academic Novel Nominees

Allen, Shirley S. Academic Body
Barbour, John D. Renunciation: A Novel
Buckner, Bailey. The Well-Meaning Professor: A Novel
Cochran, Les. Costly Affair: Loves, Lies, and Liaisons
Crescent, Tara. The Professor’s Pet (A BDSM Romance Novel)
Curzon, Daniel. Among the Carnivores
Diehl, Lesley A. Murder Is Academic
Dolan, Lian. Elizabeth the First Wife
Edwards, Ruth Dudley. Murdering Americans
Fournet, Stephanie. Fall Semester
Games, Steve. The Naked Professor
Gold, Nora. Fields of Exile
Grossack, Victoria. Academic Assassination
Harrington, Rebecca. Penelope
Houck, C.K. The University
Johns, Isabella. My Hot Teacher (Volume 5)
Karlof, Duronimus. Critical Mass
Kirilenko, Shelley. ABD: An Academic Mystery
Krinsky, Natalie. Chloe Does Yale: A Novel
Lipsyte, Sam. The Ask: A Novel
Lukes, Steven. The Curious Enlightenment of Professor Caritat
Markovic, Matthew. Book Thieves: a ‘college mystery’ novel
Martin, Jason. Voluptua: a novel
Meeks, Brian D. Underwood, Scotch, and Wry
Meeks, Christopher. Love at Absolute Zero
Noble, Robert C. Deception by Design: A Novel of Misconduct in Medical Research
Perkins, Ronald. Tenure to Die For: An Ivory Tower Murder Mystery
Philbrick-DeBrava, Valerie. The Gathering: An Academic Novel
Rader-Day, Lori. The Black Hour
Reardon, Kathleen Kelley. Shadow Campus
Rosenthal, D.W. Purely Academic
Urban, William. Why the Dean Is Dead
White, Lowell Mick. Professed
Woodson, Jon. Endowed: a comic novel

Julie Schumacher’s Dear Committee Members

 

August 7, 2014 – Slate

Strongest Possible Endorsement by Rebecca Schuman

1“For Dear Committee Members isn’t really an academic novel, or even an academic satire (since most of its depictions of Payne University barely count as hyperbole). It’s a sincere exploration of the depths and breadths of human selfishness, and the contemporary American academy is simply the backdrop, precisely because nowhere else could Fitger’s particular sort of self-obsession be given the autonomy to both metastasize and self-immolate. So in the end, it is exactly Fitger’s selfishness that destructs, rather than his life—and although his semi-redemption may not redeem the rank carcass of academic culture that continues to fester around him, it’s more than enough to recommend this mischievous novel.”

August 13, 2014 – NPR

In A Funny New Novel, A Weary Professor Writes To ‘Dear Committee Members’ by Maureen Corrigan

 

August 17, 2014 – Macleans
August 19, 2014 – Inside Higher Ed
August 25, 2014 – Chronicle of Higher Education
An Academic Novel with a Twist by Jeffrey J. Williams
November 6, 2014 – The Independent
“But perhaps the challenge Schumacher and other writers face is that the university now is almost beyond parody.”

Ms. Mentor Recommends: How to Write a Successful Academic Novel & A Summer Reading List

1“You’ll start, naturally, with the terror of the blank screen. Never tell yourself, ‘I am going to commit an act of literature.’ That can paralyze you. Instead, try: ‘I am going to write a horrendously awful first draft.’ That’ll get you started. Setting yourself a daily writing quota is helpful. It can be time (an hour a day) or words (500 words a day). Ms. Mentor presumes you have something in mind for your academic novel. Perhaps there’s a character you want to create—a struggling adjunct, an aggrieved graduate student, a free spirit who says the-hell-with-it-all. Probably you want some kind of revenge. First let Ms. Mentor tell you what not to do in writing your masterpiece—at least if you want her to approve of your final product.”

June 2, 2014 – The Chronicle of Higher Education

Writing Academic Novels for Fun and (Little) Profit by Ms. Mentor

The (sad) life of an adjunct teacher

1“Alex Kudera’s Fight for Your Long Day is likely to provoke post-traumatic stress reactions in anyone who has been a college teacher. Unlike most academic novels that feature the first-world problems of tenured professors, Kudera’s is about Cyrus Duffleman, a depressed, saggy, almost-40 adjunct who makes, he calculates, about $10 an hour teaching courses to disengaged—and sometimes mentally ill—students at universities all over Philadelphia.”

March 25, 2013 – The Chronicle of Higher Education 

Considering Adjunct Misery. An academic novel offers an Everyman for the new American economy by William Pannapacker

https://chronicle.com/article/Considering-Adjunct-Misery/138085/

More on adjuncting:

http://chronicle.com/article/Adjunct-Loving-It/145109/?cid=cc&utm_source=cc&utm_medium=en

“Who are you in the academic novel?” Good question.

” […] I’d like to take Ms. Mentor’s idea and push it even further.  What I’m really interested in is finding out which academic novel or play—let’s not forget Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? shall we?—best portrays the life we actually live. What professor reminds you of you?

June 10, 2010 by Gina Barreca
The Chronicle of Higher Education
Who Are YOU in the Academic Novel?

http://chronicle.com/blogs/brainstorm/who-are-you-in-the-academic-novel/24697