Monday, December 12, 2011

One author's success story

Today's mail brought me an advance reading copy of Roll On, a novel by Fred Afflerbach. Fred is a former independent truck drive who left the road--something not all drivers can do with grace--and graduated from college at fifty and went on to become an award-winning journalist. His novel reflects his belief that American literature has overloked an important twentieth century figure, the long-haul truck driver who is, Afflerbach says, the descendent of sailors, explorers, mountain men and cowboys. Fred's novel gives you a chance to ride shotgun with one of these fiercely independent road warriors--and this author know of what he writes when he describes one trucker's battle against a changing world. Technology, business and family areall pushing truckers off the road.
Just before I retired from TCU Press, I was working with Fred on his novel. With a reader's appraisal in hand, I had suggested rewrites which he successfully made. My successor decided not to move forward with the project, so Fred and I corresponded, and I tried to encourage him, counseling persistence in trying other publishers. Fred and his wife came by the house and had a glass of wine when they were in Fort Worth.  Academy Chicago Publishers accepted the manuscript and are touting it as a unique portrait of an American individual. It will be available in ebook and trade paper later this month.
If Ubi Sunt (the trucker of the novel--the name is a long story, well explained in the book) is an American individual, Fred Afflerbach is the eitome of many of today's authors. Believing in himself and receiving encouragment, from his wife, from me and others, he persevered and his dream of being a published author is coming true. I hope he has other books in his mind or head or whatever.
Look for Roll On in your local bookstore or online and give it a try. It's very authenticity will make you glad you read it.

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