Dec 20, 2011

Why We Publish Books

Recently, a letter arrived at Scarletta for two of our authors—James Peter Taylor and Kathleen Murphy-Taylor. They co-wrote the book Willow in a Storm. Willow in a Storm is a raw, unflinching memoir about the events in James Peter Taylor's unusual life, over forty years of which were spent incarcerated.
This letter was sent from a man in the Alexander Correctional Institute who had received the Taylor's book through a books to prisoners program. His story was so moving and his words were so kind that our authors asked us to share some of his letter.

This book has changed my life. I no longer wish for death since reading Willow in a Storm because I now know it is possible to survive the rapes, beatings and psychological torture that I have been forced to endure these last three years...I feel compelled to write so that you will know how much you have helped me through your book and to know also that you have very likely saved my life as well.
Where I will be tomorrow is as unclear as where I will be ten years from now, but I wanted you to know that your book has given me something, that until now I have lacked during this horrible experience. Hope. And for that I thank you.
These words are enough to fill a publisher's heart with joy. We are incredibly sorry for the unfairness of life that has led to this man's incarceration, but at the same are glad that we were able to publish a novel that could give him such comfort. At the end of the day, sure, a book on the New York Times' Best Seller's list would be great, but it's even more rewarding to personally hear from the those whose lives have been touched by our books.If you want help change a prisoner's life through literature, here are some great books to prisoners programs: Women's Prison Book Project (located in Minneapolis), Internationalist Prison Books Collective and Midwest Pages to Prisoners Project.

No comments:

Post a Comment