The Blue Ear Books community
Blue Ear Books authors, editors, and contributors constitute a community of mutual support, available to each other informally as well as in planned and organized ways to share experience, networks, ideas, and other resources. We also stay in regular contact with each other and with readers through a variety of channels, including Zoom meetings and a Substack newsletter that we invite you to subscribe to. The Substack features topical essays and book excerpts from our authors and is archived here for anyone to read free of charge (but consider supporting Blue Ear Books authors by becoming a paid subscriber).
Telling the stories, spreading the word
Blue Ear Books authors show what can be accomplished by taking initiative to reach out to organizations and venues in a position to offer audiences and help get the word out:
- Christo Brand and Andrew Russell offer a presentation in which they tell the story of Christo’s lifelong friendship with Nelson Mandela, which began when Mandela was imprisoned on Robben Island and Christo was a young warder (guard) there – a story that’s told fully in Christo’s book Doing Life with Mandela. They did a virtual event, along with South African former political prisoner Igshaan Amlay, hosted by our friend Janie Hermann of the Princeton Public Library, on January 22, 2023. Janie called it a “terrific launch” of the new Blue Ear Books edition of Christo’s book in the USA and posted a recording of it at this link on the Princeton Public Library’s YouTube channel. Christo and Andrew are planning an in-person US speaking tour in November 2023. Read this flyer to learn more.
- The Princeton Public Library hosted a similarly excellent virtual event February 23, 2022 with Eugene Smith, author of Back to the World: A Life after Jonestown, in conversation with Prof. Christopher Fisher of The College of New Jersey. (Eugene Smith’s collaborator on Back to the World was Blue Ear Books publisher Ethan Casey.) The reading of that virtual event can be viewed on the Princeton Public Library’s YouTube channel at this link.
- Col. Lisa Carrington Firmin (USAF ret.), author of Stories from the Front: Pain, Betrayal, and Resilience on the MST Battlefield, has spoken widely around the United States and online since her book’s publication in April 2022 – summed up in her heartfelt message of gratitude posted on our Substack on February 2, 2023. On January 7, 2023, she spoke at Bihl Haus Arts in San Antonio, Texas.
- Thomas MacDonald launched his book Here Is What Happened: A Black Man’s Discoveries and Decisions on November 1 at the historic Hawthorne Hotel in Salem, Massachusetts.
- Our community includes a growing number of American military veterans who share their stories in anthologies and full-length books, as well as at in-person and virtual events.