A Brief History of My Book on Love

New Ways of Loving:

How Authenticity Transforms Relationships

How this book came to be.

by James Park


    The writing of this book begin in October 1972,
in connection with my class in the Minnesota Free University
called "Writing a Book on Love".
Most of the present chapters were drafted that first quarter,
one chapter a week.
For the next several years, I revised these chapters
and added a few more as I offered classes on
love for Authentic persons.

    I first printed the book piecemeal,
over a period of a year and a half,
one section of the book appearing each quarter.
These six sections of 32, 40, or 48 pages each
can still be seen in the later editions.


    The first bound edition was published on July 4, 1976
(a revolutionary date for a revolutionary book).
It was called Authentic Love: An Existential Vision.


    On January 1, 1978 (first day of the new copyright law),
the second edition was published,
also called Authentic Love: An Existential Vision.

    On February 28, 1979 (Ash Wednesday),
fire destroyed the apartment building where I was living,
burning up almost all the remaining copies of
Authentic Love, putting the book instantly out of print.


    For the next several years, I continued to revise the book,
while looking for another publisher to publish it.
In 1996, the book was republished with a few changes
under the new title: Love Among Authentic Persons.
But this time it never made it to a bound volume.
It remained 6 separate signatures (booklets or chapbooks),
each with its own name.
And Love Among Authentic Persons
was listed in Books in Print as the
title of the series. 
Copies of some of the chapbooks that make up this third edition are still available.


    In 1997, the title was changed to:
New Ways of Loving:
How Authenticity Transforms Relationships. 
And the Internet became the major way
that perceptive readers found this book.
This could make New Ways of Loving
one of the first books to be discovered on the Internet.


    In 2000, Existential Books published the 4th edition, 
which was the first to include 32 pages of bibliographies at the end.


    In 2001, the second printing of the 4th edition was published,
which updated mainly the bibliographies.
All copies of the 4th edition have been sold.



    In 2003, the 5th edition was published by Existential Books.
This revision incorporates 1-3 minor changes on each page. 
Major changes in the bibliographies were make
to include newer books on various themes of love.
But the basic content of New Ways of Loving remained the same.

    Also in 2003, Existential Books established a website:
www.existentialbooks.com,
which remains the primary place readers can order this book.
NWL is not stocked by any bookstores anywhere in the world,
because it remains a small-press publication.


    In 2007, Existential Books published the 6th edition of NWL.
This will probably be the final version of the book,
altho the Bibliographies will continue to be updated
as new books appear on related themes.

    It was a very interesting experience to re-read this book
after a break of about four years of not looking at the text.
I was able to appreciate it as a reader
as well as the person who wrote it.

    I saw once again the powerful advantage
of having a different type-face for each chapter.
This helps the reader to slow down,
not assuming that each chapter will repeat something said earlier.
In a strong sense, each chapter is a separate book.
Each chapter addresses new themes in new ways.

    I made about 730 minor changes for the 6th edition.
But the pages remained just the same
as they have been for the last several editions.
So readers who have read earlier editions
will not notice most of the changes made in 2007.

    The most common change was putting in the word "might"
where I had used "may" before.
This makes the subjunctive mood more obvious.
All of the other changes were also improvements in style
rather than changes of content.
These hundreds of tiny changes were mostly changing one word.
I looked thru my copy of the 5th edition,
which I used to create the 6th edition.
I see that there were several changes on most pages.
And only about a dozen pages have no changes at all.
This speaks to my wish to make the best book possible
for the careful reader.
Fast readers will not notice any of these changes.

    One reviewer of an early edition of my book on love
said that it was a book (like a few other favorites)
that he planned to read again every year.
I doubt that he has kept to this plan for the last 35 years.
I have not read it every year myself.

    But since I read it the last time,
I have become an honorary grandfather.
This regular experience of helping to raise a child
has cast new light on the parts that deal with children.
(And since I first wrote this paragraph,
a new honorary grandchild has been born.)

    I think New Ways of Loving:
How Authenticity Transforms Relationships

will continue to be my most popular book.
There are two others that sell about the same number each year.
But these numbers are sometimes distorted
by the fact of being between editions.
Now all three have recent
updatededitions.
So we shall see by the end of 2008
just which will be the top seller.
(In 2008 NWL, XP, & AU all sold about the same.)

    I will continue to seek a major publisher for
New Ways of Loving:
How Authenticity Transforms Relationships.
In the meantime, readers who have discovered this book
from all corners of the world by means of the Internet
can appreciate these ideas no matter what happens
to my hopes for wider distribution.

    Do you know any other readers who would appreciate NWL?
Pass the word.
Do you have any contacts in the publishing world?
(Here is an open letter to literary agents and publishers.)

    You can write to me, James Park, at the following address:
e-mail: PARKx032@TC.UMN.EDU
I am always happy to hear from real readers
(and potential readers) anywhere in the world.


created March 15, 1999; (a few unrecorded revisions); revised 3-21-2009

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