Today’s guest blogger is YA author Alissa Grosso. Alissa has written stories about trees, women in gorilla suits and people with unusual skin colors. Her first novel, The Subrosa Semesters, will be published in 2011 by Flux. We’re appearing July 10 on a panel with author Gloria Mallette at the Monroe County Book Expo.
It’s only recently that I’ve begun to identify myself as a writer. I’ve written for newspapers for a few years and published a few short stories, but the prospect of having my first novel published next year makes it real for me. That said, in my family I’ve always been considered The Writer. As such, long ago I was charged with writing the story of my uncle and godfather.
My Uncle Doug has lived an interesting life, and there are seemingly countless anecdotes about him. In high school he skipped gym class for a semester and his grade actually went up. Also while he was in high school, he started an underground newspaper that lampooned many of the teachers and somehow managed to avoid getting expelled from school. In college he is rumored to have skipped class in favor of playing pool all day. With one of his friends he started a tow truck business. The truck got stuck in a ditch on their first job and the business fell apart shortly thereafter. Thus followed a seemingly countless series of jobs in just about every field imaginable.
Due to his interesting life, my family has always felt Uncle Doug was worthy of a book, and even had a title picked out, a direct quote from one of his friends, “There’s a Little Bit of Doug in All of Us.” Fiction has always been my first love, and as much as I love my Uncle and his crazy life, I prefer to make up stories. So, I never got around to writing his life story, though I did briefly toy with writing a fictionalized account that would also include aliens and perhaps some form of mind control. (I was reading a lot of Kurt Vonnegut and Philip K. Dick at this time.)
Of course, it may be that the time is just not right for There’s a Little Bit of Doug in All of Us. Every few months or so my uncle seems to add a new chapter.