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Quite the World, Isn't It?

Book deals -- but not mine

Some good news for my former LA Times colleagues Chris Goffard and Sonia Nazario -- Publishers Lunch reports they both have new book deals.

"LA Times reporter and author of Snitch Jacket Chris Goffard's You Will See Fire, about an American priest in Kenya who takes on the country's brutal dictatorship as well as the Catholic church while fighting social injustice, only to die under mysterious circumstances, to Alane Mason at Norton, by Lydia Wills at Paradigm and Seth Jaret at Jaret Entertainment (NA). UK/Translation: Philip Patterson at Marjacq Scripts"

Snitch Jacket was a solid debut -- character-driven and evocative of the part of Orange County that falls far far outside the upscale image.

Nazario focuses next on women.

"Enrique's Journey author Sonia Nazario's book, intimately documenting five women as they deal with a major social issue, including poverty, hunger, prison reform, and gang violence, to David Ebershoff at Random House, by Bonnie Nadell of Frederick Hill Bonnie Nadell Agency (World English)."

Love to see this.
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Helping ourselves

One of the reassuring things that came after the mass layoffs across Tribune -- owner of the Los Angeles Times, my former employer -- is the way so many of us have come together with a sense of mutual aid. A flood of "what do we do now?" and "Anyone have any idea what that letter meant?" emails led me to launch a Yahoo group for ExLATers, now closing in on 100 members. It's been a great tool for pooling knowledge and unscrambling often contradictory bits of information -- especially after Tribune entered bankruptcy.

Elsewhere, folks have launched a web site to track where former Trib employees across the properties have moved to on the web. This one is fairly new and is a good and growing showcase of the breadth and depth of talent cut loose in this crisis (thanks to LAObserved for posting it, and ExLATer Saul Daniels for alerting our Yahoo group).

And now former photographers at the LAT are joining with former shooters for the Long Beach Press Telegram and Santa Clarita Signal in their own freelance photographer network. My former colleague Matt Randall put it together, and says he hopes to have a website live next week linking to all the photographers. It augments nicely the online work our fellow ExLATer Bret Levy has been doing with webinars at WriteThru.

These are all innovative ways to address the problems we face as individual journalists. The future is ours, kids, let's keep fighting for it ....
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