NC Literary Hall of Fame



You Don't Know Jack by Don Ross

W&B Publishers
$17.99, paperback / $3.99, e-book
ISBN: 978-0692274231
September, 2014
Fiction: Humor
Available from

"This book, that was going to be all about me, is not about me at all, per se. It’s about per sons I know or knew or might have known. It’s not an in depth biographical character study as one might expect from a writer of my depth and per sona. Indeed, I’ve taken quite a large tad of literary license since discovering that 'telling it like it is' isn’t (is isn’t?) always the best way to write a true story. If truth were told, writing fiction is probably closer to my true per suasion. Therefore, some of what I’m writing here and now and hereafter is, frankly, made up."

While newspaper reporter Jack Odum's inability to stick to the facts, accurately quote sources and use only accepted English words and phrases gets him fired (again), it presents the time and opportunity for him to become the best selling novelist he knows he is. Jack’s cocksure attitude, unorthodox writing style, family dynamics, and a slight psychological problem result in a work a publishing company deems both unworthy of paper and ink yet highly publishable farce? The setting is a Thanksgiving family reunion in the North Carolina Mountains attended by numerous, humorous, relatable characters. The book is Jack’s manuscript submitted to a publishing company with the attitude that, with very little help from the editors, his novel is ready for print. Jack gives us his take on life in coastal and mountainous North Carolina, family and friends, the state of journalism, and the easy act of becoming an award-winning author.

Don Ross is a former broadcaster taking his first steps into the print world. For thirty of his forty plus years in journalism, he wrote feature news as a reporter at WTVD-TV in Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina. He had a ninety-second time slot each night to present amusing off-beat stories that earned him a local reputation as a humorist and led to several AP, UPI, RTNDA, and regional Emmy awards and nominations. His first attempts at humor writing were at his first real TV job at WTAJ in Altoona, Pennsylvania, where he always volunteered to write a “kicker” to end the newscast on a light note. The Altoona TV job was offered after he covered news for WFBG Radio in Altoona while simultaneously obtaining a degree in International Politics from Penn State. His plans to become a foreign correspondent never panned out but he satisfies a desire for foreign travel by going abroad at least once a year. He developed an interest in world affairs and international travel during a four-year stint in the Air Force where he was a D.J. and news broadcaster with The American Forces Radio and Television Service in Pakistan and Italy. He qualified for AFRTS thanks to his experience deejaying and news reading and writing at his hometown radio station, WCPA, in Clearfield, Pennsylvania. Retired now, he lives in Wrightsville Beach with his wife, Mary, who he met while stationed in Italy forty years ago. He has two children who live in the Charlotte area and they have each given Don and his wife two grandchildren.

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