Synopses & Reviews
Big Wheel at the Cracker Factory
is about choosing what you want to be when you grow up, and finding out you still have to wait tables on the weekends.
When Mickey Hess discovers that he can list his experience as a college instructor on an application to work as an ice cream man and still get the job he starts to wonder if being a professor has lost its prestige.
With college enrollment and tuition costs at record highs, universities are staffing their courses with part-time instructors who commute between different schools to make a living. Big Wheel follows one year in the life of an adjunct instructor who takes on side jobs as an ice cream man, stand-up comedian, haunted house character, and Billy Graham Crusader. The jobs begin out of financial necessity, but become more of a diversion from a teaching career that Hess fears he is starting to take far more seriously than this employers are taking him.
"Big Wheel at the Cracker Factory is an absolute winner, exploring the difficulties and trials of finding a job, facing a lifetime of work, and searching for meaning somewhere within that work. Mickey Hess writes with truthful insights and rip-roaring hilarity. The fact that it is non-fiction only makes the book that much more important and engaging." Joe Meno, author of Hairstyles of the Damned
"Mickey Hess has taken his experiences as a struggling writing instructor and made them into a wry, picaresque novel. Thoroughly humorous." Cleveland Plain-Dealer
"Underground publishing advocate Mickey Hess uses deadpan humor and pungent observations to describe the price he pays for pursuing a passion teach college students how to write." Chicago Reader
"Mickey Hess makes you want to move to Kentucky and hang out and write poetry for the rest of your life." David Amram, author of Offbeat: Collaborating with Kerouac
About the Author
Mickey Hess taught part-time for several universities in Kentucky and Indiana before moving to his current position as Assistant Professor of English at Rider University. His books include Icons of Hip Hop, and Is Hip Hop Dead?. His writing has appeared in Ninth Letter, Punk Planet, and Created in Darkness by Troubled Americans: The Best of McSweeney's, Humor Category. He lives in Philadelphia.