Start the Presses (Again)!

watsonian-cover-squareThe Spring 2017 issue of the Watsonian is currently being printed and will soon be winging its way to mailboxes around the world. Digital subscribers will receive an email including a link to download the new issue.

Our publication schedule is now two issues per year: the Spring issue in May and the Fall issue in November.

This is the last issue in many members’ subscriptions. If your membership expires on June 30th, you will not receive the Fall issue unless you renew. Not sure when you’re due for renewal? Membership dates can be found on the Members Page, and mid-year renewals (through December 2018) are available in the Shop.

If you’ve been meaning to join, it’s not too late! Membership is available for the 2017 calendar year, and you will receive both the Spring and Fall 2017 issues of the Watsonian. Don’t miss out on the art, essays, fiction, and puzzles that make up each issue of our excellent journal!


I’m happy to announce that we now have a Shop available for anyone to purchase new membership, renewals, publications, and other items from the John H Watson Society. Simply click the “Shop” text on the upper right of the web page and feel free to browse through for anything you wish to purchase.

I wish to thank Selena for all of her hard work in putting this new feature on the website together.

For those of you who make a purchase on Paypal, please do not be alarmed by the Merchant account being under Don Libey’s name. The account is now handled by his partner and our treasurer, Asta, so we are safely handling your orders. The reason it is still in his name is simply because it is very difficult to have that information changed. If you have any further questions or suggestions about the new Shop site, please direct them to both me and Beth Gallego (JHWS Selena). We will help in any way possible.

I hope you will enjoy the new Shop! This is a wonderful time to renew membership (if it is time for you to renew) or to simply pick up previous publications that you don’t have in your library yet.

Important Change in Membership Categories

The Society has listened to its members and is making an important change to the membership categories.

The Society will no longer have two categories of Members: Charter and Founding, and Loyal Members.  Forthwith, we will have only Monikered Members.  Founding and Charter Members will still be recognized as such, but all present and new Members to the Society will have equal membership, including the conferring upon them of a bull pup name, or ‘moniker,’ the name by which Members refer to each other.

This is retroactive to January 1, 2014 and all Members who have joined since that date and who were formerly Loyal Members are now Monikered Members.  You will receive your Society bull pup moniker as soon as the Chair convenes the ancient, mystical and arcane process for their selection, a process that involves profound cogitation, rumination, partial levitation, and moderate bibulation. The result, of course, is the unique bull pup moniker for each Member. The Chair neither professes to understand nor seeks to influence the mystical process; it is all done through the wisdom of the Ethers.

Therefore, in an act of equality and inclusiveness, the Society seeks to simplify membership and to recognize only one category of membership once for all:  Member.

Musings From Outside the Doctor’s Consulting Room

Buttons has had time recently to sit upon his stool outside the good Doctor’s consulting room and just think a bit. A few things come to mind and perhaps members will feel free to comment:

What are we doing right as a Society and what are we doing wrong? Or, perhaps, it is better to ask: What could we do better or more of in order to serve our members to stimulate more participation and momentum?

We have more members submitting papers and articles than perhaps other print journals in the Sherlockian world, and that is an amazing thing in this world of “digital everything.”  How do we take that positive fact and build upon it?  How do we encourage articles and papers from young student Watsonians?

We have a core group of unbeatable Quiz Mavens who participate every week. And we have equal interest in the annual Treasure Hunt. But, are we creating quizzes that stimulate the imagination and further our interest in the Canon?  How do we expand the participation to more members and non-members alike?

Our email communications met with disaster when our last member-wide email sent out caused half the members to accidently “unsubscribe.”  In order to gain better control, we will need to use a better email service provider, but that is costly.  If Buttons sent each member a personal email every other month, it would take about 150 hours a year to do so. An email every now and then that covers important information–sent to all members at one time–is needed.  Not everyone looks at the website every day or two, but an email once a month might be welcomed. Thoughts?

And a last thought concerns membership. You will read more about this in the forthcoming issue of The Watsonian, but the fact is we need to recruit about 40% new members every year to remain at a size where we can afford to continue doing the things we are doing (journals, monographs, writing prizes, International Treasure Hunt, comprehensive website, postage, etc.).  As always, the best ideas come from the members of any organization, so feel free to comment with your ideas and observations.

Thanks. Now, it is just time for a pie . . . a pint or two overage last evening.


On this day on which our separation from England is commemorated, it is
appropriate to note that, thanks to your interest, untiring efforts and kind referrals, fifty Watsonians now number themselves as members of The John H Watson Society . . . and that is fifty in only eighty-four days.

It is a Veritable Festival of Watsonia and Anglophilia!

Best regards

Buttons (who is having a hot dog instead of a meat pie)

Chair Confers Bull Pup Monikers to Members

After weeks of great deliberations, deep Canonical studies, and other arcane and mystical consultations held within the ethers, the Founding Chair of The John H Watson Society, Prof. Don Yates, has conferred upon all members their “Bull Pup” monikers. Each members is given a bull pup moniker in order to keep green forever Dr Watson’s companionship of a bull pup, as yet unnamed, as related in A Study In Scarlet.

With this historic and weighty responsibility successfully concluded, the Membership Director has caused Membership Certificates to be engrossed with the proper monikers, authenticated by the Chair, and dispatched via the morning post to all members forthwith.

Members will find their Society monikers in quotes next their names in the Society listings found on the Membership Information and the Society and Editorial Board pages of the website.

Charter and Student Memberships Established

The John H Watson Society announced the creation of Charter Memberships to be given through December 31, 2013.

Also announced are Student Memberships to be given at no cost to full-time or part-time students enrolled at an institution of higher learning. A reduced subscription cost for the Society’s journal will be the only charge for students.

Details for both membership categories will be found on the Society’s website on the Membership Information page.