This portrait is a narrative non-fiction and is true to life with the exception of some name and character changes to protect individuals' privacy.
The life story of our main character, Sonny Williams, is true based on observations and interviews that I conducted.
In this book, I am combining two distinct but mutually linked sections that have similar themes and messages:
1) My observations and experiences in DC obtained through interactions with my contractors while renovating my fixer-upper on 500 Lebaum Street. (For ease of use, these chapters physically reside in another site:www.runinmaverick.blogspot.com but are available on this blog via the link list provided on the right-hand column.)
While renovating the house, I befriended several of my contractors who provide me a first-hand view of Ward 8 as well as their suggestions on how to improve the neighborhood.
2) The life story of Sonny Williams, the main character of the story who purchased 500 Lebaum Street in 1968 and sold it to me via his daughter as a power of attorney, 35 years later.
When Sonny and Anne purchased their newlywed home, the area in Congress Heights was lively and vibrant. Then came the gangs and the strip clubs, heroin and crack and the once idyllic community went downhill fast.
Through Sonny's voice, I describe his observations and explanations of how Ward 8 turned from neighborly to downright dangerous in a matter of several years.
How to Read
The best way to read this web-book is via the link list that is provided on the right-hand column of the blog. These links are synched together via two separate blogs (My Story and Sonny's Story)
Do I have to follow the Chapters chonologically?
Although it is recommended to read the Web-book by the sequence provided on the link list, you are more than welcome to randomly browse the modules below to sample and try out certain chapters or certain topics that interest you.
What makes this Web-Book different?
1) The "RUNIN" format -- a logical and effective new way to better understand and frame the content. Click here for more information on what "RUNIN" means and stands for.
2) The use of Social Media Widgets provide a more broader and in-depth background information delivering context, education and understanding.
- YouTube of old news reports
- Google Earth and images
- Old Headlines
- Wikipedia Widgets
- Podcasts of Chapter materials as well as sound effects and narratives spaced strategically throughout the chapters that provide context and understanding
- Links of Relevant News Stories
- Snap Shots providing contextual content info of all hyperlinks
- Word Pictures from Wordle
- Comments and Reactions from Readers
Why This Approach?
Because I believe that reading should be interactive, messages should be framed and learning should be visualized.
Living and Breathing Web-Book
As of Jan 1, 2009, I am working on Chapt 30. When the Web-book is completed by the end of 2010, there will be approximately 100 chapters available. However the Web-Book is content-rich and message-driven, so you are highly encouraged to start reading today.
Do you have other RUNIN projects?
Yes, I am working on several. The links are provided via the drop down bar to your right. However, this is the only Web-Book that I'm currently working on.
Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoy the Web-book. Please let me know if you have any questions or inputs.