I inhaled part one in a couple days. I was constantly impressed with the quality of the writing. Like, wow. You're good. Have you ever been asked if it comes easily to you? And how would you answer?
I've been skipping around the other parts. Pete Carrels would like to quote something for the next Pines & Prairie, the SD Sierra Club newsletter. Anything you would recommend?
"oolong-sipping esthetes", p.152. Really? Weren't American (San Franciscan?) liberals disparaged as latte-sipping not long ago?
I just stumbled across the L'Amour passage, p. 244. It's hilarious.
The only word I would change, were I your editor, would be "real" in the sentence "The only real hope...would be supernatural." p. 47. It doesn't ring true because supernatural suggests the unreal. Perhaps something like "remaining"?
Do metaphors come naturally to you? "...hooves of teenage cruelty or wildfire gossip." p. 93. (insert symbol for appreciative whistle) I've never mastered them, not even close. I've had people call my prose poetic, women fall in love with me for it, but I have to force metaphors. I can sense things as they are and described what I sense, then connect them to other things in space and time, but metaphors, they take leaps too broad for brooking.
I just finished reading the George McGovern article in the NYT and thoroughly enjoyed it. I grew up in Ipswich, 26 miles west of Aberdeen, was a patron of Prairie Dog Records and a big fan of The Red Willow Band. I was 14 in '72 , my mother and her girlfriends were active in the campaign and I remember the tears shed on election night. Was pleasantly surprised to hear of Larry Pressler's Obama endorsement, I remember when he was asking McCarthyite questions about the people at Pacifica News. I attended USD from '76-'78 and Sen Abourezk's little brother was quite involved in Native American activism on campus. I joined him and others one afternoon and we chased Bill Janklow out of the student union. Thanks for the article and I'm looking forward to the book. If you ever have an event in Salt Lake, I'll be there.
You rock star! On the television, etc.!
Josh Garrett-Davis is the author of Ghost Dances: Proving Up on the Great Plains.