National Endowment for the Arts Announces Random House as Publisher of Operation Homecoming Anthology
Random House Publishing Group to publish Operation Homecoming: Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Homefront in the Words of U.S. Troops and Their Families in September 2006
December 15, 2005
Washington, D.C. - NEA Chairman Dana Gioia today announced the publisher of Operation Homecoming: Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Home Front, in the Words of U.S. Troops and Their Families, the anthology of wartime writings that resulted from the NEA National Initiative, Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience, a unique program that preserves the stories and reflections of U.S. military personnel and their families. To be released by Random House Publishing Group in September 2006, Operation Homecoming will feature an estimated 100 writings by troops and their families, from letters and emails, to short stories, memoirs, and poems.
“Our nation’s men and women in the Armed Forces – and their families – offer unique and important voices that enlarge our understanding of the wartime experience,” said NEA Chairman Dana Gioia. “We’re privileged to have an editor of the stature of Andrew Carroll organizing their stories into this historic anthology. We are also delighted to have the book released by Random House, one of the country’s leading publishers.”
Andrew Carroll, editor of the bestselling book War Letters: Extraordinary Correspondence from American Wars, is editing Operation Homecoming on a pro-bono basis. War Letters was the result of the Legacy Project, a volunteer effort led by Carroll that encourages Americans to seek out and preserve wartime correspondence before they are lost or destroyed.
Operation Homecoming springs from the NEA’s national initiative Operation Homecoming, which, brought distinguished writers – including Tobias Wolff, Tom Clancy, Jeff Shaara, Marilyn Nelson, Bobbie Ann Mason, and Mark Bowden – to 25 domestic and overseas military installations from April 2004 through July 2005. Operation Homecoming also offered an open call for writing submissions to troops who have served since 9/11, along with their spouses and families. That call resulted in more than 10,000 pages of submissions.
For Operation Homecoming, a panel of 14 renowned authors reviewed thousands of pages of submissions for consideration in the anthology. The panel selected anthology writings based on literary excellence, historic importance, and a desire to present a diversity of genres. No writings were excluded based on point of view.
After soliciting more than 200 commercial and non-profit publishers, the NEA chose Random House to publish Operation Homecoming. Random House was selected based on the quality of its publishing in relevant areas, the experience of the editor and other staff, its marketing plan, and its overall ability to produce and promote the book successfully.
Operation Homecoming will be released in the fall of 2006. The book will also be given to military installations, schools, and libraries.
Operation Homecoming has been administered by the NEA in partnership with the Southern Arts Federation. The initiative was made possible by generous support from The Boeing Company, which has helped the NEA bring numerous quality arts and arts education programs to military communities nationwide and overseas.
About the National Endowment for the Arts
This year, the National Endowment for the Arts marks its 40th anniversary of leadership in the arts. The NEA is a public agency dedicated to supporting excellence in the arts – both new and established – bringing the arts to all Americans, and providing leadership in arts education. Established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government, the Arts Endowment is the largest national funder of the arts, bringing great art to all 50 states, including rural areas, inner cities, and military bases.
National Endowment for the Arts · an independent federal