Writing, Fighting Fire, and Your Pal, Jerry

Dear Readers: I just read a review about my memoir, Ahead of the Flaming Front: A Life on Fire, which I quote as it appears: If you are going to read memoirs about fire fighters, here are the two you must start with: Young Men and Fire by Norman McLean and Ahead of the Flaming …

Tricking Memory with a Radio Interview on Boise Public Radio

My first Public Radio interview aired and I heard about it first from my good friend Craig. I’d been interviewed because my memoir, Ahead of the Flaming Front: A Life on Fire, won the North American Book Award. Craig and I were rookies on the Krassel Heli-Rappellers together and the oldest two on the crew. …

Strangers Who Write Me

Today I got an email from a stranger. No not a spam email trying to sell me timeshares or a phishing email to help some poor Nigerian claim an inheritance, but a person who had read Andrea Mason’s review of my book, Ahead of the Flaming Front in High Country News. She sought out my …

Marketing and the split personality

So I’ve been working feverishly on a new project and neglecting the blog. It’s true. What’s the use of the blog, sometimes I think, when I should be working on the new project like an attentive new lover. I am a writer after all and 500 words here is not 500 words there. Marketing of …

Excerpting Books for an Essay or Short Story

I took a couple of chapters from a novel in progress, formed them into a short story and sent it in to the Narrative Prize. I placed in the top ten and Tom Jenks at Narrative Magazine sent me back a copy with his editorial suggestions. Red Flag Warning had like six pages cut from …

A Symphony in Essay Form

Here is the title essay from my essay collection, Fever and Guts: A Symphony as it appeared in the wonderful Dos Passos Review.  For the book I broke the essay into its four movements and spaced them throughout the book.  Section I begins the book and IV ends as one would expect in doing this. …