Paul Raeburn: Do Fathers Matter?


Paul Raeburn
Scientific American/Farrar, Straus and Giroux; June 3, 2014; $26.00
ISBN-10: 0374141045
ISBN-13: 978-0374141042

Raeburn reports:

Do Fathers Matter? grew out of my previous book, Acquainted with the Night, a memoir of raising children with depression and bipolar disorder. When I finished that book, I thought I wanted to do a book on new research on how the brain continues to grow and change through the teenage years and into adulthood.

Paul Raeburn

After a couple of years of thinking about that, I realized I was interested not so much in teenagers, but in what was known about the fathers of teens and their interactions with their children. That led me to the idea of a book on research on fatherhood, much of which has not been reported in the popular press.

My agent helped me secure a contract, and then a second contract when my first editor was laid off. When I started Do Fathers Matter, I plunged into the research with great enthusiasm, only to make a mistake I’d made before: I spent too much time doing research and reporting before starting to write.

This is my fourth book, and I’ve had to learn this lesson over again several times. I hope I remember it when I start my next book.

Contact info:

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NASW members: will your book be published soon? Take advantage of this opportunity for shameless self-promotion.

Tell your fellow NASW members tell how you came up with the idea for your book, developed a proposal, found an agent and publisher, conducted research, put the book together, and what you wish you’d known before you started your project.


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Jun. 11, 2014

Advance Copy

For this column, NASW book editor Lynne Lamberg asks NASW authors to tell how they came up with the idea for their book, developed a proposal, found an agent and publisher, funded and conducted research, and put the book together. She also asks what they wish they had known before they began working on their book, what they might do differently the next time, and what tips they can offer aspiring authors. She then edits the A part of that Q&A to produce the author reports you see here.

Publication of NASW members' reports in Advance Copy does not constitute NASW's endorsement of their books. NASW welcomes your comments and hopes this column stimulates productive discussions.

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