Did you read Nickel and Dimed or Bait and Switch by Barbara Ehrenreich? Author Adam Shepard did, and he felt the need to respond. Not long after graduating from Merrimack College in North Andover, MA, Shepard set out on an experiment of his own. With the clothes he was wearing, $25 in cash, and a sleeping bag and tarp in his gym bag, he arrived in Charleston, SC--randomly chosen from a hat full of cities--to see what he could make of himself in one year.
"Socioeconomically speaking, my story is a rebuttal to Barbara Ehrenreich's Nickel and Dimed and Bait and Switch, the books that spoke on the death of the American Dream," Shepard writes in the intro, which you can read in full on Shepard's website, here. "...my story is a search to evaluate if hard work and discipline provide any payoff whatsoever or if they are, as Ehrenreich suggests, futile pursuits."
Shepard set goals for himself. Within one year of striking out for Charleston, he would:
1. own a functional car;
2. live in a furnished apartment;
3. have $2500 to his name; and
4. be at a point where he could either go to school or start his own business as a way of bettering his situation.
Scratch Beginnings is an account of his experience. You can see Shepard talking about the book on YouTube by clicking here. Originally self-published, the book is now being published by Harper Collins and will be available in October (hardcover, $19.95). As with most new books, the author will be on tour. Guess where he's coming?
That's right...to The Book House! On Wednesday, October 22, at 7pm, Adam Shepard will be at The Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza to sign and discuss Scratch Beginnings. Of course, you are warmly invited to attend!
In addition, in anticipation of the signing event, we've asked Shepard to make a guest appearance on our blog. Keep an eye out for his post!