With the book release just 12 days away, I am starting to feel the need to recognize those who have helped me get to this point in my writing career. (Some of these thanks appear in the Acknowledgements of the book). Part of what spurred this need was getting to see my Dirty Shirt Book Trailer in its final form for the first time. I think it turned out amazing. Better than I even hoped. If you haven't had the chance to see it, I've posted it here and recommend giving it a look...or two...or three.
When it was sent to me I thought about all the work that went into it, and not just me, but three good friends of mine. This project was hatched in the basement of one of them and from the ashes it rose into it's final form. The making of it - everything from the writing of it, to the narration, music, video and closed captioning - was a lot of fun for all of us. Each of the guys has said that they had a good time collaborating with each other on it. And while it's not the biggest part of the whole book launch, it's one of the more visible ones and it came out really well.
And so I'll start by thanking Nick Konkle (music and audio mixing), Bill Lee, (voice-over narration), and Brandon Brown (video). These guys did things I can't do and they make me look better that I am. So thank you guys. The laughter at the end of the video sums up how hard it was to work with you. Let's do it again on the next book!
That said, I have to thank my wife, Donna first. She has had to put up with me over the last four years as I struggled to find my voice and was wacko about sharing my work with her. It's one of my quirks and I'm getting better at it. Thank you for supporting my mid-life right turn.
Kathie Giorgio and Shannon Jackson Arnold are to be thanked for inspiring me to write, rewrite, think about writing, write more, and most of all to believe in my gift. Kathie especially has been the fuel behind Dirty Shirt, and her and her studio saw it to fruition. I've said it before but I'll say it again; no Kathie, no book. So thank you two ladies.
Michael Giorgio (her husband) deserves a great deal of thanks as well. He is a gifted grammarian (great word) and again, his attention to detail makes me look better than I am. So, thanks Michael.
Summer Hanford who is a writing machine, working on her 3rd novel, has been invaluable in helping me with submitting, marketing, and editing my book. She's my first go-to for questions about what is involved in the process. Thank you a thousand times Summer!
The Wednesday and Thursday night AllWriters' gang helped me from week to week with their critiques and encouragement. Bad coffee, cheese balls, chocolate and occasionally, Rumchata, fuels this group. Like Kathie, no AllWriters' gang, no book. They range from a woman in her 80's trying to figure out how to put down on paper something she's compelled to do, to some young twenty somethings. Thank you all present and past students. You are the best.
My mom. She has been my biggest cheerleader, proudly telling everyone, including the checkout clerks at the grocery store, that her son wrote a book. Thanks Mom!
My brothers deserve some accolades for allowing me to write something so personal and expose a little of our lives together. They were helpful with fact checking and any humor in the book directed at them is strictly in fun. I love them and can't wait to camp with them again. Thanks brothers!
The publishers at eLectio Publishing. They believed in my work, helped me see it to completion, and were rockstars to work with. I hope I can work with them again in the future. They are good people. Thank you, Jesse and Christopher.
Deb Tetzlaff deserves thanks for her undying support and mostly for giving me my title. She is so fun to work with and will have her own book soon, of that I'm certain. Thanks Deb!
To my sisters Pat and Jane. For cheering me on, and for being such good sports about their lack of ink in this particular book. More of them in book two. They are the best sisters a person could have and I thank God for them everyday. Thanks sisters!
To you readers. You are the ones who say "I love your blog" or, "I love your writing". You've no idea what that means to a writer. All I can say in return is Thank You. (And tell your friends, of course!)
To anyone I might have forgotten. Thank you. (How's that for covering thine own?)
And finally, I want to thank God for the great gift he has given me. I've known I wanted to be a writer since I was a kid, I just never took it seriously enough. (It took a phone call to Shannon telling me to "take a class and find out what you want from your writing.") My faith is first and foremost in my life and I owe thanks to God for putting these great people in my life as well as the gift of words. Thank you Lord!