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Word Patriots

Mark Seinfelt

Word Patriots – Turk Turns the Tables: The fiction and nonfiction of Mark Seinfelt (part one)

This week on Word, my recording technician Donnie “Turk” Schnars ousts me from my interviewer’s chair to discuss my first two books “Final Drafts: suicides of world-famous authors” and “Henry Boulanger of Mushannon Town: A Novel of the American Revolution” with two of my previous guests, novelist and memoirist Elisabeth Lanser Rose, author of “Body Sharers” and “For the Love of a Dog,” and poet Jason Charnesky, who has penned the lyrics and librettos for many works by the composer Bruce Trinkley, including a trilogy of one-act comic operas: EVE’S ODDS, GOLDEN APPLE, and CLEO, a full-length opera, YORK: THE VOICE OF FREEDOM and SANTA ROSALIA, a cantata based on a painting by Fernando Botero. Elisabeth is up first with her review of “Final Drafts.” My study of the phenomenon of literary suicide in the Twentieth Century was published by Prometheus Books in 1999 and was chosen as an alternate selection of the Reader’s Subscription Book Club in 2004. Randall Curb wrote in “Book Page”: “Final Drafts is an intriguing bedside-table book. The stories are necessarily grim and disturbing but the subjects rarely fail to fascinate.” In “Rambles Net Reviews,” Gregg Winkler stated: “Final Drafts is an amazing look at the mind-boggling frequency in which influential writers take their own lives. By examining writers spanning the entire 20th Century, Seinfelt takes his readers on some of the most uplifting and depressing trips I have been on in a long time…. It’s a fine piece of writing Seinfelt has produced, and despite one unhappy ending after another, ‘Final Drafts’ is inspiring in a strange way. Seinfelt shows us time and again the thin line between the height of one’s life and the depth of one’s despair. And that is perhaps a task that many of the writers portrayed in Seinfelt’s book would have been quite envious of.” Jason follows with his review of my first published novel “Henry Boulanger of Mushannon Town,” which won the 2010 Pinnacle Book Achievement Award in the category of historical fiction. “The Mid-West Review of Books” issued the book a five-star rating: “The new world was an apt name for it. ‘Henry Boulanger’ tells the story of a shoemaker turned soldier who gets a sample of both worlds. France and Germany are degrading into a cesspool of filth and corruption about to implode on itself, so Henry during his travels finds much to enjoy in the less spoiled and more optimistic land of America and soon finds himself fighting to sever all ties to his past world. ‘Henry Boulanger’ is a fine piece of historical fiction and would do well for those who enjoy Revolutionary War era-based tales.” After Jason finishes his review, he and Turk discuss his friendship with me over the years and my other works, and then I come on to read from “Henry.” If you would like to know more about Mark Seinfelt’s books be sure to visit his website: Please also visit the Amazon page for Elisabeth’s “For the Love of a Dog”: To see and hear works by Bruce Trinkley and Jason Charnesky visit