Breaking News: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Estate Sued by Scholar

Written by Ashley Robinson on . Posted in News Feed, Resources

Les Klinger credit Brian Braff

According to this article published by, famed Sherlockian and literary scholar Leslie S. Klinger has filed suit against the Conan Doyle estate, claiming that the Holmsian characters should be freely licensed within the public domain.  Klinger has published numerous anthologies on Holmes with little issue; however, the Conan Doyle estate has threatened injunction against Klinger if he doesn’t pony up licensing fees for his next book, In The Company of Sherlock Holmes.  Christopher Shultz of explains:

“Klinger alleges that estate representatives contacted his publisher Pegasus Books and demanded payment for an upcoming anthology titled In The Company of Sherlock Holmes. If no licensing fee was paid, the estate threatened to dissuade major distributors from carrying the book. Klinger hopes to convince the court to ‘put a permanent stop to this kind of bullying.'”

Klinger admits he takes no issue with the copyrighted works owned by the estate–Conan Doyle’s heirs own the rights to at least 10 of the Holmes stories.  What he does mind, however, is what he sees as “bullying.”  In other words, Klinger believes that the estate is overusing its power in an attempt to profit.

What do you think?  Should the Conan Doyle estate back off?  Or is Klinger in the right?  Whatever your position, you can find more information about the lawsuit on the Free Sherlock! blog.

A Little Laugh: Kate Beaton’s Watson

Written by Ashley Robinson on . Posted in News Feed


We’ve talked about how Watson is either a) a doddering fool or b) a manly brawler in Sherlock Holmes adaptations.  Acclaimed web cartoonist Kate Beaton deals with this in her Holmesian comics.  You can find the full size comic here, but you should definitely check out her entire archive.  It’s hilarious!

Resource: Citing eBooks

Written by Ashley Robinson on . Posted in News Feed, Resources


Throughout the semester, we’ll be reading a number of digital texts.  Those can be a little tricky to cite, but never fear!  Below are resources that will help you cite your eBooks in MLA format.

1.  Modern Language Association: this site is particularly helpful since it’s information straight from the horse’s mouth.  It does help if you have an MLA style guide handy, too.

2.  University of Maryland University College:  these tips are short and sweet.  They don’t cover every type of electronic publication, but you’ll get the gist.

A Little Laugh: A Study in Polish

Written by Ashley Robinson on . Posted in News Feed




We all know that Sherlock himself is a connoisseur of style–well, when it comes to disguises, anyway.  I wonder if he would approve of these Holmes-inspired nail polishes (of which the names are especially clever).  Surely you could woo any Valentine–even Holmes himself–with these.

Note: only for the fanciest of consulting detectives.


(Thanks for pointing these out, Deanna.)

Wednesday’s Homework: Grading Papers

Written by Ashley Robinson on . Posted in Assignments, News Feed

For Wednesday, you’ll be charged with grading two student papers.  I’ve combined both papers into one .pdf document, which you can download by clicking here.

For class, please do the following:

1.  Read through both papers.

2.  Edit the papers as you would if you were assigning the grade.  As you read, make sure to mark the papers’ strengths and weaknesses.  Keep in mind that even bad papers do some things right, and that good papers can have failings.  Make sure to bring your edited copies to class with you on Wednesday.

3.  Assign a grade to each paper.  To do so, download a copy of my grading rubric.  This is the exact rubric I’ll be using to evaluate your first paper, too.  Read it carefully and, using the rubric as a guideline, give a final mark to each paper.