Coordination of the release of a book is a bit stressful. Plus I’m finding finishing one aspect and letting that go and then moving onto the next more romantic, so that’s the way I went. Official release day will be when I have the thirty paperbacks I ordered in my hands and can start handing and mailing them out. My hope for Letters Home is that I can gift copies to people interested enough to want to read my grandpa’s story. That will be the culmination of a process that has been enormously fulfilling, starting with the day I posted snippets from his letters to facebook and received so much interest back that I got highly motivated to take on this project. From there I borrowed the box of letters from my mom and sat on the floor and read them all and copied out passages of interest. Virtually all the words of my grandfather were of interest, but I eliminated the repetition so that what would remain would be concise enough to give people something of the experience of their exchange of letters (which worked best using only his) in the form of a story.
Everyone still alive was born with these letters in existence (with the technical half-exception of my mother, Lynne, who was born while her father was at war and even had one of the letters addressed to her). We’ve all at one time or another fished one out and read it and received some hint of what a treasure of family history had been preserved. Yet there was a sense that this world we were all born into was a world where these, not ancient but old, handwritten letters existed in a box. We didn’t have the perspective to fully realize their value. I feel like quoting my grandfather here, “This is getting very philosophical, which I didn’t intend.” Then there was an afternoon my mother and I were going through stuff and we found some sheets my grandmother had copied and printed from the letters and we were both reading them. Well, I had my laptop nearby and thought to post snippets to facebook.
The responses from people revealed what a worthwhile undertaking this project would be, to bring an audience to those buried letters. I’m not going to lie. That primary audience is comprised of the people whose names are in the book, under the about the author, Rex Jones, those who he is survived by, his daughters and grandchildren and great grandchildren. But the first audience that initially motivated me is those of you who have been liking and following along with my progress (yes, on facebook, social media is what we make of it, mostly) since that afternoon last summer. Which is why I truly want to gift the book to people, because it’s for you. The book is for sale as a paperback and as an Ebook. My thought is that I’ll probably be able to afford to give away copies of either, whichever readers prefer. I’ll have bookmarks to give out with the copies and invite people to let others know of the book. You’re welcome to send them my way and I’ll get them a copy, as well. If they’re interested enough to contact me, they’re interested enough that they’ll give my grandpa’s story a chance, which is all a writer can hope for from a reader. I expect that if I keep gifting copies and keep finding people willing to accept them, sales from others will trickle in to keep the whole operation afloat.
Ebook of Letters Home available here:
Paperback of Letters Home available here:
Have a look, read the sample, peruse some of the other entries under the tab “Grandpa Rex” (many more coming), and connect with me so I can gift a copy to you. I’ll be including bookmarks with gifted copies and requesting people to pass them out to people who might be interested, and I’ll be requesting people share their opinions on the book in the form of reviews, posted anywhere or everywhere they’re comfortable posting them, but these will be simply requests and not expectations. Hopefully they’ll be received that way.
Thank you for your interest in my grandpa’s story.
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