I’m humbled and honored to share the news that my book The Dog Merchants has been named one of four finalists for Best Reference Book of 2016 in the Dog Writers Association of America Writing Competition.
It’s also a privilege to have one of my pieces on dogmerchants.com, about pet stores and dog auctions, named among the four finalists in the category for Best Blog Post or Article.
A full list of all the finalists is here. There’s a lot of talent on this list, and I wish all of the finalists good luck! Winners will be announced in mid-February.
My latest story about dogs was published today by The Washington Post. It’s about a little-discussed sphere of the current political divide: the fact that our level of national vitriol is now keeping dogs in conditions that many of us find unacceptable.
I traveled to Ohio to report this story, to a county just west of that state’s hardest-hit Rust Belt regions. I spent a full day with a person whose political, religious and other views bear little resemblance to my own, and whose lifelong economic realities and educational opportunities are unimaginable to most people where I live, near Manhattan.
If you care at all about dogs—whether you voted for Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton or not at all—please take the time to give this story a read. I hope that you, as I did, will realize that we Americans often have more in common than we believe, and that if we can simply find ways to talk to one another, we just might be able to solve problems that desperately need our attention.
A full decade ago—the same year that Twitter went live—I launched a website called CharterWave.
Now, in celebration of the site’s 10-year anniversary and widespread success, I’ve relaunched the site with a whole new look.
CharterWave was one of the first niche websites in the entire marine industry, and the first of its kind to focus exclusively on luxury yacht charter. It went on to win awards from Boating Writers International as well as longtime support from sponsors, some of whom have been with the site pretty much since its launch, and continue with the site today.
Click over to CharterWave to check out the site’s new look and features.
I’m super-proud of the lead cover feature that I wrote for the issue of Yachts International that is on newsstands now. It’s about the use of virtual reality in everything from the design to the construction to the marketing of yachts—a nascent field that has amazing potential thanks to the huge technology investments that many of today’s yachts represent.
Yes, superyachts are of course playthings for the rich and famous, but they also can be engineering marvels built with financial investments far greater than anything seen on land. (When was the last time you saw a $200 million house?) The addition of virtual reality to the industry presents some truly mind-bending possibilities, with some of the world’s wealthiest individuals now exploring the technology’s possibilities on multiple levels.
Look for the new edition of Yachts International on newsstands now, or head over to the Yachts International website to get a subscription.
Today is the official publication date for my new book, The Dog Merchants: Inside the Big Business of Breeders, Pet Stores and Rescuers. It’s time to celebrate!
My new book The Dog Merchants: Inside the Big Business of Breeders, Pet Stores, and Rescuers will publish May 2 with Pegasus Books. It’s a follow-the-money look at the whole of the dog business, with the first half about breeding and the second half about rescue. My hope is that it will show dog lovers what we’re buying into with every dog we bring home, so we can work together for the good of all kinds of dogs, everywhere.
The first “sneak peek” came online yesterday at Salon.com, which published “The Big Money Behind Best In Show” just in time for this year’s Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show (which will conclude tonight on the USA Network). This is the first adapted article from the book to be published anywhere, and it was so widely shared in its first 24 hours online that it became one of the top Google News results for searches about the dog show itself.
Obviously, this adapted article pulls information from the first half of The Dog Merchants, which is about breeders. The next adapted article, scheduled to be published this month in The Bark magazine, pulls from the rescue half of the book.
Stay tuned, or simply read it all by pre-ordering your copy of The Dog Merchants today.
My piece titled “Florida’s Aging Bridges” earned first prize in the category Boating Issues, News and Analysis. It appeared in the November/December 2015 issue of Yachts International, where I am copy editor and contributing editor. The piece was an investigative analysis of federal, state and local data regarding bridges in South Florida, where yachts regularly cruise. The online version of “Florida’s Aging Bridges” is here.
I also earned a Certificate of Merit in the Travel and Destinations category for my piece “Into Antarctica.” It appeared in the August 2015 issue of Yachting, where I am charter editor and consulting editor. The Antarctica piece was about a luxury sailing yacht offering charters in a part of the world where most other yachts are not equipped to go. The online version of “Into Antarctica” is here.
It’s particularly gratifying to win awards for these two pieces, which contain entirely different styles of writing. The bridge article presents hard, cold data in a compelling way, while the Antarctica piece makes readers feel like they are in a remote part of the world. I am grateful that my editors at Yachting and Yachts International give me the chance to write in such a wide variety of styles.
My sincerest thanks to the judges and sponsors of the BWI Writing Competition. A press release listing all the winners is here—congratulations to every single one!