SansBlogue  
Saturday, May 03, 2008
  Commentaries and Open Publication
Alan Lenzi has a couple of provocative posts, in the more recent he discusses why biblical scholars write commentaries (he counted and Dove list over 80 on Job alone):
  1. Commentary writing appeals to our strengths and training...
  2. Commentary writing is a recognized genre within the guild ... All the great scholars write commentaries...
  3. Commentary writing is relatively straight-forward...
  4. Commentary writing can be an act of piety...
  5. Commentaries sell so publishers keep asking scholars to write them...
  6. Commentary writing reflects and contributes to advances in the field, presenting the latest research in a convenient location...
Just a few days earlier he wrote about The Open Access Monograph Series That Almost Was and dropped frustrating hints about a newer and better project. So, before he (or someone else) announces that project, I'll reiterate a call for contributors. Any established scholar who wants to write a commentary on a biblical book, and who is interested in getting your work seen and used more widely than print can achieve, take a look at the Hypertext Bible Commentary project, and then contact me for more details.

The Amos "volume" has already (in its peer reviewed stable form) been consulted by thousands of readers each month since its publication in late 2005. The changeable experimental version also gets a huge number of visitors.

If you don't want to spend the time to write a commentary, or you are not yet an "established" scholar then, offer a dictionary article these too will get larger than print readership, these also will be peer reviewed before publication, and so should "count" as publications, but most of all you will contribute to making solid information available to everyone who is interested. And unlike most scholarly writing your article will get read and considered and used!

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