Biography/Memoir

Content is about the life of a particular person, relationship, or group of real people.

Mary Grace Foxwell and Alan Guebert, authors of The Land of Milk and Uncle Honey

Please join local author Mary Grace Foxwell and her father Alan Guebert for a reading and booksigning from their book recalling life on a Midwestern family farm.

The Land of Milk and Uncle Honey: Memories from the Farm of My Youth Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780252080944
Availability: Backordered
Published: University of Illinois Press - May 15th, 2015

Paul Buhle, author of Lincoln for Beginners

A Room of One's Own is delighted to welcome Paul Buhle for a reading and booksigning of his new biography, Lincoln for Beginners. Introduced by John Nichols, and hosted on Lincoln's birthday, don't miss this excellent event celebrating one of our nation's most pivotal Presidents!

Paul Buhle, formerly a senior lecturer at Brown University, produces radical comics. He founded the SDS Journal Radical America and the archive Oral History of the American Left and, with Mari Jo Buhle, is coeditor of theEncyclopedia of the American Left. He lives in Madison.

Lincoln for Beginners Cover Image
By Paul Buhle, Sharon Rudahl (Illustrator), Eric Foner (Foreword by)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781934389850
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: For Beginners - January 13th, 2015

John Porcellino, author of The Hospital Suite

A Room of One's Own is delighted to continue our tradition of supporting talented graphic novelists! Beloit-based John Porcellino joins us to discuss his striking new book The Hospital Suite, from Drawn & Quarterly.

JOHN PORCELLINO was born in Chicago, in 1968, and has been writing, drawing, and publishing minicomics, comics, and graphic novels for over thirty years. His celebrated self-published series King-Cat Comics, begun in 1989, has inspired a generation of cartoonists. Diary of a Mosquito Abatement Man, a collection of King-Cat stories about Porcellino’s experiences as a pest control worker, won an Ignatz Award in 2005, and Perfect Example, first published in 2000, chronicles his struggles with depression as a teenager. According to cartoonist Chris Ware, “John Porcellino’s comics distill, in just a few lines and words, the feeling of simply being alive.” He currently lives in Beloit, Wisconsin.

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The Hospital Suite Cover Image
$22.95
ISBN: 9781770461642
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Drawn & Quarterly - September 23rd, 2014

Will Boast, author of Epilogue

A Room of One's Own is honored to bring Will Boast to our store for a reading from his stunning new book--his first memoir--Epilogue.
A few short years after Will Boast lost his mother and his only sibling (a younger brother), his father tragically died of alcoholism. At twenty four years of age, Boast found himself utterly alone. Although a heartbreaking loss, EPILOGUE is really about the remarkable aftermath.

While numbly carrying out the matters of his father’s estate, Boast discovered documents revealing a second family: his father’s ex-wife and two sons in England—brothers he never knew he had. Still reeling from the loss of his family, Boast is forced to re-evaluate his childhood and to look for hints of the man his father had been in his youth. Struggling against the stalwart example of his father, who never indulged his own pain, Boast asks “What am I do to do with mine?”

Moving between the Midwest and England, from scenes of his youth to the tentative discovery of his new family, Boast turns the searing gaze of a novelist on himself, writing with great beauty about nostalgia, grief, regret, and the slow way his heart is able to open again to a new kind of love.

A talented jazz musician, Will Boast’s memoir reads like an elegiac melody, transforming his astounding story into a profoundly resonant family narrative; as Jamie Quatro writes, “Boast’s story will break your heart; his prose will make it sing.”

Epilogue Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780871403810
Availability: Special Order
Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation - September 15th, 2014

Mark Allister, author of Chasing the Light: The Cloud Cult Story

A Room of One's Own is delighted to welcome Mark Allister, biographer of one of the Midwest's most heartfelt indie acts, for a reading from his book about the power of Cloud Cult.  

“Cloud Cult’s grand, unkempt indie rock is at once jam band, emo, and avant-garde. Their songs, born out of personal tragedy, are otherworldly lessons in being human.” —Pitchfork

During the past decade, Minnesota-grown Cloud Cult has become one of the most inspirational indie bands, with a deeply devoted fan base and an approach to music and the environment that is hard not to admire. Beyond a musical biography, Chasing the Light tells the story of the heartbreaking yet affirming journey of lead singer and songwriter Craig Minowa and delves into the career of the band known by music lovers as the least cynical and most idealistic band in the country.

Tracing Cloud Cult’s rise to critical acclaim, author Mark Allister details the band’s defining moments, beginning with the death of Craig and Connie Minowa’s two-year-old son and the hundreds of songs that grew out of the tragic loss. Allister describes the band’s unique philosophy and principles, including how Minowa created a zero carbon footprint for the band’s recording and touring, adopting DIY and green-sustainable practices well before the ideas became mainstream. Allister also presents a first-person account of a day in the life of a quintessential indie band and conveys the immense emotional impact of Cloud Cult’s albums and live shows. Described by a fan in the book as “the anthem for the soul searcher in us all,” Cloud Cult’s music and message are both stirring and sincere.

Featuring rarely seen photographs from Cloud Cult’s history and passionate testimonials by fans, Chasing the Light is a testament to the profound influence one band’s personal evolution can have on its followers and on indie rock aficionados in search of beauty, meaning, and redemption.

Mark Allister is professor of English, environmental studies, and American studies at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. He hosts a weekly radio show, Prof Rock with Mark Allister. Mark Wheat is a regular host on Minnesota Public Radio’s The Current.

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Chasing the Light: The Cloud Cult Story Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9780816696536
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: University of Minnesota Press - October 1st, 2014

Jen Rudin, author of Confessions of a Casting Director

A Room of One's Own is looking forward to welcoming film industry professional Jen Rudin to our store for a reading, book-signing, and--most exciting for those aspiring actors out there--Q&A! She will be discussing her new book Confessions of a Casting Director: Help Actors Land Any Role with Secrets from Inside the Audition Room.

 

Jen Rudin began acting professionally at age 8 following her childhood obsession with The Brady Bunch. Now, as an award-winning Casting Director with over 30 years in show business, she is often asked the same questions from aspiring actors:

 

Do I need an agent?

How do I nail an audition?

Are classes or degrees important?

How do I build my performing arts resume?

 

For the first time, Rudin answers these questions and many more in Confessions of a Casting Director: Help Actors Land Any Role with Secrets from Inside the Audition Room (It Books; trade paperback original; $19.99; on-sale: December 17, 2013). Rudin’s first book is an informative, comprehensive guide on how to succeed in the film, television, and theatre businesses, as well as commercials and voiceovers, reality television, and the growing trend of web series and instant YouTube fame.

 

Confessions of a Casting Director is packed with information that aspiring actors clamor for. This up-to-the-minute advice from an expert who has worked in every facet of the entertainment industry is essential for anyone pursuing an acting career, or for stage parents with children who are interested in acting. The book covers such topics as:

 

·         finding an agent or manager and the difference between the two

·         detailed audition preparation with tips for musical theater, television (including commercials and reality TV) and film, voiceovers, animated movies, and web series

·         using technology and social media to your advantage

·         the demanding world of child acting and how parents can help their children thrive

·         the pros and cons of living in New York versus LA

·         and how to turn a call-back into an offer for the role.

 

Every actor should walk into an audition room feeling confident and prepared, and Rudin’s book is full of the dos and don’ts and insider secrets to help turn rejection into that first big break. Complete with checklists, easy-to-follow game plans, and advice from real actors, agents, and industry professionals, Confessions of a Casting Director is like having a private audition coach in your back pocket.

Confessions of a Casting Director: Help Actors Land Any Role with Secrets from Inside the Audition Room Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9780062292094
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: It Books - December 17th, 2013

Scott Braucht, author of Into the Light

A Room of One's Own is proud to welcome local author Scott Braucht to read from his brave memoir about struggling with depression as a middle aged man.

Scott Braucht has owned Scott Braucht & Associates, LLC, a capital campaign fundraising business in Madison, Wisconsin, for eight years. With an MBA in management, marketing and entrepreneurship from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he also serves as an adjunct faculty member to Madison area colleges and universities.

It is estimated that over 20.9 million men in the United States suffer from mental illness and mood disorders. While improvements in overall mental and physical conditions have been made, the various diseases can still be tough to treat. Along with medical and psychological therapies, social stigma remains a quiet killer as men seek to recover.

Scott Braucht was forty years old when he recognized several symptoms associated with his own mental illness: lethargy, anxiety, irrational fear, not merely a lack of energy but exhaustion, and mood swings that varied from low to very low and limited occasions of hypomania. He sought information and did exhaustive research to learn more about these diseases. While a lot of clinical information existed, limited information was available from persons who had written their individual stories. First-person accounts did not seem to exist. With as much time and energy as possible, he has chronicled his story in this book. Most of the story occurs during the time he was suffering from depression and bipolar disease. With help from the medical and counseling community, he was able to step out and recover.

Into the Light: A Middle-Aged Man's Recovery from Depression Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781595982520
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Henschelhaus Publishing, Inc. - July 1st, 2013

Barbara Wieser and Rosa Sanchez, Returned Peace Corps Volunteers from Crimea

Crimean Tatars and the Russian Occupation of Crimea: a presentation held at A Room of One's Own.

Who are the Crimean Tatars? What has the Russian occupation of their homeland meant in their lives?
Please join returned Peace Corps Volunteers Barb Wieser and Rosa Sanchez for a presentation about the Crimean Tatars and their future. From 2009 to 2013, Barb lived in the Crimean Tatar community of Ak Mechet on the edge of Simferopol and worked in the Crimean Tatar Library on culture and language preservation. She is in daily contact with her Crimean Tatar family and friends and will talk about Crimean Tatar history and culture, how the Russian occupation has affected their lives, what are their hopes and fears for the future, and how the international community can help them.

Following her Peace Corps service in Crimea, Barb returned to Ukraine in the fall of 2013 as a Peace Corps Response Volunteer and was living in Kyiv at the time of the Euromaidan revolution. In February she was evacuated with all of the Ukrainian Peace Corps Volunteers and now resides in Minneapolis. Barb hopes to return to Ukraine this summer.

Rosa Sanchez is a returned Peace Corps Volunteer from Crimea. She just celebrated her graduation from the University of Wisconsin - Madison in Social Work.

Judith Gwinn Adrian, author of In Warm Blood

A Room of One's Own welcomes Judith Gwinn Adrian, co-author of the book In Warm Blood with DarRen Morris. She will be joined by Opal Tomashevska and Derek Johnson, who will give spoken word presentations on the book and Al Felice, who will read some of DarRen's words.

About the Book: In this fictionalized biography, Judy and DarRen share stories of privilege and prison, hurt and heart: epistolary accounts of two people raised in the parallel universes of southeast Wisconsin and northeast Illinois. After serving three months on a fifteen year sentence, Judy’s father’s privilege allowed him to become a physician and medical researcher. Some of his subsequent research involved human experimentation with prisoners. And DarRen, at age 17, was sentenced to life in prison, with a first possible parole date set at 100 years. He has now served more than half of his life in Wisconsin maximum security prisons, becoming a Rastafarian and a uniquely talented artist.

Author's bios: DarRen Morris

 

Seventeen. That was my age when I was sentenced and I have now served more than half of my life in maximum security Wisconsin prisons.
My sentence? Life in prison. My crime? I was party to the unintentional death of an innocent man. Although I was involved in this death, I am not a murderer. I know this in my heart, in my regret for this loss of life.

I am an artist. I paint and donate my works of art. In the years to come I want to create art that will help save youth from making thoughtless choices. I also want to create art that will help you on the outside understand what we face on the inside – the very real need for prison reform in Wisconsin and elsewhere – the very real need to involve more people in working toward prisoner rehabilitation rather than punishment. Most of us on the inside are both perpetrators and victims. Hurt people hurt people.

Judith Gwinn Adrian

I teach undergraduate and graduate classes at Edgewood College, Madison, WI, and support the work toward holistic alternatives to incarceration. When I completed my Ph.D. (University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1993) in adult education, I understood that adult learning is about change and about the belief that all of us continue to grow throughout our lifespans (and beyond…who knows).

In Warm Blood (Color Edition: Prison & Privilege, Hurt & Heart Cover Image
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ISBN: 9781595982728
Availability: Special Order
Published: HenschelHAUS Publishing - December 15th, 2013

Offsite Event: Janet Mock at Union South

A Room of One's Own is honored to be a part of Janet Mock's book tour. We will be selling her incredible memoir at her UW-Madison LGBT Campus Center-organized public talk.

Janet Mock is a writer, transgender activist and the founder of the #Girlslikeus project. Her memoir, REDEFINING REALNESS: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More, was published in February 2014. Her visit will include a reception and book signing, public talk and a professional development workshop exploring the navigation of journalism and corporate America as a person of color.

Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More Cover Image
$24.99
ISBN: 9781476709123
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Atria Books - February 4th, 2014

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