It is my pleasure to have Deborah Dupre, author of Vampire of Macondo, here with us to talk about what to look for in an agent.
What to Look for in an Agent
By Deborah Dupre
“Surely if all that was happening to people along the Gulf coast over two years in the United States, then CNN, ABC and other major news stations would report it,” the agent told me about my Vampire of Macondo book summary.
“Well, mainstream news has reported a bit of it,” I replied. “Merle Savage, one of the sole surviving workers at the Exxon Valdez disaster, was on CNN talking about it. Ms. Savage, very ill, hung on, advocating for Gulf survivors. She died last year.”
My heart raced. I wanted to show to Ms. Hollywood Trailer the interview of children like Jessica Hagan, 13, explaining that even children in her community were bleeding and women were having serious reproductive health problems. I wanted her to hear Jessica say that the elderly were “dropping like flies.”
I wanted to show to her Panama City oil clean up worker Jennifer Rexford saying on camera through tears that she was afraid to hold her babies anymore, fearing they’d catch the antibiotic-resistant disease she contracted soon after participating in a beach cleanup, as thousands of other workers had become deathly ill.
I wanted her to hear and see Ms. Rexford assert, “This is genocide. This is chemical genocide.”
I wanted her to hear south Louisiana’s Kindra Arnesen tell my son, director of The Big Fix, “I honestly think we’ve all been poisoned,” after showing her antibiotic resistant, giant, deep oozing boil, a condition all too familiar to Gulf coast residents since the BP “spill” in the Gulf.
“This is the United States,” I heard the agent on the other end of phone exclaim. “I could understand that happening in another country, but not here. You’re talking about something from the 1970s or 80s. This is 2012, Ms. Dupré.
She then said, “My company would have to see evidence of what you’re saying.”
“Oh,” I replied, “Well of course. I have over a thousand references documenting all this in the book. I can send all of those to you.”
After the agent’s next comment of disbelief, followed by another question, I politely thanked her, figuring it best to take my business elsewhere.
“Whoa! What a book!” publicist Dorothy Thompson promptly replied after reading my application for her company to represent me. “I knew there was more to that Gulf disaster than we’ve been told!”
Thompson, director of Pump Up Your Book, showed the innovative and compassionate response I needed to coordinate my virtual book tour.
Soon after sending to Thompson one of my interviews and a video demonstrating censored voices from the shattered Gulf, she exclaimed, “Those poor people.”
I knew I’d found the agent with the interest in human rights needed to publicize my book and coordinate my virtual tour.
A recent comment by Tom Jones under one of my human rights news articles about non-renewable energy impact on people holds true for all the dirty, dangerous, corrupt elements of the non-renewable energy industry. His comment is about a simple form of action: “We must keep talking about this so the right people may hear of it!”
That’s why I wrote the Vampire of Macondo. I grew up in south Louisiana. I, as well as many family members, paid a heavy price for that. I know what young Jessica Hagan was talking about in Vampire of Macondo, Chapter 1, It’s ‘Very Scary’:
“I’m having, I guess you can describe it as female problems,” the young Cajun with long, brown, curly hair and big brown eyes named Jessica Hagan said during a radio interview, hesitantly.
“They’re rampant here, but I won’t go into that,” the 13-year-old added hurriedly, embarrassed.
“’Here’ is a community about as far south on Louisiana land as one can travel before entering the Gulf of Mexico. The little fishing village where Jessica lives is called Grand Isle.
“Nosebleeds are pretty regular now. It’s happening a lot. Everybody,” she said. “It’s happened to me.”
Gaining confidence during her radio interview, Jessica announced, “Lots of women are having miscarriages who never had problems before.”
Jessica was unknowingly concurring with reports by women in other Gulf communities after the April 20th Deepwater Horizon explosions over Macondo Prospect in the Gulf of Mexico began the world’s largest toxic chemical catastrophe in history. She was also bringing back my own nightmarish experiences of Big Oil feeding off of me.’
Still, even today, after 33 months have passed since the Gulf coast genocide began, I cannot watch victims in my book trailer without choking up. Every day, I’m still in disbelief that our corporate government would and did orchestrate this evil against innocent Americans and leave them to die with no aid or comfort.
In Vampire of Macondo, I couldn’t resist including a few lines that Margaret Curole told me. In her strong Cajun dialect, Curole said about one of the many thousands dead and dying dolphins:
“We watched her push her dead baby with her nose around in circles, as though she didn’t know what to do. Then, she pushed her dead baby right up to us, as if asking us to bring it back to life for her.”
Nor could I resist lines such as those by Easy Rider, Mr. Peter Fonda:
“Peter Fonda, a big fan of sea life, didn’t take to Obama ordering him to shut up. Mr. Fonda told me about that at the Cannes Film Festival, at the world debut of The Big Fix that he’s in. He promptly wrote to Obama and told him he’s an ‘f…ing traitor.’
The next day, that news went viral. I understand Mr. Fonda paid the price for it, too. He did tell me he was proud of young Jessica Hagan for telling the world the truth about the genocide.”
In later months or years, after exposed to Gulf contamination, after told Gulf beaches, water and air were safe, women might grieve similar to the dolphins.
Also from this section in Vampire of Macondo are the words of NASA astronaut Dr. Brian O’Leary:
“It is shocking to just see the immediate symptoms just a few months after the BP oil spill and to track this into the future and to project,” former NASA scientist astronaut Dr. Brian O’Leary, now working to help alleviate oil industry human rights violations in Ecuador, told radio host. David Gibbons. “It’s very scary. We’re talking about long-term effects.”
Vampire of Macondo is the first book to detail human rights abuses of the Gulf of Mexico oil crime and ongoing cover-ups of that catastrophic event continuing through today. Although it took over two years to complete, Vampire of Macondo is still the only book detailing the human side of what is no less than the crime, that by United Nations definition, is a crime against humanity.
Not only that. Experts agree the worst of this crime is yet to come. The human toll will be higher than initially predicted. The poisons are spreading diseases throughout the nation because BP’s crude and Corexit have entered the food chain, such as the Gulf seafood that is shipped throughout the country. To survive, people nationwide need to read Vampire of Macondo to know about the chemical poisoning that mainstream media has hidden from them.
Vampire of Macondo exposes far more than media, BP, the government or courts are telling about the historic Gulf oil catastrophic event that began on Earth Day, 2010 and continues to destroy humans and the environment.
Knowing the ghastly suffering this crime has and is causing inspired me to work on this project. That knowledge also made this publishing project emotionally draining. It was those voiceless victims, however, that drove me two and a half years to ensure documenting every statement in the 450 pages with over 1000 references in this comprehensive book, Vampire of Macondo.
New Orleans native Deborah Dupré reports censored human rights news stories. With Science and Ed. Specialist Grad Degrees from U.S. and Australian universities, Dupré’s been a human and Earth rights advocate over 30 years in those countries and Vanuatu. Her unique humanitarian-based research and development work, including in some of the world’s least developed and most remote areas, led her to write articles appearing in dozens of popular print and Internet media internationally.
Her latest book is the nonfiction, Vampire of Macondo.
Visit her column at Examiner: http://www.examiner.com/user-gdeborahdupre