I took some of BPG's advice. I broke out three paragraphs from my cover letter, and created a free-standing add-on to my CV called "Current Research Projects & Teaching Interests". As the latter part of that title suggests, I added a fourth paragraph on my teaching interests which begins:
While research is central to the work I do, so is teaching. I believe the two are complementary enterprises, enriching and strengthening each other. As a scholar, I find teaching demands I keep practical matters and relevance in the forefront of my inquiries. As a teacher, research provides me incomparable opportunities to test my own and other's theories, and to enliven my lectures with points of immediate and direct comparison to sometimes remote topics under discussion. Courses I am prepared to teach include:...I'm doing all I can, that's about all I can say. I can't make myself any less of a researcher. It's too much of my identity. But I can work hard to allay any concerns committee's might have regarding whether I'm a good or enthusiastic teacher as well. All I need is a few more open doors. I blew it the past couple years. I've had a total of four calls, resulting in two campus interviews. But I didn't make the cut after those campus visits. The first one was real close I know, as I think I've blogged before, since at least two of my recommenders spent about an hour each on the phone with the committee after my visit. But, as the old saying goes: almost only counts in horseshoes and hand-grenades.
One thing that Big Presence Guy asked at the conference was whether or not I had been short-listed anywhere. Yes, I have. Well, that's a good sign. That's the rubric that tells you someone is hireable. That's a good thing for me to keep in mind. I'm not sure of the corollary though. If you haven't been shortlisted, does that necessarily mean you won't make the cut? It seems so arbitrary at times. But, for those of us grasping for straws... any stray blade of grass for hope will do.
I'm feeling pretty good about this job season right now. There are quite a few postings that are more up my alley than last year seemed to offer. In any case, I'm committed to at least one more season of applications. I'm trying to find that right tone, the right voice to speak for me in that silent shuffle of papers that cross a committee member's desk.
But I'm not holding my breath. As of tomorrow or Wednesday, I'll have that office of my own. Discovered today however that setting up internet would cost me quite a bit more than I had bargained for (twice what I had been quoted last week, before signing a lease). Too much for my blood at this moment. I'll hope that someone in the building has an unsecured wireless, or that I can find a T-Mobile Hotspot somewhere near by. Worst case, I'll just get used to getting my internet fix at home in the mornings before heading out, or in the afternoons after returning. I'm excited about the prospects, even though I'm not yet sure how I'll use the office. One thing's for certain, I've got a darn good reason to become more productive, and I plan to use it.