After vowing he wouldn’t, Steve Earle is writing a memoir for Twelve, the literary imprint of Grand Central Publishing and the Hachette Book Group, The New York Times reports. The singer is also working on a new novel.
Earle called the memoir “the book I swore I would never write” in a chat with TheMusic.com.au. What changed his mind? “They made me an offer I couldn’t understand,” he cracked.
The memoir will be “a literary work in three acts,” according to a statement from Earle’s publisher, which plans to release the book in the spring of 2014. The first act will tell the story of his friendship with mentor Townes Van Zandt. Next comes Earle’s “bottoming out” in Nashville, where he was sent to prison and eventually got clean. Finally, there’s recovery, starting around the recording of Earle’s 1995 album Train a Comin’.
“It’s not like, ‘I was born a poor black child . . .’ and it doesn’t try and encompass every minute of my life,” Earle told the website. “I think it’s about something besides me. It’s really about heroes and mentors good and bad.”
Twelve said that Earle’s forthcoming novel will “tell the story of a runaway slave who survived the battle of the Alamo.” It currently has no publication date.
The books will be the third and fourth for Earle, a musician, activist and actor who previously published the novel I’ll Never Get Out of This World Alive and the short story collection Doghouse Roses.