1. What made you decide to do a book of presidential quotations?
Well, since an early age I loved history, and I loved writing. So I always had it in the back of my mind that I would eventually write something history-related. And then one day in college I was writing a term paper on American History, and I was trying to conclude the paper with a profound quote, and thought who would be better to quote than a U.S. president for a U.S. History paper. But to my amazement, this country has tons and tons of books on American History, Culture, and yes, Presidents, but a comprehensive book exclusively on U.S. Presidential quotations was actually non-existent. And it was at this moment that I decided to put “Wisdom from the Oval Office” to pen and paper.
2. How did you go about compiling all the quotes?
I utilized local libraries in Chicago, in addition to the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., and several presidential libraries. My sources ranged from personal diaries, to letters, to newspaper articles, to autobiographies of the Presidents.
Well, I was looking for themes that were hot-button issues to Americans. Issues that interest people, and which people want to read and know more about. So I visited surveys, polls, and library catalogs, and pooled categories that people showed interest in, like the economy, love, war, politics, God, and so on. And I eventually made these categories into the chapter headings for “Wisdom from the Oval Office.”
4. Did you ever find yourself feeling a partisan inclination when compiling quotations? Where you maybe wanted to include more of one party’s or president’s quotes than another?
No. The purpose of this book was to give readers a glimpse into the lives of the Presidents, both in their public and private spheres…with no sugar-coating!
5. Who is your favorite president?
6. What is your favorite presidential quote?
It really depends on what you’re looking for. You have serious ones, to comedic ones, to meaningful ones. That being said, one of my all-time favorites: “The most terrifying words in the English language are: I’m from the government and I’m here to help.” –Ronald Reagan, during a news conference on August 12, 1986. Also, being a fan of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, I can definitely relate to James Garfield’s saying, “Man cannot live by bread alone; for he must have peanut butter!”
7. Did the President’s with the shorter terms have fewer quotes represented in the text?
Not necessarily. Some Presidents just talked more than others :).
8. Did you discover any unusual bits of trivia about any of the Presidents while researching quotes for the book?
Yes. Did you know, originally, Vice Presidents were the presidential candidates receiving the second-largest number of votes? Could you imagine George W. Bush and John Kerry as President and Vice President of the United States?!
9. Do you have any upcoming projects my readers can look forward to?
Thanks for asking Rebecca. Yes I am. It’s on the successful businessmen and women in America, their lives, their struggles, and their stories, in their own words, and how they reached the pinnacles of financial success in this country. It’s meant to be more of an inspirational business handbook…I’m not set on a particular title yet, but if any readers have any suggestions, please let me know!
10. Parting shot! Ask us here at The Magical Buffet any one question.
Why do they call it an escalator if it takes you down?
But they can also carry you up! (Although if you want to geek out, you can read about the origins of the name here.)
Wisdom from the Oval Office
Compiled by Pierce Word
Paperback: 303 pages Also available as an e-Book
History Publishing Company, July 23, 2013
ISBN-13: 978-1933909448 ISBN-10: 1933909447
PR Contact: James or Lynda O’Connor, 847-615-5462, firstname.lastname@example.org
About Pierce Word:
Pierce Word studied at the College of DuPage in Illinois and later earned a B.A. in Middle Eastern Studies with honors from the American University in Cairo, Egypt, and an M.S. in Project Management from Boston University. He spent two years touring Europe and the Middle East. While in Cairo, he taught U.S. History and English as a second language. Over a 3 year period, he researched and cross-referenced speeches, letters and diaries of the American presidents, and compiled a collection of presidential quotations, the largest published collection to date. He lives with his wife in his native Chicago.