D. Foy, Jeff Jackson and Megan McShea, all writers celebrating their first books published, will speak tonight and read from their respective works.
When planning the event, Flyleaf marketing manager Linnie Greene only expected Foy to do the reading, until he contacted her back saying that Jackson and McShea would be joining him. Getting two more than she bargained for, Greene said she was delighted at the chance to host three acclaimed authors.
“I think people should come because it’s a rare opportunity to get to hear authors that are really promising and critically acclaimed and notable still in their relative infancy,” she said.
The authors will be doing readings from each of their books, followed by recollections of experiences they have encountered while writing. After that, that there will be a Q&A session.
For Jackson, writing had been a long-term relationship, beginning in high school. His novel, “Mira Corpora,” is loosely based off of the old journals Jackson used to carry around with him.
“I don’t remember writing a lot of it. And that was the sort of jumping off point — the springboard — and these journals were filled with things that happened to me, events that happened to friends, sort of gossip that had circulated throughout the town and school in the area I grew up,” Jackson said.
Compared to other stories he has written, “Mira Corpora” is more hallucinatory and dreamlike — it’s based in reality but with elements of dream logic at play against concrete events as the story unfolds.
Jackson serves as the link between McShea and Foy, knowing each of the authors in a different way.
“We both met in the theater program at Duke,” McShea said about Jackson.
“He’s been sort of a writer friend of mine for the whole span of my time writing, and I think we’ve both influenced each other in a lot of ways through the years.”
McShea said she thinks of herself as the outlier of the group with her book, “A Mountain City of Toad Splendor,” being an experimental collection of poems and stories in contrast to Jackson and Foy’s novels, but that this only serves to emphasize that there are opportunities for unique voices to be heard, especially in independent presses.
Foy, author of “Made to Break,” shares a publication label, Two Dollar Radio, with Jackson.
Foy’s love of writing came through a different medium — music. While playing in bands he started to write music, lyrics and entire songs.
“I don’t know how or why, but I just got it in my head that I was going to be a writer and that’s what I did do. I just started writing,” Foy said.
Foy said the process from draft to book can be an intense process, having experienced the transitions from a first draft in 1998 to the finished product that became “Made to Break.”
“Writing is 2 percent inspiration and 98 percent perspiration,” he said.
Greene said the authors’ fresh perspectives on timeless topics set them apart from others.
“I just feel very sure that there are really big things to come for these authors.”