3 min read

An Editor's Tale: Cheryl Meets Doug

Cheryl E. Ball discusses meeting Doug Eyman for the first time at the 1999 Conference on College Composition and Communication in Atlanta, GA, where he encourages her to submit her work to Kairos. Within two years, she would become a section editor for the journal.
Blue background with white Kairos logo and the words History of Kairos: The Trajectory of Cheryl and Doug's First Meeting
History of Kairos: The Trajectory of Cheryl and Doug's First Meeting

Cheryl Ball tells the story of meeting Doug Eyman for the first time, and how she became involved in Kairos. 


Summary Keywords: doug, kairos, editors, work, dickie, faculty member, tech, michigan, poncho, introduced, editing, hypertext, dissertation advisor, special interest group, program, started, ended, people, intern, published

Speakers: Cheryl Ball, Doug Eyman

Cheryl Ball: I decided to go to CCCCs. And I don't think I presented that first year -- that was beyond my scope of -- I hadn't been to any conferences at that point. So the first thing that I do is look through the program, see that there's a special interest group for graduate students. And I'm like, Oh, I'll go network, right? But yeah, I show up to this group. And there's like four people in this giant, you know, CCCC's session room is sitting in a little tiny, tiny ring of chairs, right. And I make my way over and I sit down. And there's this guy wearing a poncho. And I'm like, okay, that's weird. It's got a ponytail. It's Doug. He will later inform me repeatedly that it wasn't a poncho. It was a what?

Doug Eyman: A sarape.

Cheryl Ball: A sarape? Yeah. But he was organizing this group. And I have no idea, Doug, who else was in that room? At like, at the moment, because I knew no one. But I remember right? I obviously remember you. And you were you were going around introducing ourselves, oh, I'm working on some electronic literature stuff. And Doug was like, wait, what? We're getting ready to run a special issue in Kairos on electronic literature, you should submit your work. And I was like, oh, okay, that sounds cool. Like I just barely heard of Kairos before showing up and meeting Doug. So Doug is literally the first person in the entire field, outside of the faculty members that I've said, I were teaching me at VCU who I met, like, talk about serendipity.

But we walk out of there and we walk into like the foyer where everybody is, and like, not everybody, like hundreds of people are standing out there. And Doug walks me up to these two men who are standing there, and I may be misremembering this, but But Doug introduces me to James Inman, who is one of the co-editors with him at Kairos. And Dickie Selfe. And I don't have any idea who these guys are, right? But Doug says, Oh, this is Dickie, he's on the editorial board, he'll probably review your work. So that was my, my first introduction to Kairos was actually as an author and meeting Doug as the first person, that field that I meet, who then immediately introduced me to other people. And that just networked out from there. And then I get published, I went back home, I redid my whole hypertext in FrontPage. I got that published in the fall 1999 issue.

And then the fall of 2000, I started my Ph. D. program at Michigan Tech, with Cindy and Dickie. And with Anne Wysocki. She ended up being my dissertation advisor. And I was at Michigan Tech for all of about four months, when I saw the call for CoverWeb editors that Kairos was hiring. And I was like, I want to do this because I already had a lot of editorial experience. I was working as a as an intern at Computers and Composition at the time. And I was also interning with with CCCs because Maryland Cooper was the editor at the time and she was the faculty member at Michigan Tech. So I was doing a lot of brand new entry level work with scholarly, scholarly publishing. But I had a lot of history with with doing different kinds of publishing and editing of other genres. And I passed and I was like, I'm gonna apply to this like this. Sounds cool. And that was the spring of 2001. And I ended up getting getting hired to be one of the CoverWeb co-editors, with this woman, Beth Hewett. So Beth and I started co editing the CoverWeb section in that spring and immediately started rolling out some special issue ideas. And so yeah, I have been with the journal since 2001, and also count it as my first academic publication from 1999.