Welcome! My name is David Jennings and in 2016 I started Rare Bird 101, a blog dedicated to my passion, Wild Turkey bourbon and rye whiskey.
By late 2017 I began contemplating a Wild Turkey history/appreciation book. After a little time and a lot of encouragement from family and friends, I soon found myself knee-deep in research.
The months rolled by ...
Here I am in 2019 with a first-draft manuscript completed. The project itself may not be finished, but it's certainly at the point where I'm ready to make Wild Turkey: American Spirit a reality.
Initially, I struggled with the thought of self-publishing in favor of finding a traditional print publisher. It didn't take long for me to realize that my creative side needed both hands on the wheel. There's just one problem - publishers have sizable capital to invest, I (unfortunately) do not.
Ladies and gents, I have a vision. I want to share my love of Wild Turkey with the world. The far-too-often misunderstood spirit has a story unrivaled by any single bourbon brand today (at least in my humble opinion). From French Huguenot immigrants to the world's longest-tenured master distiller, through Civil War, Prohibition, tragedy and triumph, the story of Wild Turkey is the story of America.
And then there's the spirit itself - not just one - there's many Wild Turkey whiskey expressions to discover and explore in this book. With artistic ("non-catalog-esque") full-color bottle photography and detailed tasting notes compiled from my blog and personal journals (as well as my unfiltered opinion to boot), the appreciation section of Wild Turkey: American Spirit will entertain both whiskey veterans and novices alike.
And finally, there's a greater purpose. This past year father and son Master Distillers Jimmy and Eddie Russell celebrated 101 years of combined service to the bourbon industry. 101 years ... wow. And later this year, September 10th to be exact, Jimmy Russell will celebrate 65 years of service at the Wild Turkey Distillery. That's a record unmatched by anyone presently working in the whisk(e)y industry.
I want the Ripy’s and Russell's story to be told. More importantly, I want Jimmy to have a copy of this book in his hands by September. With only a few months to go it won't be an easy task, but with your support it can happen. I know the generosity of the bourbon community. I've seen it and experienced it many times.
This can happen. I know this can happen.
So thank you. Thank you for reading, and if you can help (in any way), thank you for your support. I truly appreciate it. Cheers!
Where your backing funds will go:
- ISBN registration
- Campaign rewards
- *First-run printing
- Legal (as needed)
*First-run printing (for editing/review), as well as the early release limited edition of Wild Turkey: American Spirit will be completed by a local printer. The retail version of the book will be available "on demand" through Amazon/Kindle Direct Publishing (formerly Create Space). It will be a deluxe matte softcover, as Amazon does not print hardback books on demand; however, pages will be full-color with the highest-grade paper possible.
If the initial goal is met I will introduce stretch goals to help cover marketing expenses and possibly a hardcover version of the book. At present, marketing is limited to word of mouth and social media. Any help spreading the news about this project is greatly appreciated! Thanks again.
Risks and challenges
With a first draft behind me and a professional photographer secured, the obstacles ahead are considerably few and easily manageable. While I don't foresee any issues with making this book a reality (even if it takes my own personal backing over a longer period of time), I'll strive to keep backers updated and informed about my progress.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (60 days)