Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Another Long Overdue Update


Greetings e-universe-


I hope this finds you all healthy and happy in the New Year. Things for me are going rather swimmingly, albeit much slower and slightly duller than my Army days. The big news, of course, is the publication of Kaboom: Embracing the Suck in a Savage Little War, by Da Capo Press, on April 1. (While I appreciate a good gag on April Fool's Day, if this is one, I'm not in on it, I assure all of you). It bears a passing resemblance to the material on this blog, but the majority of its content is new and has been vetted by an honest to Allah editing process. Amazing what another set of eyes can do, isn't it? Further, it spans my unit's entire fifteen months in Iraq, as opposed to the six or so that are chronicled here.


Anyhow, I want this to be an informative update, not just a shameless plug, especially in the midst of this economy - nonetheless, I must mention that Kaboom: Embracing the Suck in a Savage Little War is now available for pre-order on Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com, and Borders.com. Its own website will be up shortly, and I'll pass along that URL when the website is completed. I think the book is pretty good - pretty damn good, actually - and the good people at Da Capo are a big reason why. If you get a chance to read it - and I mean read it, not just buy it, because the former is far more important - I hope and believe you'll agree. My aim was to make it unlike any other modern war memoir out there, in terms of voice, literary style, and bringing my soldiers to life out of the banal silhouettes they are all too often described as. Only time and your feedback can determine is such an ambition was achieved.


On the personal front, I've settled into big city life in New York. The adjustments to the crowds and to the winter has been interesting, but the subway offers endless entertainment, and being able to see City Girl regularly is definitely worthy of hyperbole. I'm in the throes of grad school applications, and will likely be in school next fall channeling my Iraq experience into Islamic Studies or Middle Eastern History of some sort.


I continue to stay in contact with the Gravediggers and the Gunslingers (the unit I spent my time with in Iraq post-blog brouhaha). As occurs with most military units after a deployment, we are strewn across the globe at this point, with many preparing for yet another tour of duty in Iraq or Afghanistan. The stoic resoluteness of our soldiers continues to astound me, and I am keenly aware that my time in the service will always be with me, no matter where I may drift away to in this life.


I'll be updating this blog, fairly regularly, as the publication date for Kaboom nears. Many of my family, friends, and e-acquaintances have asked about the process, so I'll do my best to describe it as I go through it. It's definitely exciting, but don't expect a rock n roll diary - from what I've gathered thus far, the book world is slightly more boring than that.


Oh, and feel free to bask in the awesomeness of the cover!


Hasta.

28 comments:

Anonymous said...

Fantastic!
Can't wait to read it.
You can bet I'll be promulgating it whenever I can.

Mr Icker said...

dude, this is fantastic news! just pre-ordered my copy on Amazon. If it's half as honest as this blog was, i know it will be a huge hit

Tracy said...

YES!!!!

Eric C said...

I've been reviewing the recent war memoirs on my own blog, so I'm interested to read your take. Specifically, I think most soldiers in war memoirs are as you described, silhouettes. Even enemies are described in impossibly glowing terms. The Army seems incapable of critiquing soldiers, which means the books aren't honest, unlike say Generation kill.

But on literary technique and voice, I've read a lot of war memoirs that did great stuff. I'm curious to see what techniques you're going to use, and how you're going to improve.

Anonymous said...

@ Eric - judging from the blog, I'd guess LT G will definitely be able to describe his men! I'm very excited to read it.

Trisha said...

Can't wait to get it - I just pre-ordered copies for myself and my family.

Callsign Sherpa said...

Congratulations on being one step closer to the book! Burning up the Internet is great, but there's nothing like cutting down trees!

You've been both an mil-blogging inspiration and lessons-learned lightning-rod for me, particularly as my buddies and I prepare to embrace that other suck later this year. I decided to go into partial stealth mode, given my command's social media schizophrenia. The result was/is www.redbullrising.com.

This isn't about me, however, this is about you: Thanks for your service, and for your words.

Like my Engineer buddies say, Essayons!

Justin said...

Count me in for at least one copy. You coming to DC area at all? I'd love to get a signed copy!

lela said...

Ah LtG....how wonderful to hear from you again! Like the rest of the unwashed masses, I can't wait to read your book! I've been there with you from the beginning....and missed the Gravedigger updates after you had to leave the e-verse. Like many others, I'll be advertising the tome on my blog. Congratulations!!!!

Joey said...

GRAVEDIGGERS!!!!

this is so great. zero chance this book doesn't become the "IT" iraq book. seriously. i believe in you, LT G

Anonymous said...

Cover? Awesome.

I've been waiting for this book for a long time.
Thanks LT G

Willy Gehlen said...

Matt,

Good to hear about the book, I will buy a copy right after I get through the GRE dilemma! I will spred the word to get people to buy the book and make you some money. Remember you promised to take it onto O'Reilly factor, I am holding you to that! Thanks for the update.

mutt said...

GLAD to hear from you!!! This will be going out on my vets list!
Cant tell you how much I missed yur commentary.
Very glad to hear from you...
Mutt

Anonymous said...

I'm going to order my copy today. Congratulations on all of your success. The blog was amazing.

Hardtack said...

It is so good to see you back. I have missed your blogging (totally understand why you went off), and it made my day to see you back. A great and tremendous Welcome Back.

Now how about autographed copies ?

OldGrouchy Doug Wright said...

Welcome back to the world! Hope you've got a job, it's rough out there!

Seriously, looking forward to the book. Hope it explains the silliness the Green Machine went through back in your day there.

But, foremost, how's the platoon doing? Keeping with with Hotwheels on Caring Bridge; he's got a good strong family supporting him.

Sgt. B. said...

Glad to read this. Will there be a West Coast book tour?

Daddio said...

Good to hear that all is well with you and City Girl, and your book has a publishers date. I have been Googling "Kaboom" for 6+ months looking for some news on your book. I was beginning to think you were going to outdo J.D. Salinger and become a recluse even before you were published. As someone posted earlier, you should autograph a number of your first edition, first printing, and have a place to Pre-order them direct. I am sure that you will have no trouble getting requests for it. I for one want an autographed first edition, to add to my limited first edition collection.

Eric said...

Re grad school in NYC, I suggest Columbia University.

Columbia, besides being NYC's own Ivy League school, has a healthy population of military veterans. Look up the US Military Veterans of Columbia University.

M*A said...

That's great news. Can't wait to read it.

Anonymous said...

Ordered copies today for me and friends. Can't wait to read it! Welcome back to the free world Capt G.

Anonymous said...

This is excellent news! Just ordered my copy.

Anonymous said...

I just posted the info on the Soldier's Angels forum! Can't wait to get my copy.

Term Papers said...

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mike said...

Just read the book. Outstanding.

Anonymous said...

I am a 66 year old viet nam vet and i was struck by the paragraph that contains the sentences "And coming to terms with this permanent state of combat readiness has made me realize just how much i miss war (or parts of it) and how lucky... etc in Feb 11 edition of "The Week" is the best paragraph i have ever read that describes my experience 45 years ago. paul-ohio

donna mccracken said...

my brother is the big ern. i.m ordering the book. thanks, donna mccracken.

Jackie Victor said...

I just checked out your book from my library - I'm searching for answers, Matt. My nephew joined the Army, deployed from Ft. Lewis to Iraq in 2009 to roughly the same area near Bagdad. He drove a Stryker, later became a dispatcher, receiving the Combat Infantry Badge. He came home a different person - he hung himself on August 1st, 2012. The buddy who served by his side also attempted suicide.

It was PTSD, we're told. He refused to speak of what happened there. I'm hoping, by reading your day-to-day account, I will learn the truth, the unspeakable horrors that he could not escape, the terror that followed him home... I'm search for answers: WHY?