Richard Pollak has an impressive resume: author of The Creation of Dr. B: A Biography of Bruno Bettelheim; The Colombo Bay, an account of his five-week voyage on a container ship after the 9/11 terror attacks; Up Against Apartheid: The Role and the Plight of the Press in South Africa; and The Episode, a novel that deals with epilepsy.
He's also been a contributing editor of The Nation, associate editor at Newsweek, written for Harper’s, The Atlantic, The New York Times Book Review and others, served as a Poynter Fellow at Yale University, and taught at NYU.
But despite his considerable writing talents and his deep history with the publishing industry, he couldn't find a publisher for his most recent book, After the Barn: A Brother's Memoir.
According to THIS story by Michael Miner for The Chicago Reader, Pollak even had a number of editors and agents who loved the manuscript turn down After the Barn — because the industry, especially for memoirs, had "tanked":
"Most passed without comment," he said in an e-mail. "Others passed, too, but said nice things, ...