Archive - January 2010

1
Review: Douglas Foley's The Heartland Chronicles
2
100 Days (Or Less ) Part Four:What Makes A Writer?
3
Can you name this group?
4
RPCVs Remember Kennedy At The Capital, November 21, 1988
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Review: Stephen Hirst's I Am The Grand Canyon
6
100 Day (Or Less) Part Three: Writing And Working
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100 Days (Or Less) Part Two: Who Is John Coyne?
8
How To Write A Book In 100 Days (Or Less)
9
New Novel by Paul Theroux (Malawi 1963–65)
10
Literary Agents React!

Review: Douglas Foley's The Heartland Chronicles

Reviewer Tom Hebert (Nigeria 1962-64) is a writer and policy consultant living on the Umatilla Indian Reservation outside Pendleton, Oregon. Here Tom reviews The Heartland Chronicles by Douglas Foley published by the University of  Pennsylvania Press in 1995, then again in 2005. • The Heartland Chronicles by Douglas Foley (Philippines 1962-64) University of Pennsylvania Press 1995; 2005 with Epilogue 264 pages $29.97 Reviewed by Tom Hebert (Nigeria 1962–64) Another book that really meets the Peace Corps’ Third Goal of bringing it all back home, let me here applaud Douglas Foley’s THE HEARTLAND CHRONICLES. In 1995 when Foley published the book he was an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Texas, Austin. Now he be a full professor. “A tale of Indians and whites living together in a small Iowa community,” this tidily laid out book relates how Foley got inside Iowa’s tiny but old Meskwaki  Indian culture just at the . . .

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100 Days (Or Less ) Part Four:What Makes A Writer?

Novelist Kurt Vonnegut once remarked that, “Talent is extremely common. What is rare is the willingness to endure the life of a writer. It is like making wallpaper by hand for the Sistine Chapel.” How do you know if you are a writer? Perhaps it is a single incident – one that happens early in life and shapes the writer’s sense of wonder and self-awareness. Take the case of José Saramago, the first Portuguese-language writer to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature. The son of a peasant father and an illiterate mother, brought up in a home with no books, he took almost 40 years to go from metalworker to civil servant to editor in a publishing house to newspaper editor. He was 60 before he earned recognition at home and abroad with Baltasar and Blimunda. As a child, he spent vacations with his grandparents in a village called Azinhaga. . . .

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RPCVs Remember Kennedy At The Capital, November 21, 1988

[In 1988 Tim Carroll (Nigeria 1963-65), the first Director of the National Council of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers, (now the NPCA) staged an event in Washington, D.C. that would prove to be the most newsworthy and significant reminder of the Peace Corps connection with President John F. Kennedy. It would also be, in the words of Peace Corps Director Loret Miller Ruppe (1981-89), the event that generated the most attention ever given to the agency by the American media. Named Journals of Peace by Tim Carroll, this event consisted of continual readings by RPCVs for twenty-four hours in the U.S. Capital Rotunda. The Journals of Peace began at mid-day on the 21st of November in 1988 and continued through mid-day on the 22nd ending with a memorial Mass at St. Matthews Cathedral, the site of Kennedy’s funeral. Similar, smaller, memorial services were also held in other parts of the country on this anniversary of . . .

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Review: Stephen Hirst's I Am The Grand Canyon

Reviewer  Tom Hebert is a writer and policy consultant living on the Umatilla Indian Reservation outside Pendleton, Oregon. Here he reviews  I Am The Grand Canyon: The Story of the Havasupai People which first came out in 1976, then was revised in 1985 and again in 2007. • I Am The Grand Canyon: The Story of the Havasupai People by Stephen Hirst (Liberia 1962-64) Grand Canyon Association Copyright 2006 by the Havasupai Tribe 2007 276 pages $18.95 Reviewed by Tom Hebert (Nigeria 1962–64) The last ethnographic book to be reviewed in this three-part series for you to Amazon and read is Stephen Hirst’s 2006, “I Am The Grand Canyon: The Story of the Havasupai People.” First published in 1976 and updated in 1985, this book has the ultimate jacket blurb: “This book is our Bible. We use it to teach our kids who they are.” -Fydel Jones, Havasupai. Book writers . . .

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100 Day (Or Less) Part Three: Writing And Working

I know it is not easy to write a book, not when you have a full time job, family, and other responsibilities. Most writers have had to carry on two lives while they wrote. The poet Wallace Stevens was a vice president of an insurance company and an expert on the bond market. The young T.S. Eliot was a banker. William Carlos Williams a pediatrician. Robert Frost a poultry farmer. Hart Crane packed candy in his father’s warehouse, and later wrote advertising copy. Stephen Crane was a war correspondent. Marianne Moore worked at the New York Public Library. James Dickey worked for an advertising agency. Joe Heller, author of Catch 22, worked for a magazine, selling advertising. Archibald MacLeish was Director of the Office of Facts and Figures during World War II. Stephen King was teaching high school English when he wrote Carrie. Novelist Jennifer Egan author of a novel . . .

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100 Days (Or Less) Part Two: Who Is John Coyne?

Why listen to me? That is a good question.  Here is why you should take my advice on how to write a book in 100 days. Here are some of my qualifications. I have written 25 published book, fiction, non-fiction, collections, guide books, instructional books. I have written award winning and New York Times Best Seller novels of mystery, horror, romance, historical fiction, and fiction, and non-fiction about golf: www.johncoynebooks.com. I wrote all of these books within a three month period. My novels have been published in eight foreign countries. (I also wrote 7 novels before publishing one and could paper a wall with the rejection slips I have received from some of the best magazines and publishing companies in the world! I know what it means to get rejected.) I have two degrees in English literature and have taught creative writing at the high school, college level, and on . . .

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How To Write A Book In 100 Days (Or Less)

Are you a writer? Do you want to write a book? Do you have a great story that you need to tell? Do you read a novel and say to yourself, “I could have written that book, and I could have written it better! Is there this nagging thought in the back of your mind that has been telling you all your life: write your story! Do you really want to stop reading and start writing your book, whether it is a novel, a memoir or non-fiction. Do you ask yourself: Do I want to write my novel? Do you ask yourself: When will I tell my story? Do you ask yourself: How will I write my book? The why is easily answered. And you can answer those questions. You know you will never be satisfied if you don’t sit down and do it. You’re secretly tired of people saying, . . .

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New Novel by Paul Theroux (Malawi 1963–65)

A Dead Hand: A Crime in Calcutta by Theroux is due out in mid-February from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. This is Theroux’s forty-third book, his twenty-seventh novel that includes Hotel Honolulu, My Other Life, and The Elephanta Suite, his most recent collection of short fiction, which Time Magazine said was, “a set of brilliantly evocative and propulsive novellas.” This novel is about Jerry Delfont, a travel journalist leading an aimless life, struggling in vain against his writer’s block, and flitting around the edges of a half-hearted romance when he receives a mysterious letter asking for his help. The story he tells is distrubing: a dead boy found on the floor of a cheap hotel; a seemingly innocent man in flight and fearing for his reputation as well as his life. Well, typical Theroux. Note: A Dead Hand is now available at Amazon — click on either the linked title or the book . . .

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Literary Agents React!

Literary Agents React! By Jeff Rivera on Nov 11, 2009 12:43 PM Miriam Goderich of Dystel & Goderich Literary Management responded in their blog to the GalleyCat posted back in November entitled, Literary Agents, bah! Who needs them? by stating: “Who needs an agent? You do.” In her well-respected blog she also mentioned: “every serious author needs an agent. Not just any agent, of course. You need a good agent. One who is an advocate, who is willing to fight for you and who is able to tell you when you’re being unreasonable and doing your career more harm than good.” And that was not all — emails, comments and tweets have come pouring in from agents, writers and other book publishing professionals with a resounding, “Yes, we do need agents.” Deidre Knight of the Knight Agency says, “Many agents, myself included, believe that the digital age is bringing opportunity. . . .

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