Whenever I get off work, I've always got my nose in a book. I'm on a constant search for more reading material. Back in March I frequently visited Barnes and Noble in Oak brook. My routine consisted of me grabbing three or four books I was curious about and schlepping them to the upstairs cafe.
At the time, I was thumbing through The Tattooed Girl by Joyce Carol Oates, which I finished, Zen and The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, How Starbucks Saved My Life and Publish This Book.
I like carrying a stack of books and read at least ten or fifteen pages out of each forming a sort of Battle Royale on which book will win my attention. The book that was the victor: Publish This Book, of course.
It was the only book of the bunch that grabbed me from the very first page. I was laughing loudly each time I picked it up. Sometimes I had to walk off a good laugh because people were staring at me. Publish This Book follows the journey of Stephen Markely, a man who sets out to get the book in question published. With all good memoirs, especially with writing memoirs, it's not about the end result but being taken on a journey with the author, through the struggles and the victories. I'd come to Barnes and Noble almost every day to down one more chapter out of the book, because I couldn't afford it at the time. By the time I reached chapter ten, I had to own the book. Once I purchased it, I read the rest of the book over the course of a day, loving every sharp-witted page of it.
Stephen Markley is one author that needs to be read by every budding writer. It's one of those rare books where you not only gorge yourself on a hundred pages at a time but you are also sad that it has an ending.
Stephen Markley lives in Chicago, is around my age, and writes for the Chicago Red Eye. A great paper which you should pick up. You can read his unique articles at Off The Markley.
A few weeks ago, I contacted Stephen and even was able to talk to him on the phone. He's a very smart, very funny, very well-read guy. I was happy to find that he was an avid reader as well and had a very long reading list.
Here is the interview with the one and only Stephen Markely: