My previous (and first) editor’s note opened with a mild joke about how endless the opening month or so of 2020 had seemed. Simpler times: “the beforetime,” as we all seem to have spontaneously agreed to call it.
The onset of the COVID-19-era has not made putting out a journal any easier: pretty much everything we’ve worked on from the first half of this year has been, or still is, late. The not-so-new still-not-normal has really brought to the fore that in important ways there is no “the journal”: it’s just people. That includes not only the editorial staff, but also, for example, many anonymous and uncompensated referees. For much of the past few months, the daily business of asking them to read articles and to remind them of past deadlines (“gently,” as we say in the profession) has often felt absurd if not worse. And yet the submissions kept coming in—at a faster rate than normal, in fact.