In the Nick of Time: Books for Christmas

orderform580I should have been on top of this last week, and it was book orders suddenly coming in from PayPal that reminded me I should remind those who want to send one or both of my books off for Christmas just exactly how to make that happen. 


The short answer is to print the order form found at this link, fill it out, and mail it to me with cash or a check to Fred First for the book total amount plus postage per the order form. Upon receipt, I’ll put the books in the mail within 48 hours, closer to 24 towards the end of the week.

Thanks to those who have enjoyed Slow Road Home and What We Hold In Our Hands: a Slow Road Reader over the past years and are repeat customers sending the books they’ve enjoyed off to relatives and friends across the country.

I can’t say for sure I will, but I tell myself I should get back to some degree of self-promotion for the books (published in 2006 and 2009). Their topics, as folks have pointed out, are not dated and won’t become stale like some books do.

Both books are about rekindling relationships–to nature, to place and to community. Those topics will never not be relevant. I am more convinced than ever that these reparations are crucial. They are also possible, and are underway.

In Slow Road Home I was lost, you might say, having found no nutrients in health care, at 54 thinking there is more to me than my degrees. Where I was began to inform who and what I was, and for the first time, I understood that my identity came from these mountains. All my life, I had been Appalachian. Where would that new understanding lead me?

What We Hold in Our Hands is a book in which I had begun to find my voice and my passion. When it was published in 2009, I had quite a few years of newspaper columns to draw from (Floyd Press, The Road Less Traveled I called the biweekly piece.) In those columns as in other essays and stories, I wonder aloud how I and how we fit in here, how this planet works, and what our grandchildren will see as their legacy from my generation.

Someone called it my “missionary book,” which she explained to mean that it was clear that I hoped to change hearts and minds. She was right, mine being the first heart and mind at bat.

BONUS (or BEATING a DEAD HORSE depending on your point of view): I’m working on a Prezi about and from the books. It will live permanently in the sidebar, and will grow over time to be a rich visual entryway into the text and topics. Or go straight to the Prezi and click around a bit. View full screen for full flavor.

Share this with your friends!

Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. “The Complete Works of Fred First” I like to call it. Though far from complete, that portion of bloviation now between covers. Will I ever get the “more where that came from” into print? And furthermore, could it be tolerated and should such be allowed by the reading public? These are perplexing issues indeed.