Tag Archives: publication

Dopefiend Forthcoming from Central Recovery Press in October 2011!

Four Views of a Book Press

I signed a contract with a book publisher!

Dopefiend* is forthcoming from Central Recovery Press in October 2011. I am so excited and pleased.

Central Recovery Press first contacted me in early spring. I signed in late September. In-between was much book publishing drama. It’s nothing like what I imagined. I say that, but I am no longer even sure what I imagined. I just know I agonized over everything.

You always read about these wonderfully talented writers who were poor business people and ended up dying penniless and lonely in some terrible place. I was determined not to let that happen to me. I asked about print runs, wholesale and retail prices, and means of distribution, but the person I worked with—a kind soul from upstate NY named Tom Woll—liked to answer these type questions in general terms. I could never tell if he thought I was somewhat slow or if he was  just trying to protect me from myself.

Probably a little of both.

In the end, I had to reach out to all my writer friends and acquaintances for help. That’s what really turned the tide and helped me understand what was going on. It’s one thing to see yourself as a promising new voice. No matter how many rejections come, you’re always able to shrug it off. Writers get rejected. This is just what we do. In a sense, we’re manufacturing rejection. But being asked to deliver on a vivid and engaging manuscript is another story altogether. I didn’t see it right off, but now I realize I was overwhelmed, intimidated, and mabye even a little frightened.

Fortunately I had a host of writers and friends to rely on for everything from sanity checks to encouragement. Much thanks to: William Bradley, Dinty Moore, Matt Briggs, Rachael Brownell, Diane Diekman, Karna Converse, Carter Jefferson, Grace Skibicki, William Pitt Root, Tom Catton, Ira Sukrungruang, and I am sure a few others who I am forgetting as I write this.

And many thanks to Holly—a wonderfully talented writer in her own right, and my best reader and favorite critic—for putting up with me all summer long and for cleaning out some room in the house where I can write. I realize that I have been offered a wonderful opportunity, one that not many writers get.

Now my job is to write the best book I can produce.

*Dopefiend is the tentative title. I agreed to come up with a new title, but I haven’t found anything I like just yet.

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Inching Toward Publication

07-05-2005 (137)

Some small success to report on the publishing front.

One of my stories has been selected as a finalist for an anthology about fathers, My Dad is My Hero (Adams Press, Spring 2009). My story is one of 53 selected, but only 50 will be published. I’ll find out in July or August if I made the cut. Keep your fingers crossed, people.

The story I submitted is an excerpt from a current post on the blog (the contract I signed allows me to continue to publish it here, even if it’s selected). And that post is actually an excerpt from a longer chapter in my memoir. It’s ironic that the the anthology is about heroic fathers: the full chapter from the memoir offers a somewhat different sensibility about Dad, or at least it juxtaposes a heroic Dad against a more needy Dad. Despite this irony, Dad still makes out pretty good in my memory (as he does in my book).

If you’re wondering (especially you people at home), my childhood memoir isn’t meant as an attack on Dad or anyone else. The more I write, the more I learn about the story, but from what I can tell right now it’s learning to appreciate your own talents and sensibilities, instead of trying to be someone you’re not.

If you want a memoir that’s an attack on fatherhood, read Augusten Burroughs’s Wolf at the Table. I’m only 100 pages in, but Mr. Burroughs is so bitter with his father, it’s hard for me to read.

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