I was crossing Fifth Avenue when my phone rang. It was Dan, calling me with some very unexpected but very exciting news: a longtime fan of his music had loved a series of posts he'd been writing for his blog called There Was a Time When I Had No Fans.
In the series, he describes growing up on a farm in rural New York State, pursuing his love for the stage during college, fueling his creativity with a move to Chicago (penniless but impassioned), the speed with which he went from playing at open-mic nights with audiences in the single digits to national radio airplay and performances at folk festivals with attendance numbering in the thousands - and, especially, how the shock of this sudden turn led him to problems with drugs, alcohol, and self-mutilation . . . and the realization that changed his approach to his career, his music, and his life.
The fellow happened to own an independent publishing company and had been floored by Dan's story - did he want to write an autobiography?
Um, WHAT?! Of course Dan was honored and humbled by the request, but he felt strange about writing the story of his own life.
The publisher knew that I'm a writer and suggested we work on the book together. And so that's what we're doing.
The book is tentatively titled The Last Bus of the Night, and it will be part memoir, part motivation for those interested in pursuing a creative passion, people who want to set their own rules and live the life they want - so we're including lessons learned and tools to arm you in exploring a different existence from the one typically prescribed by society.
It's exciting just to be writing a book (my first! Eee!) in the first place, but you know how we roll: when Dan and I do something, we go BIG. So we're not just completing the book and then letting it fly away on the next strong breeze. No siree!
We've started a Kickstarter campaign to help raise funds so that this book won't be released to a limited audience simply as an e-book: we want it to be an actual, physical object that you can hold in your hands and smell the pages of (you know you do it). We also want to print and release a run of books to be placed in indie bookstores in the U.S. and Canada and . . .
(drum roll please)
. . .
do a book tour! Yes! Readings! Signings! Live performances by Dan! Hooray! We'll start on the West Coast, and hopefully make our way to cities in the Midwest and on the East Coast. And if the pledges we receive are significantly higher than the minimum, we plan to bring the tour to Europe and let fans determine where we go!
Pledge levels start at just $5, and there are tons of awesome rewards and prizes for folks who back this project. We have 30 days to hit our goal of $1500, and with 23 days left, we're just over 40% of the way there. (Which is, frankly, amazing. Thank you for your contributions, early sponsors!)
We would be delighted if you chose to support our campaign: every pledge counts, as does every tweet and FB share! Looky looky: