Franz Kafka

But questions that don’t answer themselves at the very moment of their asking are never answered

The following questions are some of the more common things visitors ask about Das Schloss. If you’d like to know more about and the Libyrinth, feel free to visit the Site Information page, accessible from the button in the upper right corner.

Who runs this site?
This site is maintained by two collaborators: Jeff Nowak and Allen B. Ruch. Jeff Nowak is the site editor; he is the author of most of the information about Kafka located on Das Schloss. He also makes sure the content stays current, and is the one who can best answer any questions pertaining to Kafka or his work. Allen Ruch – or “The Great Quail,” as he inexplicably calls his online persona – is the Editorial Director of The Modern Word’s Libyrinth, to which Das Schloss belongs. He is responsible for laying out and maintaining the technical side of the site, though he is also a contributing author as well.

So who wrote which sections?
At the bottom of each page you’ll see a “sig file,” or names and a date. If a page was written solely by Jeff or Allen, his name alone will grace the page. If it is a collaboration, both names will appear, with the principal writer listed first. On pages with several individually-written pieces, the author will be marked as (JN) or (ABR).

Does anyone there speak German?
Although Allen has a limited knowledge of German, both site authors are familiar with Kafka primarily through various translations. Any assistance with German language issues is always appreciated!

Do you answer all your email?
Yes. We try to answer all of the letters that people send us; but it usually takes a few days. Don’t let this discourage you from dropping us a note; we place a tremendous value on feedback of any sort, especially corrections, suggestions, and shameless flattery. Just understand that it may take a bit of time for us to reply. If it is very important and/or time sensitive, such as a request for permission to use Das Schloss materials for an upcoming project, or a request to mail us a large contribution of chocolate or money, please write IMPORTANT in capital letters in the subject line. We will try to get to it immediately.

Do you accept submissions?
Absolutely! Das Schloss is meant to be a community effort, and we gladly accept quality submissions such as reviews, papers, essays, or Kafka-related projects. Just send us an email.

How do I cite this Web site on a report?
That may very well depend on your instructor. Usually it is appropriate to give the site name – Das Schloss – with the URL, a date, and our names: Jeff Nowak & Allen B. Ruch. You may want to cite an individual page, in which case the URL is appropriate.

Can you offer me help on a school project or a research paper?
We often get asked to provide facts, ideas, topics, and other assistance on a research papers, and occasionally someone asks if we can email them some additional material on Kafka. As much as we would like to, we simply do not have the time to offer individualized help on research papers. All the information we have we eventually place online at an appropriate location, and we try to feature various books of criticism and links to other sites that may be of assistance to students.

Can you send me extra criticism or information about Kafka or his work?
No – quite simply, because if you don’t see it on the site, we don’t have it. We put everything we can online; sometimes it may take awhile, but it’ll get there.

Boy, you guys sound grumpy. Do you ever answer any questions?
Sure! As a matter of fact, we enjoy some of the more offbeat questions. We just won’t answer the kind of questions that can very easily be answered by the site itself, a nearby encyclopedia, or a quick search on Google. Again, we’re not trying to be rude, we just need to conserve our time.

The links on your pages sure do have long, funny names! Are those quotes from Kafka’s works?
Yes. One of the joys of creating this site is finding quotes that set off its different subsections – We try to select quotes with a certain degree of appropriateness or irony; but occasionally we just choose one because we like the sound of it.

Who does the graphics?
With the exception of the buttons and general framework, The Quail does all the banner images – except, of course, for the untouched photographs and any pictures of bookcovers and such. They are generally created using Adobe Photoshop and a Macintosh computer, after lots and lots of coffee and strange music.

–Allen B. Ruch
& Jeff Nowak
21 December 2003

These letters do nothing but cause anguish, and if they don’t cause any anguish it’s even worse – Send email to Das Schloss’ Jeff Nowak and the Great Quail – comments, suggestions, corrections, criticisms, submissions . . . all are welcome!

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