May 13, 2010

Non-Fiction Proposal- Canary in a Coalmine: How One Southern State is leading the Nation to a Renewable Energy Future

In 1933, unemployment in America was estimated to be nearly 25 percent.

     As part of President Franklin Roosevelt's first 100 days in office, on May 18, 1933, he signed the Tennessee Valley Authority Act, creating the first effort in America to create a government-sponsored clean energy system.

     The first damn built to create non-polluting, clean energy was the Norris damn on the Tennessee River near Muscle Shoals, Alabama. The federal government had purchased the land years before, but the project languished until the desire for free, clean, easy-to-create electricity met the need for skilled and unskilled labor.

     In 2009, unemployment in America is just over 10 percent with most of the job losses in manufacturing. Again, the government was looking for ways to create new jobs required skilled and unskilled labor with the goal of making the country more energy independent.

     It seems that history is repeating itself and Tennessee is again in the spotlight.

Historic Announcements

     Two major international firms recently decided to build multibillion-dollar plants in Tennessee. Two government-sponsored, clean energy research institutions are being established in Tennessee with federal stimulus money.

Here is a link to the groundbreaking celebration for the Hemlock semi-conductor and photovoltaic plant being built just north of Nashville.


Here is the link for the groundbreaking announcement for the new Wacker Chemie chemical plant being built southeast of Nashville.

Wacker Chemie announcementHttp://

A billion-dollar Volkswagen assembly plant recently broke ground just outside Chattanooga. The facility will assemble a small, energy efficient sedan for the North American market. Http://   

     Most recently, Nissan Motor Manufacturing, North America has announced their intention to build between 50,000 and 100,000 battery powered cars at the assembly plant in Smyrna, just south of Nashville with funds from a federal loan designated to help America switch from fossil-fueled transportation to electric vehicles.

     Meanwhile, in the time period before these announcements, Tennessee was sighted as one of the top three states in the country in creation of clean energy producing jobs.

The Pugh Charitable Trust names Tennessee one of the top three in creation of clean energy manufacturing in this link.


Here's my story from that same news conference.

Government Support

Federal stimulus spending of over 62 million dollars will create two new clean energy/solar power entities in Tennessee.

     In west Tennessee, a "solar farm" with row after row of solar collectors will power hundreds of homes in Haywood County near Brownsville. It would be operated in partnership with TVA and coordinate with research conducted in Knoxville.

     The five-megawatt, 20-acre solar farm would be part of a proposed industrial development "mega site" and one of the largest solar installations in the Southeast.

     While in east Tennessee, research would be conducted at a new Tennessee Solar Institute that would be headquartered in Knoxville at the University of Tennessee's planned Cherokee Farm Innovation Campus and would be operated by UT and Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Why I Should Write This Book…

     For over thirty years, Middle Tennessee has been my beat. While I've covered just about every kind of story you can imagine, I've always felt that part of my job at the News Director at a public radio station licensed to a university was to find ways of making subjects involving science and history pertinent to the listener.

Here are links from the Publish2 website that show a variety of profiles and articles I've recently published.

A very entertaining article about essayist David Sedaris:

An interview about an award-winning science book:

A profile of author Dennis LeHane:

     Over the years I've met hundreds of people, many with very unusual stories that I was happy to cover. There once was a young congressman who represented the multicounty district in middle Tennessee. His father had been a Congressman and Senator, but up until that time he'd shied away from the "family business."

     Al Gore Jr. was a well-schooled and disciplined campaigner. And while I didn't talk with him every day, I have several pictures of the two of us when we were both much thinner and much less gray. The story of this father's efforts to help "electrify" the Southeast United States and his efforts to bring "renewable" energy sources to this same region will allow me the opportunity to attempt to interview him again after all these years.

     Given the scope of the book and his family's involvement, there's at least a faint hope that he might even contribute a blurb or a forward.

Technical assistance

     A friend of mine, Jonathan Gilligan (Ph.D. Yale University 1991 and currently Research Assistant Professor and former Senior Lecturer, Dept. of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Vanderbilt University) has agreed to help guide the organization of the book from outline to checking the facts and figures in the final draft. He has also offered to write a blurb for the cover.

Query - The Destiny Stone (revised)

Click here to read the original query.

Dear X,

THE DESTINY STONE is a Young Adult fantasy and is complete at 106,000 words.

After receiving a visit from a mysterious 'Magic Wielder', seventeen-year-old Haythem is certain about three things: he is the sole possessor of a magical stone that allows him to alter his destiny, a great and terrible task has been bestowed upon him, and he will need to use the stone to restore order in the conflict riddled realm.

If Haythem is to succeed, he must learn to fight with swords and magic, place his trust in a hot-tempered creature that is part-dragon, and shield his heart against the temptations of a female warrior.  And that's just the beginning of his difficulties.  By chance, Haythem uncovers a disturbing truth about the stone when it attempts to bind his will to its own ends.  Bound by promises he can't ignore, Haythem comes to terms with the daunting nature of the task before him and recognizes that possessing the stone does not guarantee his survival and using it may result in his destruction.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

*insert name & contact info in actual letter

Query- A Tale of Youth and Sorrow


I visited AGENCY NAME's website and noticed that you are interested in YA and fantasy projects. A Tale of Youth and Sorrow, my 53,400-word novel, might interest you. Its sequel, Capita Mortua, a stand-alone tale featuring returning characters and newcomers, has also been completed.

Twelve-year-old orphan and Potioneer girl Minette Bublee knows next to nothing about the Rogue, Ilona Njis; the ill-tempered, perpetually suspicious master thief who, strangely enough, has been her guardian for the past two years. Then comes the shocking revelation: that Ilona is a murderer, and possibly linked to Belphelial, a restless demon rumored to have broken free from the bonds of his ancient prison. Torn between escape and saving her only friend from spiraling further into self-destruction, Minette unwittingly opens a door into an arcane realm, where past and present intertwine, and a confrontation with a grim remnant of their world's tumultuous history transforms a young woman into a monster. With the ghosts of their yesteryears threatening to tear them apart, Minette will voyage through time to learn one of life's greatest lessons, and unlock the secrets of a power greater than any magic.

Five of my short stories were published in Malate Literary Folio (De La Salle University, Philippines) between 1997 and 2002, one of which won second place in my university's 1999 Literary Awards. A member of, I received the 2007 WDC Wonderfuls Award for outstanding writing. In my most recent job, I was a game writer tasked with the detailed write-ups of characters, settings, and stories for games. I am currently residing in the Philippines.

I would be glad to send you my complete manuscript for your review. Thank you for your time and consideration, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely yours,
Michael Cunanan Logarta