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The Database

February 17, 2018

Amid these entries you may occasionally find references to a database. Yes, these individual and small group postings are based on a larger project to identify as many Akron-Auditorium churches as possible in the United States, Canada, and, frankly, anywhere in the English-speaking world. Not incidentally, I have yet to find anything even remotely A-A in either Australia or New Zealand—odd, because I’d have anticipated (but not necessarily expected) finding them anywhere there are Methodists.

I post this today for two reasons: First, to celebrate having recently gone over the 4,500 mark. Yes, it is likely that not all of these examples will prove to have been A-A, but it’s a better than even bet they are. Second, given the extent of material accumulating in files and piles—more of the latter, unfortunately—I’ve hired a research assistant to help organize the bulk of this material and begin to fill in the gaps (dates, current status, architect, type). That will entail a good deal of on-line sleuthing, which is a tough thing for me to assign someone else; there are just too many goodies one encounters serendipitously, while searching for something completely different, and I shall miss that chance encounter with the “shiny things” that divert me from the task at hand.

Another of our mid-range goals is finding a publisher, or at least narrowing the list of possibilities; academic publishing is a cut-throat prospect these days. I must confess having had a “prospectus” in hand for some time, years in fact. The format of a prospectus varies among publishers but generally falls into this pattern:

  • What is the subject of the book you hope to publish?
  • Why are you the most appropriate author to undertake this book?
  • Who will purchase the book? (i.e., what will be its marketing strategy?)
  • What is the competition? Are there other books on this or other related topics?
  • How will the book be structured? What is the “apparatus” —number of words; photographs; maps, drawings, etc.?

If you can address these, you’re on the path to publication.

So another objective will be writing an actual chapter or two to send along with this other information. At seventy-three, I can’t afford to let this opportunity slip by and avoid all my research materials make their way to the sanitary landfill.

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One Comment
  1. timothy eckersley permalink

    Dear Mr Ramsay:
    So glad to hear that you are inching towards publication – it you remember I am itching to understand your categorization system.
    As you say, you cannot allow all your materials to go for nothing.
    It seems as though you have enough now!
    Best regards, Timothy Eckersley

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