The Most Fun I Had Writing a Book

Over the next couple of weeks, I will be featuring some of the titles in my back catalog. The book that was, by far, the most fun to write was The Elvis Impersonation Kit published in 2006 by Black Dog and Leventhal. The volume itself is slim, highly illustrated, both practical– if you want to take a shot at acting Elvis– and humorous.

The humor comes from the genuine sense of pleasure and fun the professional Elvis artists expressed. I interviewed quite a few of them. As a group they were positive, warm and did not take themselves too seriously. If there are any editors out there who would like to assign me a similar project- I stand ready!

Here are some of the things I learned writing this book: You don’t have to be white or male to have a career or hobby as an Elvis. Some female Elvises or Evli as they are often called, manage to sing like Evlis is a “you have to be kidding me, that can’t be a woman” kind of way. There are supposedly Elvis impersonator groupies known as “sideburn chasers.” Those late-period Elvis costumes are labor intensive to make and expensive to buy. I spoke to a leading manufacturer of high-quality Elvis wigs, an Elvis-impersonating minister who has an Evlis-themed church, and a dialect coach with tips on authentic Elvis stage banter. (More on Elvis talk in this old article.)

The Elvis Impersonation Kit comes packaged with Elvis glasses, sideburns, a ring and a CD. If you think you might like a kit for someone on your list, please consider ordering one directly from me. I will sign the book, and can write a dedication. Just include it in the comment box on the order form.

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