DRIFTWOOD, an autobiography

The time has come, the walrus said...

Project visual DRIFTWOOD, an autobiography
End date
Out of €3,000
116 %

DRIFTWOOD, an autobiography

I was ten years old the day I first addressed the blank page of my small blue diary as if it were a friend : « Hello. I am sorry I did not write before. I am writing in you so I can write a Book someday ». That was September 12th 1980. Today is April 20th 2022. I am finally ready. Driftwood is the first volume in an autobiographical tryptic I have written, and tells the story (true from my point of view) of my childhood. It is based on my trunkfull of journals, on family stories told and retold, and on memories. I wrote it by hand first, inspired by a thick, blank book with a biblical air to it, called My Life Story, that I bought in a small bookstore in Semur en Auxois. Then I typed it out, word for word. Then I revised it…rewrote, re-read it...In the gloom of one Bourgogne winter I spent a hundred hours translating it into French. Every few months since 2016, I have returned to it, to work on it, sometimes feverishly, sometimes slowly and with puzzlement, sometimes smiling, sometimes tearful. Even on the tearful days, the process has always been satisfying. Excerpt from Driftwood: "As far as art, and the imagination went, we were given responsibility very early on. Once, when we were very little living in Guadalajara, friends gave us a television, out of pity. Without a moment's hesitation, Mama threw it out the window. It broke into ten pieces on the sidewalk below. We stood at the open window and looked solemnly down at the pieces. Beauty and poetry were to be found in our own life, in the midst of material poverty and chaos. Period." Over the past year, I have sent the manuscript to a handful of publishers in Canada and the United States, and received constructive, encouraging feedback. The most concrete of all, is the response of one freelance editor, Mark Leichliter, based in the United States: "Thank you for your submission to bioStories. This piece is nothing short of remarkable. There are moments of truly fine writing, and the larger story of your childhood is nothing short of fascinating. (…). I'd welcome the chance to work with you on tailoring/shaping the piece a bit for potential publication, sharpening its focus in parts, and helping to ensure that the sparkling brilliance of your language is consistent throughout". (I said Yes) We began a back and forth process around Chapter One (7000 words), which involved an in depth critique/revision, two zoom meetings, two sessions of written feedback, all generously provided by Mark without a fee. As his questions guide me well and his angle makes sense to me, I have decided to pursue this exchange.

Allocation of funds

The goal of the crowdfunding is to cover the cost of preparing two manuscripts for international publishers. How the funds collected will be used: English Version 1500€: The fee of freelance editor Mark Leichliter, creator of BIOSTORIES Magazine, who will accompany me in the revision and correction of the existing 43 000 word manuscript DRIFTWOOD, as well as to facilitate the meeting with a writing agent and publishers. My work with him will finished be the day I have a « new » manuscript to send to a revised list of publishers. French Version 1500€ (700€ of which will pay for a support to refine my translation from english to french 800€ of which will pay for a final correction of the revised, translated manuscript, to ensure an error-free, well formatted Franch version) With your help, by Christmas, I could have my two manuscripts ready to send to publishers in the United States, Canada and France. A dream. Photo credit Portraits of Sky by Alexandra Karam Photos of manuscripts by Laurence Guillot


MP3 of Chapter One read aloud by the author


For a contribution of 5€ and up, you will receive an MP3 of Chapter One read aloud by the author

Estimated delivery: August 2022

Invitation to exclusive reading in Bourgogne France


  • 9 contributions
For a contribution of 50€ and up, you will be invited to an exclusive chapter reading event (French and English) in Bourgogne, France, with good wine!

Estimated delivery: August 2022

Make a donation

Give what I want