Jay Ruud is a retired professor of English at the University of Central Arkansas, now devoting much of his time to fiction writing. He has committed to retelling the traditional legend of King Arthur for modern readers as a series of Merlin Mysteries and has published five books in that series to date: Fatal Feast, The Knight’s Riddle, The Bleak and Empty Sea, Lost in theQuagmire, and most recently The Knight of the Cart. The final volume in the series, To the Great Deep, is due to be published in the fall of 2020. He’s also written scholarly books, including an Encyclopediaof Medieval Literature(2006), A Critical Companion to Dante(2008), and A Critical Companionto Tolkien(2011), as well as the first full-length study of Chaucer’s short poems, “Many a Song and Many a Leccherous Lay”: Tradition and Individuality in Chaucer Lyric Poetry (1992), a book that was reissued by Routledge in October 2019 after 27 years. He taught at UCA and chaired the English department for 13 years, prior to which he was Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota. He has a Ph.D. in Medieval Literature from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and is married to the thoroughly awesome poet and novelist Stacey Margaret Jones. He has as many spectacular dogs as grandchildren (four) and will fight you if you will not admit that modern literature begins in 1485.