After writing hundreds of thousands of words it is safe to say that 2016 was a productive year. To recap the highlights:
As I write this I’m doing the final citations on Lincoln: The Man Who Saved America for Fall River Press of Sterling Publishing. The book will be released in late July of 2017. The opportunity to write the book came about through a combination of luck and the success of my previous books. My Sterling editor approached my literary agent with an idea: because Tesla and Edison were doing well, the publisher wanted to start a similar series on historical figures. First up was Alexander Hamilton (the Broadway musical has everyone all atwitter about this otherwise little-known early politician) and Abraham Lincoln. Did my agent know anyone who might be interested?
Given that I had already provided my agent with an early draft of a proposal for a Lincoln-related book, she immediately contacted me. After convincing my editor that my lifetime of independent Lincoln studies showed I knew as much (and more) about Lincoln than I did about Tesla/Edison. I got the project. Look for it next summer. Here is an early version of the prologue to give you a flavor.
Of course, I also had a book come out in stores this year. As noted in last year’s update, my big writing project last year was Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World (again for Fall River/Sterling). The book was released officially in late July 2016, though to be honest, it wasn’t put on display until months later because of Barnes and Noble’s bizarre promotion of “adult coloring books.” Now that it finally is being displayed its sales are doing well.
Meanwhile, Tesla: The Wizard of Electricity is into its 7th printing and has been translated into several languages. The book continues to be a huge success.
Phew. That’s already a rather busy writing year, but to this I added hundreds of blog posts on Science Traveler, Hot White Snow, and The Dake Page, not to mention way too much time writing long discussions about climate change on sites such as Facebook.
But wait, there’s more. I also contributed to the CPRC newsletter (science) and began a recurring book review column in the Lincolnian, the quarterly newsletter of the Lincoln Group of DC. During the year I also gave a short presentation on the group’s “Looking for Lincoln in Illinois” trip.
Oh, and somehow I found time to read 107 books, 27 of which were related to Abraham Lincoln and from which I took copious notes.
So by anyone’s standards this was a busy writing year. I also had a busy year traveling, which I summarized in my year-end “Year in Science Traveling” post.
And 2017 looks like it will be more of the same.
David J. Kent is the author of Tesla: The Wizard of Electricity (2013) and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World (2016) (both Fall River Press). He has also written two e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate. His next book is on Abraham Lincoln, due out in 2017.
Photo Credit: Ru Sun