The Face in the Mirror is Not Your Own: A Memoir
University of Idaho Seed Grant
This project will uncover the story of my biological father-a man I'd never met-who died fourteen years ago of heart failure. He was a repeat felon and drug addict with a history of armed robbery and possibly even murder. Simultaneously, it will uncover another story that mirrors my father's. That story is of my son, another man I'd never met, who was also a felon and drug addict, and who, like my father died of drug-related heart failure. He was nineteen. The Face in the Mirror is Not Your Own will draw on primary sources such as prison records, death certificates, autopsy reports, criminal records, photographs, newspaper articles, and interviews as a way of making sense of what it means to lose both your unknown father and unknown son, and what these losses mean to me and my nuclear family.
A seed grant would enable me to conduct primary research and interviews. The interviews and research will take place in early July. I will write for four weeks and deliver a draft of Part I of the book to my agent thereafter. The outcome will be a book, which my agent will submit to publishers in December 2011.