Crude, sometimes uncomfortable, but realistic

Interview with the author by Greg Wyss

sit down and have a beer again is an unfiltered publication of poems, short stories, and narratives that portray life in the 1960s and 1970s. Why was it important to republish these creative works in an anthology?

Rich Soos, editor of the literary magazine Cholla Needles, was the impetus for this collection. He was the publisher of my 1977 chapter book “Sit Down and Have a Beer” and he approached me in early 2021 and suggested that we republish my original chapter book along with all the other poems and stories of mine that were ever published. in the 1970s. We both felt that the poems and stories had stood the test of time and were relevant today. The small press scene of the 1970s was an exciting and creative period in American literature. Unfortunately, so little work and so few literary journals have been collected and preserved for the historical record. Hopefully this collection will inspire other writers, poets, and publishers of that era to do the same.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

Each poem and story in this collection aims to shed an honest light on the emotions, vulnerabilities, and struggles everyday people face. I was in my early twenties when I wrote these pieces and they are stark, sometimes uncomfortable, but realistic expressions of a young man trying to find himself in the 1970s.

What do you hope readers take away from your book?

Although the poems and stories reflect the times, my hope is that the reader will find the themes, honest sentiments, and personal struggles as relevant today as they were then.

What is the next book you are working on and when will it be available?

My current focus is poetry and short stories. I am working on pieces that reflect the times we live in and are written from the perspective of a person who has lived a full life and still has something to say. Stay tuned!

Author Links: Good reads | Website

The poems and stories that make up sit down and have a beer, the first chapter here, were in a booklet published in 1977 by the Realities Library. The stories and poems had been published in small press magazines impacting a small cadre of creatives in the country in those days.

The Small Press world of those days was the forerunner of the Internet: crazy editors and publishers who believed that established publications had simply lost touch with the creative reality of our nation. And, like the Internet, small print shops were eventually bought out by the rich who found that the best way to beat them was to buy them.

The second chapter of the book contains the other poems that were published in these magazines but never collected until now.

The third chapter represents a small sample of When life was like a cucumberthe great novel set in the early 1970s that tells the story of a young man’s journey of self-discovery and sexual awakening as he tries to find his place in
America after the sixties. The full novel is available here on Amazon.

Leave a Comment