Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Becoming An Encourager and The Rock River Literary Series

Publishing and selling the books of writers I admire from my hometown is now my life's work. It became my calling in 2014 after I had heart surgery and took heed of a local gallery owner named Tom Littrel who had approached me several times previous to that to encourage me to become an ensourager. It's not necessary to explain what he meant by that, we all understand it intuitively, and I wanted no part of it. I was doing just fine with my own work, and my partner Jenny was doing fine with her work, and the last thing I wanted was to mess up something that was working fine to include other people.

Then I had unexpected heart surgery. Major surgery. Valves and sections of artery being replaced surgery. And during the surgery I died. Only with several hours of additional surgery were they able to bring me back. Interestingly enough, nobody told me this until the anniversary of my surgery a year later, and then it was only mentioned casually. It's strange what we probably never know about our own lives. 

I've seen a lot of shows and such speculating about what near death experiences might be like. Does one enter a realm where things unseen become seen? I'm not sure, because I didn't really have any unusually interesting NDE's, but when I awoke I knew what I wanted to do.

I wanted to publish other peoples' books. I wanted to be an encourager.

In 2014 I published the first book in the Rock River Literary Series. The Rock River Literary Series was an idea I got when I took a meeting with the late publisher of the Rock River Times, Frank Schier. His obsession in life was The Rock River Trail, and he wanted to develop a website that plotted the literary influence of past and present writers along the course of the Rock River. That seemed a little sweeping for me, but the idea of giving a spotlight to writers from right here in Rockford seemed more manageable and satisfying, and I knew local legend Jesus Correa was the obvious candidate for the first book.

So, we met at CJ's, and after a couple of beers and listening to some Johnny Horton songs on the jukebox I asked if he had enough material for a book. I'd been reading his late night posts since the My Space days and knew he had built up a backlog of work worthy of a book, and I also knew if I could intersperse that with his amazing artwork we'd have something quite worthwhile. 

Iced Cream

We just released the fifth book in the Rock River Literary Series, The Koa Tree by Stephen Schreiner. I feel so good I blew off an apppointment at the cardiologist's office today to tell you about why I publish these books. 

You can see all the books I've published since 1997 now at the Zombie Logic Press Facebook shop. When you buy one it helps me make the next one. You can like our Facebook page when you're there, too, which helps me not have to pay Facebook every time I want my followers to see what I post.

No comments:

Post a Comment