Darrell Park, Author of Better Than We Found It: Simple Solutions to Some of the World’s Toughest Problems, available April 2012.
(The author has given permission to use these questions and answers for background and as content for articles, blog posts and other related stories about his current book).
Q: Interesting title. What is the story behind the naming of the book?
A: It is one of my longest held beliefs that we each have a right and a responsibility to make our country, our world, and those around us just a little bit better in some way. This doesn’t mean that you are expected to magically fix everything, or even one thing. Nor are you expected to make the things that you care about perfect. Too often, we don’t act because we know that we can’t fully fix what is broken. The title of this book makes it clear that perfection is an unrealistic standard. Just because we can’t fix something perfectly doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do our part to make it a whole lot better. Some of the best solutions to problems come from people who just want to do what they can. And a whole lot of people doing what they can is the answer that fixes the things that ail our country, our world, and those around us.
Q: What was your inspiration for writing this book?
A: I have always been interested in trying to find simple something solutions to complex problems, and I often find myself saying ‘If everyone did this one simple thing – then what appears to be a big problem would turn into a much smaller and more easily solvable problem.’ The book is a collection of more than 50 of these ideas, but please don’t roll your eyes, I have worked to make them very straight forward and easy to read. You don’t have to be an expert in any of these subjects. The point of this book is to show that when we cut through all the noise and confusion, often the solutions to tough problems are right in front of us. And these solutions don’t have to be expensive or time consuming. Often they just take a few minutes of targeted effort to bring about truly important changes on a massive scale.
Q: Does this book lean left or right?
A: Neither. This book is for anyone who has ever been overwhelmed by the problems facing us. The book takes a good hard look at some of our major problems and for each of them it explains in clear terms what the problem is, how we got to where we are, and then as concisely as possible offers relatively simple solutions to the problem. People of all political persuasions as well as those who have little interest in politics will find Better Than We Found It refreshingly different.