Archive - August 2015

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Ron Singer (Nigeria 1964–67) discusses UHURU REVISITED
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Summer School- How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 4
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Summer School-How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 3
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Summer School-How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 2
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Review: Haile Selassie’s Ethiopia – Revisited by Hoyt Smith (Ethiopia 1962–65)
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PEACE CORPS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 147 / Friday, July 31, 2015 / Proposed Rules
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Summer School- How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 1
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Review: NEVER FORGOTTEN by Paul Huntsberger (Ethiopia 1965–67)

Ron Singer (Nigeria 1964–67) discusses UHURU REVISITED

Ron Singer’s interest in Africa  began when he was a PCV in Nigeria between 1964 and 1967. After obtaining a Ph.D. in English from the University of Chicago in 1976, he taught until 2008. He is the author of seven previous books, as well as hundreds of poems, stories and articles, many of them about Africa. Uhuru Revisited, that was published in February of this year, is the product of sojourns he made to  six African countries during 2010 and 2011. The following are excerpts from an interview with Ron, conducted by Laurel Johnson for the Midwest Book Review that was published in February 2014, and are re-printed by permission of the interviewer. • MBR: Your latest book is Uhuru Revisited: Interviews with African Pro-Democratic Leaders. What was the genesis of the book, and what process did you use to create this complex mix of background research, networking, travel, interviewing, . . .

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Summer School- How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 4

“I’m not sure I understand the creative process. I’ve never given much attention to it. I understand how I work, but I really don’t know what psychological things happen in the creative process, or why someone creates.” Paddy Chayefsky, screenwriter Yesterday I discussed two of the components that contribute to an author’s voice: style and tone. I will discuss two others today – focus and creativity. FOCUS is what you select to write about. It is the piece of clothing that demands the most attention – a bright yellow dress, a smart suit. CREATIVITY is the choice of what details and examples you use in your writing. You might say it is the choice of which accessories to add to your outfit – a pair of earrings, a certain of tie. Focus All (or most) Peace Corps books are creative non-fiction, all based on historical facts within your own experiences. . . .

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Summer School-How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 3

Rejection slip received by Rudyard Kipling: I’m sorry, Mr. Kipling, but you just don’t know how to use the English language.” from Rotten Rejections: A Literary Companion edited by Andre Bernard Finding Your Voice You have begun your book. You have decided on how you want to structure the book. Now you have to find your voice. For years the voice of nonfiction was an impersonal voice, attracting no attention. Fiction had a “voice” but not nonfiction. It wasn’t until the 1960s when Tom Wolfe, Gay Talese, and a half dozen others gave birth to The New Journalism that voice began to receive attention in nonfiction. Generally what this meant was subjective nonfiction, nonfiction with an attitude, or subjective reporting. The New Journalism, coming of age with the “Me Generation,” morphed into what we have today, Creative Nonfiction. In Creative Nonfiction, we have the writer’s voice, a human touch in . . .

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Summer School-How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 2

“Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original, and the part is that is original is not good.” Samuel Johnson Well, we’re RPCV writers and we are both good and original! One of the great gifts of the Peace Corps is that everyone’s experience is so special and individual. No matter when a person served in the Peace Corps, what year or where, the Volunteer comes home from the tour thinking “this is the Peace Corps!” and she or he is right. No two experiences are the same and, therefore, whatever you write is original. Now you have to make the telling of your story original. Planning and Writing Your Book In this lesson, I want to cover the structure of your book and look at three examples: Sarah Erdman (Cote D’Ivorie 1998-2000), Peter Hessler (China 1996-98) and Mike Tidwell (Zaire 1985-87). . . .

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Review: Haile Selassie’s Ethiopia – Revisited by Hoyt Smith (Ethiopia 1962–65)

Haile Selassie’s Ethiopia – Revisited photos by Hoyt A. Smith (Ethiopia 1962–65) and narration by Theodore Vestal (Associate Director PC/Ethiopia 1964–66) Self-published 2014 $45.00 (Click for more information and to order) Reviewed by Wayne Kessler (Ethiopia 1964–66) • Hey RPCV! Go back to your country of service: see the changes, renew friendships, take photos and bring them back home. This is what Hoyt Smith’s  Haile Selassie’s Ethiopia — Revisited encourages us to do. You never know, returning could lead to more service and adventures. Hoyt’s photographs, along with Ted Vestal’s few words, present us with a unique book of 100 pages of historical photos from the 1960s combined with 95 pages of photos taken 50 years later. We can see what has changed and what hasn’t. The book will be most enjoyed by people who have lived in or traveled extensively in Ethiopia. Also, it will be of great interest . . .

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PEACE CORPS Federal Register / Vol. 80, No. 147 / Friday, July 31, 2015 / Proposed Rules

PEACE CORPS 22 CFR Part 305 RIN 0420-AA26 Eligibility and Standards for Peace Corps Volunteer Service AGENCY: Peace Corps. ACTION: Proposed rule. SUMMARY: This proposed regulation would restate and update the requirements for eligibility for Peace Corps Volunteer service, and the factors considered in the assessment and selection of eligible applicants for training and service. The requirements and factors for eligibility and selection were last published in 1984. A revision of the regulation is necessary to conform to changes in Federal laws and regulations, particularly with respect to those prohibiting discrimination on the basis of disability, and to reflect policy changes made by the Peace Corps. DATES: Comments due on or before August 31, 2015. ADDRESSES: Address all comments to Anthony F. Marra, Associate General Counsel, Peace Corps, 1111 20th Street NW., Washington, DC 20526. Comments may also be sent electronically to the following email address: pcfr@ peacecorps.gov. FOR FURTHER . . .

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Summer School- How To Write Your Peace Corps Book, Lesson # 1

For the next two week, Monday through Friday, I will give you suggestions on how to write your Peace Corps Book. If you wish, you can also put into the ‘Comment’ Section of the blog the first paragraph, page or chapter of your book and I’ll comment on it, as will, I hope, other RPCVs. This class (I hope) will get you started writing your novel or memoirs on your Peace Corps experience. In this first lesson, I am going to focus on two topics: Becoming a Writer and Getting Started. As Fran Lebowitz, author o Metropolitan Life once said, It’s really scary just getting to the desk. My mouth gets dry, my heart beats fast. I react psychologically the way other people react when the plane loses an engine. . Jacques Barzun who taught at Columbia University and wrote wonderful books, wrote this about becoming a writer: Convince yourself . . .

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Review: NEVER FORGOTTEN by Paul Huntsberger (Ethiopia 1965–67)

Never Forgotten: Teaching in Rebellious Eritrea 1965–1967 & Returning After 35 Years by Paul E. Huntsberger (Ethiopia 1965–67) LifeRichPublishing October 2014 192 pages $14.99 (paperback) Reviewed by Martin Ganzglass (Somalia 1966–68) • Paul Huntsberger’s Never Forgotten- Teaching in Rebellious Eritrea 1965-1967 & Returning After 35 Years is a Peace Corps memoir written from a unique perspective. Not many Volunteers served in a province of their host country that later became an independent nation. Huntsberger was a middle school teacher from 1965 to 1967, in the small village of Saganeiti, about 40 miles south of Asmara, the capital of the province of Eritrea, then part of Ethiopia. The armed Eritrean struggle for independence began in 1962, the year Emperor Haile Selassie nullified the federal arrangement established by a United Nations Resolution, disbanded the Eritrean parliament and fully annexed Eritrea. The war went on for thirty years, ending in a military victory . . .

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