The write stuff on display in McCandless

| Wednesday, March 20, 2013, 9:01 p.m.

Those who have wondered how a book goes from an idea to something on the shelf at a library or bookstore can learn about local authors' experiences during a program at 7 p.m. Monday at the Northland Public Library, 300 Cumberland Road in McCandless.

“The authors act as a panel on diverse topics,” said Jane Jubb, adult services manager at Northland.

These types of events have attracted a big audience in the past, Jubb said, because people in the community have ideas for their own books and appreciate having the chance to ask those who already have written one questions.

This panel will feature Ron Gainsford, Gene Natali, Keith Adams and Dennis Marsili.

Gainsford, 83, of Ross Township, is the author of “Aging With Dignity: My Heart Transplant Story.”

Gainsford received his new heart in 1994 at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

“It was my doctor who advised me to write the book,” Gainsford said.

The book is an autobiography that discusses growing up in Pittsburgh during the Great Depression; his history in competitive swimming, which continued after his transplant; and his adventures leading scuba-diving trips around the world.

He also shares insight and humor from his years as an educator and coach at the collegiate, high school and elementary school levels.

While the last part of the book deals with the problems of aging and his eventual heart transplant, Gainsford said, he thinks the tone of the book is funny and “can be uplifting to people who are having health problems of their own.”

Natali, 33, of McCandless, co-authored “The Missing Semester” with his good friend, Matt Kabala. “One thing that all students have in common is that they'll need to make decisions about money,” said Natali, adding that the current education system often provides minimal guidance on how to do that.

This book took two years to write, and, Natali said, he and Kabala strived to write a book that was different from many of the other financial-advice books on the market.

“There are so many books out there where the author tries to share how much they know,” Natali said.

What can end up happening, he said, is that readers can get intimidated by the amount of information and how it's presented. “The Missing Semester” is designed to be informative while also being accessible to the reader and easy to understand, Natali said.

Adams, 50, of Wexford, will discuss his compilation, “Pearls of Wisdom: Quotations to Stimulate Your Mind, Heart and Soul.”

In this book, Adams said, he hoped to share the wealth of quotes he has collected for the last 30 years. Adams said it is easy to drown in a sea of quotes if someone does an online search. This book divides quotes into roughly 60 chapters of topics to make it easier to find the perfect quote.

Adams said the book can be savored “like a really good box of candy,” and he compared the book to a pearl necklace of wisdom, featuring thoughts from Socrates to Steve Jobs.

“I had a lot of fun sculpting the book,” said Adams, who hopes the quotes can be a legacy for his three children and inspiration for other quote-lovers.

Marsili could not be reached for interview before the deadline for this edition, but he will discuss his novel, “Excessive Forces: A Pittsburgh Police Thriller,” which draws upon his 23 years of experience as a police officer.

Mandy Fields Yokim is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.

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