One year ago this week, I agreed to Rosemary Wilmot’s idea to create the book that became Venice Rising: Aqua Granda, Pandemic, Rebirth. She and I had met via email because of Venice blog posts that brought us together and because Rosemary had enjoyed my first anthology, First Spritz Is Free. She pitched her idea to me of a collection of stories by Venetians living through the flooding and the pandemic. It was April 7, 2020, that I said yes to begin our amazing odyssey! Here’s my reply to Rosemary:
>>>I LOVE your idea for a new spritz book. And it sounds like you have some excellent connections that we should follow up with. What do you think–Shall we reach out to people who live in Venice/Veneto and gather those essays first? Then reach out to other Venice lovers? I think the most powerful stories might come from people living in the city/region during these events.
I’ve drafted this “pitch” to send out to people to solicit essays. I want to capture their stories of the hardships and obstacles but also make sure the stories aren’t all focusing on loss and trauma. We want readers to keep reading and hear about the lessons learned, the jewel moments, the intimacy or insight or growth that came from these times. Whenever I write something, I always consider it a draft and very much welcome others’ input, so please feel free to share your thoughts for revision. <<<
All profits from Venice Rising are donated, and at this point I’ve donated $1,673.12 USD to We are here Venice, Venice Calls, and No Grandi Navi. Please consider celebrating our Venice Rising anniversary by buying a copy of the book for yourself or a friend so that we can keep those donations rolling in!
By the way, if you’re in the US, may I suggest ordering the book directly from me, rather than Amazon, and I’ll mail it to you. The turnaround time is faster, and a much bigger portion of the profit gets donated (rather than paid to Amazon). You can order from me and pay via PayPal through this website, using the Buy Now button.
If you want more information about how to protect and preserve Venice, here’s a panel discussion from the World Monuments Fund, March 25, 2021, with panelists discussing ways to reshape and rethink tourism in this unique and beloved city of ours.