ICYMI: And Some Shameless Self-Promotion

These have been a hectic few weeks, as we ramp up the long rollout of FIVE FOR FREEDOM: The African American Soldiers in John Brown’s Army.  Its official publication date is June 1, but I just learned that finished books will be arriving at the publisher, Chicago Review Press, in April. Advanced Reading Copies (ARCs, in the trade) have been sent to potential reviewers, and I’ve been interviewed so far by one regional magazine (which shall, for now, remain anonymous, so as not to spoil the suspense).  Click here for what some advance readers say about the book.

In addition to a scheduled appearance at Politics & Prose at its Connecticut Avenue flagship store on June 2 at 6 p.m., I have been chosen to be a featured speaker at the highly-regarded Gaithersburg Book Festival on May 19.  Present but not presenting, I’ll also be at the 6th annual Washington Writers Conference sponsored by the Washington Independent Review of Books at the College Park Marriott Conference Center on May 5, when I’m scheduled to introduce our keynote speaker, television news icon Bob Schieffer—my perk for helping to organize the panels and recruit the panelists and speakers for this important event, which also includes 15 agents. Register now!

This Sunday, Feb. 18, at 2 p.m. I’ll be in Harpers Ferry for a panel discussion on Storer College, founded in 1867 for the education of former slaves and closed in 1955 after West Virginia withdrew its subsidy. The college has historical ties to the African Americans with John Brown, and I devote an entire chapter in my book to the connection. The panel will be on the former Storer campus. For more information on this and other scheduled events, please click here for the Events tab from my web site’s home page. And see this Facebook post:

On Saturday, Feb. 24, I will be moderating a panel at the National Building Museum as part of the Architecture & Design Film Festival, the ninth annual and the first to be held in D.C. The panel discussion follows the showing of a 2017 documentary on a 1960s visionary who wanted to create an “experimental city” in Minnesota.

But there is more to my work life these days, including several stories to be found under the Articles tab.  For Bethesda Magazine’s “Banter” section, I profiled Mr. Hot Wheels, an extreme collector of the miniature cars and related ephemera, and the Abstract Gardener, a biochemist who uses mathematical algorithms to produce startling works of “fractal” art. I am currently working on a longer piece for the magazine on the Marriott Corporation’s move to downtown Bethesda. My New York Times story on converting office units to residential units was another recent addition to the dozens of Square Feet features I’ve written for The Newspaper of Record.

In the middle of all this, Charles W. Halleck died.  He was a D.C. Superior Court judge ultimately known for his progressive views and intemperate behavior. For the Columbia Journalism Review online, I wrote about my reporting that was instrumental in ending his judicial career, raising questions of confidential sources and ethics in journalism–and whether reporters should consider the impacts of their work before publishing. Click here.

If that were not enough, we are wrapping up edits for the spring issue of B’nai B’rith Magazine, where I’ve been the editor since 12/09. We are now online-only three out of four issues a year.  Our Spring cover story: genetic testing.

That’s all, folks!

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