Beginning my Life’s Work

My dear readers! I have a very exciting announcement. At long last, after fourteen years, I have begun the project for which I have been preparing myself all my life.

I’m working on The Annotated Arthuriad of Charles Williams. That’s right! Ever since CW published The Region of the Summer Stars in 1944–or since Taliessin through Logres in 1938–or arguably even since Heroes and Kings in 1930, we’ve need an annotated edition of his dense and difficult poetry. I’ve wanted to create it since 2009. But a few important things had to happen first.

I had to read most of CW’s oeuvre.
I had to learn a bit about Arthuriana (which turned out to include editing The Inklings and King Arthur).
I had to learn a bit about modern occultism (which turned out to involve getting a PhD!)
…and then, I had to meet collaborators with whom I could work and who would keep me accountable.

That’s right! I’m delighted that this is not a solo project, but instead a joint effort with Dr. Carla Arnell of Lake Forest College in Illinois and one of her students, Sam Bickersteth. Among the three of us, we bring interests and expertise in literature, theology, and the occult, so we should be able to cover everything. We’ve got a plan laid out to include material from Williams’s prose explications, Lewis’s commentary, notes by Anne Ridler and others from among CW’s “disciples,” an MA thesis that attempted a similar project, and more. We’ll consult with various CW scholars on dubious points. We’ll make this as much of a community project as possible, so stay tuned for ways you can help out!

Meanwhile, there is much to be done. We have to work on getting the necessary permissions from the appropriate copyright holders of the texts we’d like to use. We have to decide what route we want to use for publication, then formally propose the project. We need to synchronize our various documents and annotation methods to come up with something relatively streamlined and definitely workable. Oh, and we have to carve out time for this enormous task from our day jobs, teaching, editing, taking courses, writing other papers and books and stories and poems, serving on committees, running a Press, running a Department, running on the soccer field, and much, much more. We crave your patience and support!

For practical purposes, we’ll probably start with just Taliessin Through Logres and see how that turns out. If it goes well, then of course we’d love to continue with The Region of the Summer Stars, and then perhaps one day go on to include the Arthurian poems from Heroes and Kings as well as the Advent of Galahad/Jupiter over Carbonek material. Wouldn’t a big, fat, complete Annotated Arthuriad be a thing of beauty and a joy forever?

Please stay tuned. I hope to update you now and then. I’m sorry I haven’t been blogging more regularly, but it’s a particularly full (and in many ways difficult) season of life. I find I’m still adjusting to the Editor-in-Chief position, living in a new community, setting up a homestead, taking care of my ailing parents, and much more.

Thank you for your support, dear readers!

About Sørina Higgins

Sørina Higgins is Editor-in-Chief of the Signum University Press. She holds a Ph.D. in English from Baylor University. Dr. Higgins is currently co-editing a volume on the ethical turn in speculative fiction with Dr. Brenton Dickieson and previously edited an academic essay collection entitled The Inklings and King Arthur. She is also the author of the blog The Oddest Inkling, devoted to a systematic study of Charles Williams’ works. As a creative writer, Sørina has a volume of short stories, A Handful of Hazelnuts, forthcoming from Signum’s own press. Outside of academia, Sørina enjoys practicing yoga, playing with her cats, cooking, baking, podcasting, gardening, dancing, and ranting about the state of the world.
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12 Responses to Beginning my Life’s Work

  1. screwtape316 says:

    This is exciting, welcome news! Eager to hear more…

    Liked by 2 people

  2. This will indeed be a great labour and a delight for all those who love Williams and the Arthurian legends. May I point out that the volume edited by myself and Grevel Lindop, published by Apocryphile Press in 2021, is currently the most comprehensive and corrected collection of Williams’ Arthurian work, with an essay by myself as an arthurian expert with a lifetime of study and a rich introduction by Grevel Lindop, CWs biographer. I hope this may be of some value to your work and I would always be happy to confer on details of the poetry and Arthurian literature.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Very cool, excellent news!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. joviator says:

    Few authors would benefit more from annotation. Good luck!

    Liked by 2 people

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  6. chastmastr says:



  7. David Llewellyn Dodds says:

    An awesome undertaking, wisely approached! Good wishes for it, and I look forward to the updates!


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  9. Steph says:

    An annotated edition of CW’s Arthurian poems is so overdue, so this news is very exciting!! Congratulations!!! And I look forward to hearing updates and more about how to help!


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