It’s not always easy finding a break as a writer, especially when just starting out. Sometimes the rejection letter pile becomes overwhelming, but a local man has created a new opportunity to find a way into print.
Writer and U.S. Army vet Dave Meisburger is looking for 10 more Oregon writers to be published in his book “2018 Poetry and Short Story Anthology – Oregon Writers Edition.” Not only is this opportunity free, but Meisburger is covering the complete cost of publishing and, if and after costs are reimbursed from the book’s procees, he plans to give each contributing writer one percent of further sales. His goal is to have 100 new writers in the book.
“My plan for this initial anthology work is to be comprised of unpublished, first-time Oregon-based writers (excluding myself of course) of any age so that they can then properly acclaim themselves as being published — and, no, there's no particular 'theme' I'm trying to encourage at this time, just 100 percent free-thinking creativity,” Meisburger said.
He’s looking for all appropriate subject matter for the 350-page edition, but discourages foul language and lewd topics.
Poetry submissions should be enough to fill two standard 8.5" x 11" single-spaced typewritten pages, so either one longer poem or several short ones. Short story written content has two categories — 16 will be accepted in the fewer than 3,000-word category and four will be accepted in the 3,000-6,000 word category.
Meisburger said he hopes that this can be an annual project of 100 new writers each year.
He asks that interested writers hold off on submitting their writing just yet. The first step is to contact Meisburger at AnthologyWorks@aol.com, then he will respond with further instructions. This offer is valid through the end of February, but his goal is to have all of his contributing writers gathered by next week. The only requirements are that writers live in Oregon and that anyone under the age of 18 have parental consent.
“I want to help people out who may not have been as fortunate as me in getting published,” Meisburger said.
Meisburger said he’s been writing his entire life and learned from his grandmother, who also taught him to read and write. In his first book of published poetry, “Reflections — Poems and Missives Celebrating Love and Life,” he dedicates nearly half of the anthology to his grandmother’s poetry.
He said she was always encouraging him to publish his work, but he felt his writing was too personal to do so. After her death and the end to his time in the military, he finally granted her wish.
His company, Anthology Works LLC, is set to be finalized this week. The business is intended to help writers and people in charitable ways.
Another project of his is a collaboration with a fellow writer Wendee Kunzler to publish the stories of 16 cancer survivors titled “Survivor Tales — Part 1.” Writers are given 10,000 words to relate their stories. This offer is also valid through February. Once cost of publication is covered, Meisburger intends to give each contributing writer 3 percent of sales and donate 50 percent of sales to the American Cancer Society.
He said the intention of this publication is that people suffering from cancer will find hope and inspiration in the book.
“I’ve always done charity work throughout my life,” Meisburger said. “Both of these works help people in different ways.”
When not writing or working on his start-up, Meisburger spends his time as a live-in caregiver for a disabled U.S. Army retired vet.
—Contact Ashland freelance writer Caitlin Fowlkes at Caitlin.firstname.lastname@example.org.