IU Northwest Invites Veterans, Loved Ones to Submit Stories of Military Experiences

rot1Indiana University Northwest, delving into its fourth installment of the One Book…One Campus…One Community reading initiative, has chosen Operation Homecoming: Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Home Front, in the Words of U.S. Troops and Their Families, edited by Andrew Carroll, as the campus read for the 2015-16 academic year.

The book is a series of shared stories, letters and experiences that tell the story of America’s military...through their eyes. The compilation of almost 100 never-before-shared eyewitness accounts is the result of a major initiative launched by the National Endowment for the Arts to bring distinguished writers to military bases and inspire U.S. Marines, soldiers, sailors, and airmen and their families to record their wartime experiences.

A call for local stories
In the same way that Andrew Carroll gave a voice to America’s veterans, IU Northwest wants to do the same for the scores of local residents who also have a war or military experience to share. With the author’s permission, the stories may be compiled and published in a similar anthology.

The campus community and local residents are encouraged to submit their stories for consideration in an IU Northwest publication, planned for Spring 2016. For guidelines on how to submit a story for consideration, visit: iun.edu/onebook.

The importance of recording such wartime and military stories is perhaps best summarized by Carroll, who said, "I think for so many veterans — and I've gotten to talk to troops going back to World War II and to Korea and Vietnam — it takes them years, decades even, to go back and look at their old letters and to confront what they've been through because the memories are so painful for some of them. But I think that they realize the cathartic value of getting these emotions out, putting them on paper, sharing them with others. And that's what encouraged so many troops to share these materials."

To assist those who wish to submit stories, IU Northwest is providing Writing Workshops dedicated to sharing military experiences at various times throughout the academic year.

The next opportunity to attend a Writing Workshop is from 1 to 2 p.m., Thursday, Oct. 1 in the Writing Lab, located in Hawthorn Hall, Room 418.

Professor of English William Allegrezza, Ph.D., together with Creative Writing faculty members and students, will guide those who wish to share their own stories of war and military life.