Archive - 2017

1
Books That Bred The Peace Corps
2
Review: FROM FREEBORN TO FREETOWN AND BACK by Patrick O’Leary (Sierra Leone)
3
Write about Your Peace Corps Experience and Earn an MFA Degree
4
Write and Publish Your Memoir…A Text Book to Get You Started
5
“The Peace Corps Blew It” by Bob Criso (Nigeria)
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New books by Peace Corps writers — December 2016
7
THE FORGOTTEN FAILURES OF THE PEACE CORPS
8
Public Reports Available on the Peace Corps Official Website
9
Best of Peace Corps Prose: SO THIS IS PARIS by Kathleen Johnson Coskran (Ethiopia)
10
How To Write A Novel in 100 Days

Books That Bred The Peace Corps

During the 1950s, two impulses swept across the United States. One impulse that characterized the decade was detailed in two best-selling books of the times, the 1955 novel by Sloan Wilson, The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit, and the non-fiction The Organization Man, written by William H. Whyte and published in 1956. These books looked at the “American way of life,” how men got ahead on the job and in society. Both are bleak views of the corporate world. As an editor for Fortune magazine, Whyte was well placed to observe corporate America. It became clear to him that the American belief in the perfectibility of society was shifting from one of individual initiative to one that could be achieved at the expense of the individual. With its clear analysis of contemporary working and living arrangements, The Organization Man rapidly achieved bestseller status. The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit was one of the great publishing successes . . .

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Review: FROM FREEBORN TO FREETOWN AND BACK by Patrick O’Leary (Sierra Leone)

  From Freeborn to Freetown & Back Patrick O’Leary (Sierra Leone 1966–68) Peace Corps Writers September 2016 146 pages $14.95 (paperback), $10.00 (Kindle) Reviewed by Ruth Alliband (India 1966–68) • I read Patrick O’Leary’s Peace Corps memoir From Freeborn To Freetown & Back with special interest. Both Patrick and I were accepted into Peace Corps training in 1966. We trained at roughly the same time. I left for India in late October of 1966 after two months’ Peace Corps stateside training in Albany, NY on a chartered Air India flight. In addition to two training groups of India Volunteers on board that plane, there was a contingent of Volunteers who had trained for Tanzania. They left the Air India flight in Brussels to make connections for their flight to Africa. Patrick’s experience of being reassigned and repurposed is a variation of my own. It seems to me that the uncertainties of . . .

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Write about Your Peace Corps Experience and Earn an MFA Degree

Write about Your Peace Corps Experience and Earn an MFA Degree Have you ever wanted to tell the story of your Peace Corps experience or the stories of the people you met in your service? The Master in Fine Arts Program at National University is running a special cohort of students comprised of current or returned PCVs, employees of the National Peace Corps Association, or other members of the NPCA that have been closely involved with the Peace Corps. The Peace Corps Cohort will take three writing workshop classes together that will focus on writing about your Peace Corps experience and explore notable texts by other Peace Corps veterans. All three classes will be led by returned Peace Corps volunteer and noted author, John Coyne. The rest of the classes required to earn the MFA degree in Creative Writing will be taken with our experienced MFA faculty and our diverse . . .

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Write and Publish Your Memoir…A Text Book to Get You Started

If you are starting the new year with the resolution to write the Great Peace Corps Memoir you might take a few hours and read Lawrence F. Lihosit (Honduras 1975-77) paperback ($13.95) entitled: Peace Corps Experience: Write and Publish Your Memoir. The paperback came out in 2012 and it is up-to-date and useful, down to the simplest details for writing and self-publishing. The book is also available as a Kindle e-book for $3.99. You can reach Larry by email:  lawrenceflihosit@gmail.com if you have questions about the book. Good luck with the writing.      

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“The Peace Corps Blew It” by Bob Criso (Nigeria)

  I HAD JUST GRADUATED from college in January 1966 when I picked up the New York Times and read about the bloody military coup in Nigeria. The Prime Minister and a number of other top government officials were killed. Nigeria’s budding democracy ended two weeks before I’d be leaving for Peace Corps training. Mmmm. “Do you know what you’re getting into?” my Uncle Ralph asked.   FOUR MONTHS LATER  I was settled into a teaching assignment in Ishiagu, Eastern Nigeria, and pretty content. Nice house, great students, companionable colleagues and a village culture that fascinated me. I rolled up the sleeves of my new dashiki and plunged right in — lots of palm wine, kola nuts and cultural-exchange-talk in mud homes, my Igbo vocabulary expanding in the process. When I was invited to a local wedding, I felt like I had been granted honorary citizenship. It wasn’t long before the BBC . . .

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New books by Peace Corps writers — December 2016

  To purchase any of these books from Amazon.com — Click on the book cover, the bold book title, or the publishing format you would like — and Peace Corps Worldwide, an Amazon Associate, will receive a small remittance that will help support the site and the annual Peace Corps Writers awards.   See a book you’d like to review for Peace Corps Worldwide? — Send a note to peacecorpsworldwide@gmail.com, and we’ll send you a copy along with a few instructions. •  Uprooting Terrorism Everywhere Charles Cox (Ecuador 1965-67;  APCD/Peru, Brazil 1970-75) BookLocker.com Dec 2016 217 pages $15.95 (paperback), $13.99 (Kindle) • How to Win Friends & Avoid Sacred Cows: Weird Adventures in India: Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims When the Peace Corps was New by David Macaray (India 1967-68) The Ardent Writer Press (Brownsboro, Alabama) December 2016 291 pages $29.95 (hardcover), $19.95 (paperback), $2.99 (Kindle) • Phobos & Deimos: Two Moons, Two Worlds . . .

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THE FORGOTTEN FAILURES OF THE PEACE CORPS

  I came across this article after our 50th Anniversary and saved it. With the Trump Transition Team working on a new Administration who knows what might happen to the Peace Corps, but this ‘kind of thinking’ is in the air, I’m sure, at Trump Tower. • THE FORGOTTEN FAILURES OF THE PEACE CORPS by James Bovard April 1, 2011 This article originally appeared in the April 2011 edition of Freedom Daily This is the fiftieth anniversary year for the Peace Corps. Prior to the creation of AmeriCorps, the Peace Corps took the cake as the most arrogant and overrated government program in Washington. At a time when the agency is being hailed for idealism and almost saving the world, it is worthwhile to consider its early record of debacles and defaults. A 1980s Peace Corps recruiting brochure proclaimed, “Most people talk about world problems. The Peace Corps solves them.” The . . .

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Public Reports Available on the Peace Corps Official Website

As the transfer of power from a Democratic administration to that of a Republican administration looms, it may be very important to be able to review the Public Reports from Peace Corps.  If there is a Transition Report, I can not find it.  (I have made a FOIA request, but I suspect it will months before I get a response.)  These reports are the public summaries of Peace Corps work and also that of the Peace Corps Office of the Inspector General.  They may or may not be factors as the new administration directs policy for the Peace Corps.  The best way to scan all the Peace Corps Reports is to go to peacecorps.gov, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on Open Gov and Inspector General.  Here are titles and links to those documents I think may be the most pertinent. Peace Corps Reports: peacecorps.gov Strategic Plan . . .

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Best of Peace Corps Prose: SO THIS IS PARIS by Kathleen Johnson Coskran (Ethiopia)

This is a true story. [I say that because I keep getting emails from friends asking, “did you make that up Coyne?] So, again. This is a true story. It was written by Kathleen Johnson Coskran (Ethiopia 1965-67). She taught first in Addis Ababa and later in a small town in the south. She wrote this essay when Marian Beil and I published in 1994 in our first newsletter, RPCV Writers & Readers. It is entitled, “So This Is Paris.” Later I would publish it in a collection I edited for the Peace Corps titled, Peace Corps: The Great Adventure. Kathy has continued to write and continued to win awards for her fiction and non-fiction. I am posting it now for all the readers who might have missed it in previous publications. And for everyone else, a chance to re-read it, and marvel as what a fine writer Kathy is, one of many . . .

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How To Write A Novel in 100 Days

  ANNOUNCEMENT FOR JOHN COYNE’S SKILLSHARE CLASS I want to mention that I’ve recorded a video class at Skillshare.com entitled How To Write A Novel in 100 Days. The class is about one hour long broken into 10 short videos. You can check out the site free and see if you want to take the class. The class is based on my book How To Write A Novel In 100 Days. Skillshare is a fascinating site. You might want to take other classes, or teach a course yourself. But if you are thinking of writing a novel-or know someone who might be interested–go to Skillshare and check out my course. You can do it for free, but you do have to look at my face and hear what I have to say. Well, nothing is totally without hardship. Thanks. Here is a link for free enrollment into the class: http://skl.sh/1EvgvdC It . . .

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