ARMISTICE DAY, VETERANS DAY & THE MARVINS

Armistice Day began Nov. 11th, 1918 when WWI officially suspended combat on the 11th day of the 11th month on the 11th hour. In time, the name of Armistice Day became Veterans Day in 1954, honoring all those who served in the military on Nov. 12th.
For the Marvin family, there was not a single military conflict in which the family ranks were not involved and seriously depleted, going all the back to the American Revolution. As Lee Marvin liked to say, “It’s my country. We fought for it, we Marvins.” However, since Armistice Day, began with the end of WWI, the involvement began a little closer in Lee’s lineage, which meant his father, Lamont Waltham “Monte” Marvin.

Monte Marvin in his WWI uniform.

Monte was a 1st, Lt. during the war and in charge of a unit in the 302nd Engineers stationed in France. He later served in WWII as a battalion Sgt, again in France, having resigned his commission. As he wryly told a reporter years later, “I was too young for the first war and to old for the second, so I ended up in both.”

An older Monter Marvin in uniform during WWII.

The Marvin men all served in WWII, with Lee’s brother Robert serving in the ground crew of the Army Air Corp. and Lee seeing the most combat as a Marine in the USMC’s island hopping campaign in the Pacific.
All told, the Marvins did their part to earn respect and recognition for their duty in the service. This being Veterans’ Day — and a very special one, as it’s the 100th anniversary of the Armistice signing of WWI — take a moment some time today and remember those who served. Their contribution deserves our thanks.
How to show that remembrance? One way is to read Lee Marvin Point Blank and discover in the actor’s own words via never-before-seen letters exactly what he experienced firsthand and how he really felt about the war at the time he went through it. You won’t be disappointed. Happy Veterans Day.
-Dwayne Epstein

Monte Marvin (left) and son Lee photographed for LIFE Magazine in the 1960s.

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NANCY PELOSI: ONCE & FUTURE SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE

Nancy Pelosi made history when she was sworn-in as the first female Speaker of the House back in 2007. Because the Democrats regained the House after the recent mid-term election, Pelosi is now poised to become the next Speaker when she’s sworn-in in January.
What does that have to do with this blog, you might ask? Well, while I was still struggling to find a publisher for Lee Marvin Point Blank, I lucked into a freelance position at Lucent Books, writing young adult biographies for their People in The News Series. Several were on assignment and several were pitched by yours truly. Nancy Pelosi was a successful pitch.

The cover of my bio for Lucent’s People in The News series on Nancy Pelosi.

She has of course been demonized by the Republican Party almost as much as Hillary Clinton but the reason I was able to successfully pitch her as a bio subject was not just because of her historical status, but her amazing life as well. She is the daughter of a career-long politician (Mayor Tommy D’Alesandro) out of Baltimore; she entered the political arena because of a deathbed promise to a friend; she kept the GOP from dismantling both Social Security and Medicare….Fascinating stuff!
It also taught me a great deal more about biographical writing that help immeasurably with my research and writing of Lee Marvin Point Blank. How? Each chapter in the People in the News Series requires a theme that readers can recognize and possibly expand upon on their own. It’s a guideline that kept me in good stead for Marvin but deceptively hard for a young adult audience when writing about the complexities of Congress. I had also learned to write the introduction last as you never know how the book will turn out until it’s done. So, with that in mind, below is the table of contents and intro to my 2009 young adult biography on Nancy Pelosi.
Oh, and Donald Trump & the Republicans? If you still think women are not tough enough for the job of public office, with more than 100 women now elected to congress, remember the words of Nancy Pelosi herself when she stated that women were actually tougher than men: “Think of a lioness. You come anywhere near our cubs, you’re dead.”

Table of Contents to NANCY PELOSI.

Page 1 of the introduction.

Conclusion of NANCY PELOSI introduction.

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POINT BLANK HARDCOVER NEAR EXTINCTION!

Dust jacket of LEE MARVIN POINT BLANK hardcover with 2013 Bronze Independent Publisher Book Award sticker (IPPY).

Lee Marvin: Point Blank hardcover version is extremely close to being gone…for good! The paperback will most likely stay in print for a while and the E-book as well.
Yes, I indeed wrote on this site previously that the hardcover is going out of print but I discovered something since then from my publisher, Tim Schaffner. It’s a little thing called ‘returns’ and every time they’re made, the inventory goes up and my royalties stay down. Well, since there is a tipping point in which my royalties go up after a certain number is sold (minus the returns), the hardcover is FINALLY within real striking distance of that number!  This could be the perfect time & reason to get your copy of the hardcover, if you’ve been putting it off until now.
So having said all that, if anybody reading this has been on the fence about buying it, this may very well be the best (and last) time to do so, what with the holidays soon upon us, as well as Veteran’s Day this month. Seriously! If you are now or have ever been thinking about it, here are some thoughts that might help you decide.

  1. Since it will be going out of print soon, purchasing it now will ensure that you have a true collectible. Once it’s gone, it’s gone and like the dodo bird, it won’t be coming back. The Amazon link is above but Barnes & Noble (linked here in blue) works just as well. However, PLEASE don’t buy it on Ebay. After market retailers are a rip-off.
  2. Contractually, the way my royalties were set up, a certain tipping point had to be reached before the percentage would go up and that point has FINALLY been reached. In other words, buying the book would be a great way for any friend, family member, or colleague to help yours truly if you’re so inclined. Hopefully you are. By the way the Amazon/Barnes & Noble discount prices do not effect my royalty, so take advantage of that guilt-free offer.

    Without the dust jacket, the LEE MARVIN POINT BLANK hardcover has this exclusive graphic image.

  3. I am not in a position to offer any special deals of any kind but I can offer U.S. buyers  a little something special to sweeten the deal. If you do indeed buy the hardcover, let me know and I can send you a personally signed postcard as a keepsake, bookmark, what-have-you, which is as close to having a signed copy of the book as you can possibly get! They are in limites supply as well and once I run out of them, that’s all there is. The postcard is from the A&E Biography of Lee I was interviewed for and provided much of the graphics back in ’01 when the book was still in the research stage. They are in limited supply but I’ll put it in an enevelope & pay the postage if you reply to this message. Your info would be kept in confidence as I;m the only one who sees the e-mail address.
    So, what are you waiting for? Get your copy at the links above, TODAY!
    – Dwayne Epstein

    Front and back images of the postcard promoting A&E’s Biography episode on Lee Marvin.

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