A Very Fine Update

VERY FINE PEOPLE is almost here. An update for subscribers to The Reframe, a publication date, and a deadline for patrons and those who would like to be patrons.

A Very Fine Update

I've got a book coming out as you may or may not know. If you're interested in this book, read on. If you're not, just close this browser window and go and do something you enjoy, like skipping rocks or crochet or making small batch bourbon in your basement, and wait for the next newsletter, which will be along this weekend, and nobody will be worse off than they were before.

Anyway, it has a publication date. That date is June 4, 2024.

Watch this space for presale links and instructions on how to buy it in all the places you buy books, later this month, probably.

The book is called Very Fine People: Confessions of an American Fool, and it's a book of essays. Most of it has been posted online here and there over the years, specifically over the years 2016-2023. A lot of it was first posted right here in this newsletter, in fact. A bit of it is new, and all of it has been repurposed and rearranged to make a more cohesive whole, with new connective bits written here and there in between to hopefully make the reading experience as smooth as skating on new ice.

Very Fine People is about what it was like for me to be a comfortable person forced to recalibrate his understanding of the world in the wake of the Trump election and the rise of his MAGA cult, along with other events before and after that proved in unignorable ways that the conservative spirit had always been far closer to fascism than I had ever believed, possessed by a desire for supremacy present not only in the hearts and minds of tiki-torch Nazis and KKK demonstrators, but also in the hearts and minds of so many nice upstanding people who were (and in many cases still are) so close to so many of us; present in the way power is arranged and mediated in our institutions; and present in the multitude of tiny ways so many of us, myself including, consciously, unconsciously, or subconsciously accommodate that supremacist desire in order to maintain our own comfort.

It's about the slow process of an American fool (that's me) putting the pieces of a shattered worldview back together into something closer to the uncomfortable truth. It's about naming my nation's foundational lies, and thinking about the process of repair necessary to repair anything that's broken, and about the ways supremacy sabotages that process in order to maintain its blameless domination, and about all the ways so many comfortable people accommodate that sabotage. Finally, it's about naming the tools available to us all to fight that sabotage and that accommodation in order to become the sort of people who fix broken things.

So that's what the book is about. And the book is happening because of you, readers and subscribers and patrons, all, so I thought it would be a good idea to give all of you an update on how it is going.

The editing is finished and the pages are being designed. That's going to take a bit of time, but not much time, and then I'll have something to upload, which means I need to set a publication date (that's June 4 in case you missed it) and posting presale links, and letting you know how you can get it in all the places that have books, and that's when the fun really starts—by which I mean that's when I notice things that I'd still like to tweak but I can't anymore, because when you are publishing a book at a certain point you have to stop futzing with it.

Here's the part that's important right now. There is a deadline coming in 2 weeks—March 14.

That deadline is when the pages are locked and there's no more futzing. No more futzing means no more adding words, including adding people to thank in the acknowledgements.

That might matter for some of you.

Some of you are patrons of this newsletter at the founding member level, which means that you're considered patrons not only of the newsletter but of Very Fine Things. This means you're going to get a free book and your name on the acknowledgements page, thanking you for making this happen. However, I haven't heard from all of you. This means that I don't have your address, and I might only have your email address instead of your name. The address we can sort out anytime you want your free book, but the name is something I'm going to potentially have to guess at from your email handle if I don't have it by then. So please, if you care about not appearing in the acknowledgements as flangerjammer343 or whatever, check your spam filter for the email I've sent you, and/or be on the lookout for the one last email I'll be sending to founding members for whom I don't have info yet.

Some of you might be thinking about subscribing or upgrading to the founding member level. You can do that any time you like, and the offer of a book remains in perpetuity before and after the publication date, but the same deadline applies if you want your name in the acknowledgements. Again, cut-off for that is in 2 weeks, which is March 14. Beware those ides.

Some of you aren't interested in the book, or don't care about your name in the acknowledgements, or you can't afford to sponsor right now, or you just want to wait until the book is available to order or preorder. For you, this is really easy stuff. Just do nothing until it's time for you to do whatever version of "something" it is you want to do.

Here's the button to become a paid subscriber, including a founding member!

And here is the button to do nothing!

That's all. Be careful and kind out there.