From Capitol Hill to book, ‘Capitol Hell’ [UPDATED]Published 9:49am Tuesday, September 4, 2012 Updated 11:50am Tuesday, September 4, 2012
At a time of year when politics is all about serious business and steadfast opinions, Two former employees for Sen. Norm Coleman are back on another campaign tour of Minnesota, and while they might appear to be promoting a political candidate, the tour is actually all about a book.
“Capitol Hell” was written by Alicia Long and Jayne Jones. Both worked with Coleman during his time as a U.S. Senator from 2003 to 2009, and they will arrive in Fergus Falls to talk about their book on Wednesday.
Long and Jones drew from their personal experiences and stories they heard from others in Washington D.C. to pull together a book about the dysfunctional behind the scenes happenings of working on The Hill.
“Capitol Hell” follows the story of Allison Amundson, a small town girl and recent college graduate who landed a big job for Minnesota’s U.S. Senator Anders McDermott.
“The second Allison sets foot in the prestigious Senate Russell Building, things begin to go awry. Allison soon realizes her co-workers consist of a Chief of Staff who has little to no control over the antics in the office, a Press Secretary who is not only pompous, but who is constantly primping and preening, and worst of all the Senator himself, who cares more about his rise to fame than the people of Minnesota,” the book’s synopsis states.
“It’s a fun read,” Jones said. “It gives you a glimpse of life behind the political life curtain.”
Jones and Long chose to write the book with an unusual method. With no outline or direction, Long wrote the first chapter and Jones wrote the second chapter. The two passed the story back and forth without talking about where they were going.
“We never had a hiccup in the process,” Jones said. “It’s fun to share this experience with someone I’m so close to.”
Long and Jones will begin their tour Tuesday on the same day the book launches, but it won’t look like an ordinary book tour. They will make 15 stops in Minnesota beginning in Rochester and working all the way up to Grand Rapids in a campaign style tour. Each of their stops will have political signs, campaign car magnets, faces on a stick and various other political campaign clichés, Jones said.
Because of their ties to the area, Minnesota was an easy choice for Jones and Long. Jones grew up in Detroit Lakes and Long went to the University of Minnesota before they worked for Coleman.
“We both just love Minnesota,” said Jones.
The authors will make a stop at Perkins in Fergus Falls at 8 a.m. Wednesday to do a book signing and meet and greet.
Political talk is only going to heat up more as September approaches, and Jones said she thinks this is a great time to get this book out to the public.
“Everybody needs a little humor before election season,” Jones said.