Sunday, October 02, 2016

Mark Slouka to Indies: 'What You're Doing Is Essential'

"As writers we do many different gigs--talks, readings, the occasional speech. Some of those matter more than others. This one matters to me personally, as it does to the other writers in this room. It's not about whether you sell some copies of our books, though that would be most welcome. It's about what you, all of you, do just by doing what you do, selling books.... 

"Person by person, book by book, you help sustain values I would call democratic values, of wonder, argument, empathy, context, plurality and respect. You do this every single time you say to somebody 'Here's one I like. This one's pretty good. This one may bother you, trouble your dreams, but you should read it.' I'm guessing it's not always easy; that you have to constantly innovate and adapt and hustle to get books into readers' hands.
There must be days when you wonder what the hell it is that you're doing; when you feel, as I do, sort of like a 21st century roof thatcher. But what you're doing is essential. And I'm so very grateful for it."

--Mark Slouka, author most recently of Nobody's Son: A Memoir, speaking at the author breakfast during NEIBA's fall conference last week -   via
Shelf Awareness                                    

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