THANKS to John Fennell and the incredible faculty and to the Donald W. Reynolds Journalism Institute at the Missouri School of Journalism for believing in NEXT WAVE and what we’re trying to do at The Sager Group. Your interest and approval feels huge.

Of course, when we put the book together, neither Walt Harrington nor I were actively aware of the particular J school pedigrees of five of our selectees… I’ve taken to calling them Mizzou’s Fab Five of Longform. We swear, it was purely coincidence. That’s the great thing about writing. The cream rises. The truth is on the page. This guys have been consistently good. We had the ability to could choose from a number of notable pieces they’d done.

Of course, Mizzou has produced a pantheon of  killer journos in the past. Judging by the gender breakdown of students at Mizzou and other J schools around the nation, in the future, a lot more of these writing notables are going to be women. In our fledgling efforts as a publisher, The Sager Group has identified a distinct need in the market for outlets that promote and advocate for women who have practiced and/or are dedicated to longform. For this reason we have commissioned what we hope will be a a series of instructive and artful collections about women in longform journalism, through history to contemporary times.

The first book, by Joyce M. Hoffmann, an author and professor out of Old Dominion University in Virginia, will feature overview and examples of women who have been important to journalism as newspaper feature writers. The second book will be a collection great longform magazine pieces and similar book excerpts by women who could be called literary journalists.

One more note on the subject: The modest bequest that allowed the creation of TSG comes my father, Marvin M. Sager.  For nearly fifty years, Dr. Sager made his living by the practice of obstetrics and gynecology; a good number of the women in my small town were his patients. He was a warm man with a good ear and a strong hug who dedicated his life to helping to the health of women and babies. We could never go anywhere without bumping into some patient or another who would want to re-introduce to my dad the child he’d delivered… by now a slobbery toddler or a gangly teen or a strapping college senior. Thus said, I think it only fitting that TSG do its part in service of women by nurturing and addressing these educational and professional needs. I hope you will continue to support us in these efforts. Contact us and join our mailing list?

*Make sure to ask about your “Writing Powerful Narratives” Conference discount on Createspace orders of Next Wave.

Looking forward to hunkering down with my mentor and co-editor Walt Harrington, along with the Fab Five– Wright Thompson, Tony Rehagen, Justin Heckert, Robert Sanchez and Seth Wickersham (in appropriate fashion, Wickersham has been called away to do a piece for ESPN, so we will be setting an place in his honor, Elija style.)

And thanks again to RJI and MSJ and all-yalls parents for footing the bills for this conference. That’s a lot of flights and hotel rooms and pizza.

See you there….

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