Writing a Book


My journey of writing a book began in a writing class at Naropa University during the fall semester of 2013. It was my third time taking the class and I needed to make sure I did well on the final assignment to pass it. Our final assignment was to turn in a manuscript of the work we had done during the semester. I wasn’t impressed with the semester’s work I had done, so I inquired about writing one paper for the final assignment. The teacher mentioned it would be firmly graded and had to be the same length as the final manuscript (about 20-25 pages).

I had in mind writing about my experience as a trumpet player playing the bugle call Taps, which I performed at over 500 ceremonies honoring fallen service members during my 10 year period as an Army Musician (2002-2012). The idea came from an ex-girlfriend suggesting I write something about Taps (in 2007). The six year gap of action was enough time for the idea to take root, because I wrote 26 pages in three days, finishing just in time to turn it in (literally finishing before class was starting).

I received an A- on the paper and now, five years later with friends and the Naropa Writing Center, I’m slowly dissecting each paragraph from the first draft/paper, and thinking about how to give future readers the full experience of what I had in association with Taps.

Here are the chapters I have to expand:


Introduction of Taps

  1. My Trumpet History

  2. My Army History

  3. First Performance of Taps

  4. Taps in Iraq

  5. Taps for Medal of Honor Recipient Silvestre S. Herrera

  6. Taps for Homeless Veterans

  7. Taps Related Photo Collections


*The photo used for this post was when I decided to play Taps every night before going to bed. That went on for 21 days in honor of the 21 Gun Salute. (Photo taken at Earth Yoga Boulder)