Synopses & Reviews
For hard-working office workers Kristy Athens and husband Michael, farming was a romantic dream. After purchasing farm land in Oregon's beautiful Columbia Gorge, Athens and hubby were surprised to learn that the realities of farming were challenging and unexpected. Get Your Pitchfork On!
provides the hard-learned nuts-and-bolts of rural living from city folk who were initially out of their depth. Practical and often hilarious, Get Your Pitchfork On!
reads like a twenty-first century Egg and I
Get Your Pitchfork On! gives urban professionals the practical tools they need to realize their dream, with basics of home, farm, and hearth. It also enters territory that other books avoid—straightforward advice about the social aspects of country living, from health care to schools to small-town politics.
Kristy Athens doesn't shy away from controversial subjects, such as having guns and hiring undocumented migrant workers. An important difference between Get Your Pitchfork On! and other farm/country books is that the author's initial country experiment failed. Ravaged by the elements, the economy, and the social structure of their rural area, Athens and husband sold their farm and retreated to Portland, Oregon, in 2009. This gave Athens the freedom to write honestly about her extraordinary experience.
Having learned from mistakes, both Kristy and her husband are currently saving up to buy another farm, and this time to live a practical dream rather than an uninformed nightmare.
Kristy Athens' nonfiction and short stories have been published in a number of magazines, newspapers, and literary journals, most recently High Desert Journal, Barely South Review, and the anthology Mamas and Papas. In 2010, she was a writer-in-residence for the Eastern Oregon Writer-in-Residence program and Soapstone. This is her first book.
"Athens, a freelance writer who gave up city life for homesteading in a narrow Oregon river valley, has created a comprehensive overview for urban folk contemplating the same transition, offering advice abundant from burn piles to bovines, all with a dose of dry humor. Dreaming urban dwellers will learn the skinny on vegetation control, the evils of fire ants, the pitfalls of the worm bin, and what happens when dogs find a deer carcass in the woods. The author returned to the city after six years, but also spent time with family in the Wisconsin countryside, adding those rural perspectives to her own. The result: 27 chapters offering plenty of answers, addressing land (realtor vs. for sale by owner, irrigation, septic systems), maintenance (fencing, trees, fire abatement), people (neighbors, church, sexuality/gender), utilities, livestock, wildlife, harvesting, kids, community events. Her observations hold plenty of joys and warnings for urbanites wanting to chuck it all or for those bluesy for the bucolic. (June 1)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"An entertaining and practical handbook that should be mandatory reading for urban dwellers considering a move to the country." - Rustik Magazine
"A nice change from the standard how to, this book may be more of a how not to, but proves equally effective." - Indie Reader
"Kristy Athens' observations hold plenty of joys and warnings for urbanites wanting to chuck it all or for those bluesy for the bucolic." - Publisher's Weekly
A city girl's straightforward and amusing advice about farming and the social aspects of country living.
About the Author
Kristy Athens and her husband Michael always had visions to get out of the city and get farming. And farm they did on the Washington side of the Columbia gorge. "Get Your Pitchfork On!" is both an amusing how-to from Kristy and hubby's hard-earned personal experiences.
Kristy Athens' nonfiction and short fiction have been published in a number of magazines, newspapers and literary journals, most recently High Desert Journal, Barely South Review and the anthology Mamas and Papas. In 2010, she was a writer-in-residence for the Eastern Oregon Writer-in-Residence program and Soapstone. Kristy has served on the boards of the Hood River County Cultural Trust, Independent Publishing Resource Center, and Northwest Writers. She has been a guest blogger for New Oregon Arts and Letters; editor of Columbia Gorge Magazine; and coordinator of the Columbia Center for the Arts Plein Air Writing Exhibition, and of Literary Arts Oregon Book Awards and Oregon Literary Fellowships programs.
This is Kristy's first book.