Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Oh, well...

I have known for sometime that I would not be attending SBL this year in New Orleans. Financial constraints have played the biggest part, and not knowing when, or how, I will be getting ready for the PhD thing is another.

I think what I will miss the most is hanging out with friends. Mike Bird, John Byron, Nijay Gupta and others have always made SBL a blast, especially out of the conference setting.

For anyone going their first time, I caution a couple of things. First, set a budget on book buying before you leave. Don't exceed it! I'll never forget my first SBL being charged on the flight home for excessive weight on my luggage (75lbs, yikes!). Secondly, do not spend all of your time in the conferences. Your brain, even the brightest of bulbs will turn to mush by exerting so much energy in just paying attention. You are likely to retain almost nothing about what you've heard and that is a pity. Be selective! Your best times will be at the book stalls, or at meal time chatting with friends. So make social time a priority. I always set aside one day for sightseeing or doing something non-conference related. You don't know if you will swing by this way again so take full advantage of your time there.

Well, that's it for now...Have fun!


Anonymous said...

I have wanted to attend but distance always seem to be the problem, plus lack of money.
Do they have next years location already scheduled?

Matthew D. Montonini said...


Hello. Next year's location will be Atlanta, GA, and the year after that will be in San Francisco.

I would encourage you to go at least once. It is a great way to network and meet some of the folks that you read.

Allan R. Bevere said...


Good advice for first-time SBLers.

Hopfully, next year you will be able to get to Atlanta and join us.