The Foreign Service Journal - November 2014 - page 43

THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
|
NOVEMBER 2014
43
developed over the years to help readers arrive at informed judg-
ments of American foreign policy.
Frederic Mabbatt joined the Foreign Service in 1963 and
served with the U.S. Information Agency in Sudan, Jordan, Bra-
zil, Tanzania, Indonesia and the Netherlands, accompanied by
his wife and two children. He now resides in Sun Valley, Idaho,
where he lectures and writes about contemporary foreign
policy issues, and has been a moderator for the Foreign Policy
Association’s Great Decisions Program for 25 years.
You Are the Needle and
I Am the Thread: A Memoir of an
American Foreign Service Wife
Pamela Joy Anderson, WestBow Press,
2014, $13.94/paperback, $3.99/Kindle,
192 pages.
Though often rewarding, being a Foreign
Service spouse has its challenges. Pamela
Joy Anderson writes about her journey
as an FS spouse and one challenge that was a constant in her
and her family’s lives throughout their deployments: retaining
their religious beliefs while posted in different countries and
cultures throughout the world. Her stories reflect their adapta-
tion to life overseas, as well as back home, in this faith journey
and memoir.
In the late 1980s, after quitting his job and attending classes
at the Center for World Missions, her husband, Tim, joined the
U.S. Agency for International Development. During his career,
the couple and their children lived in Pakistan, Egypt, Bangla-
desh, Indonesia and Washington, D.C.
Anderson relates experiences ranging from the everyday
to once-in-a-lifetime events. In Pakistan, they attended a
church where they worshiped with families from many dif-
ferent countries and denominations, before being evacuated
during the lead-up to the Persian Gulf War. In Egypt, Anderson
taught English-writing skills and went on excursions with her
students to see the site of the Burning Bush. Throughout it all,
Anderson deals with her father’s Alzheimer’s disease diag-
nosis and subsequent death from halfway around the world.
Ultimately, she finds that home is where the U.S. government
sends you.
Pamela Joy Anderson studied six languages and taught while
living abroad. Many of her vignettes were previously published
in
The Foreign Service Journal
. Currently retired, she and her
husband live in Lacey, Washington.
authors now account for 31 percent of total daily e-book
sales, regardless of genre.
Emerging Market Infrastructure
But if self-publishing can make life easier for writers,
it can present a serious problem for the general reader.
Unless a reader has very focused interests in a particular
genre, it is difficult to find the “good” books. Mainstream
reviewers do not generally entertain what they dismissively
refer to as “indie” books, arguing that the culling process
involved in traditional publishing is essential to establish a
book as worthy.
Yet there is no indication that this lively, new industry
will be going away anytime soon. In fact, the elements of
a “sifting and winnowing” infrastructure are beginning
to appear that will help to organize and grow the self-
published market.
The Guardian
, for instance, has debuted
a monthly self-published book contest. And
Publisher’s
Weekly
has created
BookLife
, a website dedicated solely to
self-published works where authors can submit their books
for review.
For those considering self-publishing, here are several
helpful online resources.
Writer’s Digest
provides numerous
forums and discussion posts dedicated to the topic of self-
publishing. Joel Friedlander’s website,
The Book Designer
,
offers a compendium of self-publishing information, as well
as a free download of his guidebook,
10 Things You Need
to Know About Self-Publishing.
And Guy Kawasaki, author
of
APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur—How to Publish a
Book
, has a useful Tools and Resources section on his web-
site, which includes a royalty calculator and self-publishing
intelligence test for potential authors.
Ultimately, the decision on whether to self-publish
comes down to what you hope to achieve and what you are
willing to risk. In publishing, there are no definites. You need
an excellent product; you need to know your audience; and
you need to understand the market.
“Publishing has always been risky for the publisher who
is investing in a book before it is released,” Grossblatt says.
“In self-publishing, the authors have to invest in them-
selves.”
–Assistant Editor Brittany DeLong and
Managing Editor Susan B. Maitra
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