Rateliff relocated to Wisconsin in 1981 in order to study original Tolkien manuscripts at Marquette University. Rateliff is an expert in Tolkien studies, and he earned a PhD in 20th-century British literature from Marquette University.
"Early Versions of Farmer Giles of Ham" in Leaves from the Tree: J. R. R. Tolkien's Shorter Fiction, The Tolkien Society (1991)
"Rhetorical Strategies in Charles William's Prose Play." in The Rhetoric of Vision: Essays on Charles Williams edited by Charles A. Huttar and Peter J. Schakel (1996)
"The Lost Road, The Dark Tower, and The Notion Club Papers: Tolkien and Lewis's Time Travel Triad." in Tolkien's Legendarium: Essays on The History of Middle-earth edited by Verlyn Flieger and Carl F. Hostetter (2000)