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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Two Years Later

Today marks the second anniversary of the birth of Post. So, here's a little update:

In addition to the introductory and epilogue chapters, three main chapters (Dischord Records, Sunny Day Real Estate and Hot Water Music) remain in the outline/brainstorming phase. All of the other chapters are in some form of completion, but they are by no means finished. I have no idea how long these chapters will be, but the hope is to be around 30 pages each. Quality is focus number one, but the challenge is to create a satisfying quantity of quality. Believe me, this takes a while to get it right.

What also takes a while is getting into full-blown writing mode. Nobody's holding a gun to my head and telling me to write and I often get side-tracked. When I get tired of being sidetracked, I have an easier time focusing. However, since there is a large amount of fact checking (and double-checking) required, the writing spurts often slow down after takeoff. When they do take off and stay on target, I get really excited.

Case in point, last night I decided to give Government Issue a longer backstory in the Jawbox chapter. Back when I started writing the chapter, I just had a burned CD-R of the first disc of GI's Complete History Volume Two. Judging by what I heard and read, I put that into the chapter. Upon revisiting the section and after a few months of owning both volumes of their Complete History, I had more facts to draw from. Just simply reading the liner notes closely, more things of interest popped up (I forgot that Brian Baker of Minor Threat, Dag Nasty and Bad Religion played in an early incarnation of the band). Going back over this rather "small" stuff only helps build better stories.

I still have a few interviews to do before I proceed any further on certain stuff. I hope to interview Jason Black, Chris Wollard and George Rebelo from Hot Water Music sometime this month while I hope to do follow-up interviews with Jason Gnewikow from the Promise Ring and William Goldsmith from Sunny Day Real Estate any day now.

One thing I am considering is interviewing a couple of guys I know here in town that booked a number of these bands back in the day. I keep running into these guys and we always talk about the book, so it seems natural to get their stories too. However, I want the overall focus of the book to be on the bands, the labels, the friendships and the music along with stuff like zines, the shows, the vibes, the environments, etc as the backdrop. I hope this works out without becoming too distracting.

At this point, anything really goes. Once I have the twelve full chapters together, then the "real" writing begins. I wouldn't call it a page one rewrite, but I need to see what works, what doesn't, what's redundant and what needs more clarification. I think this will be like making a rough cut of a film, warts and all. Once this all gets edited (whether it's by me or someone I know), then we'll look into printing options. As I've said all along, that timeframe is very loose.

If the book was to go to press tomorrow, I'd like to print a relatively small number (maybe 1,000) and go from there. I'm pushing for a slow build, so I'm fully prepared to sell this at handfuls at a time. I don't care about numbers: the true success is to finish this and document it. I know this book isn't for everyone, but it's definitely not something just for a specific age or demographic. Post is for anyone who's interested, whether you care about the music or not.

3 comments:

PAgirly said...

you can rest assure that we'll want one of the first 1,000 copies. very anxiously, yet patiently waiting.

Anonymous said...

Really stoked to read the update!

Looking forward to this sucker... good luck finishing and see you back in D-town.

Be home March 11th
rockin
Nick

Sarah E. said...

This kind of reminds me of when I interview about a million people for a really big, in-depth story I'm working on at the paper, and then I have to encapsulate all of that in a creative and fascinating and short 30 inches of copy. Sigh. It's difficult.

Good luck.