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Sobczak talks about background, writing with Rotarians

By Staff | Feb 27, 2009

It is a common notion that most people have the ability to write at least one book based on their own knowledge or life experience. That very notion might be called into question for a few of us, but not for Sanibel’s own Charles Sobczak.

Charlie has authored six books as varied and complex in subject matter and content as his own family’s colorful history. Once again, Sobczak came to Rotary to introduce his most recent book “Chain of Fools,” a fictional memoir based on genealogical research, public records and family stories of his paternal grandparents.

As Charlie stated, this was a difficult book for him to write, ugly truths emerged and sorrowful tales. Is this a family legacy that anyone wants to expose? It took some time to answer that question, and Charlie indicates he himself had trouble coming to terms with the unpleasant truths he uncovered.

While wrestling with the storyline for “Chain of Fools,” he took time out to write “Alligators, Sharks & Panthers” (straight-forward facts, no personal emotional contend). “Chain of Fools” ended up being a fictional story entwined – or maybe based upon – his real family history.

While talking about the book, he often referenced his sons and their accomplishments, surely he was reflecting on the history of his family and how that history is not repeating itself in the present or upcoming generation. The book is dedicated to his mother, Harriet B. Sobczak, who he credits with teaching him, that love can break the chain. There is a lot of love and respect in the Sobczak family, so there is no doubt that the chain of fools is no more.

The next book for Sobczak is already on the drawing board: “Living Sanibel,” a field guide for Sanibel detailing information regarding birds, mammals, fish, insects, fauna, flora, bike path, kayak trails, hiking trails, etc. “Living Sanibel” will be written in conjunction with the Sanibel-Captiva Conservation Foundation (SCCF) and the Sanibel Audubon Society.

The Sanibel-Captiva Rotary Club meets at 7 a.m. every Friday at the Beachview Restaurant, located at 100 Par View Drive in Sanibel. If you would like more information regarding the San-Cap Rotary Club, call Shirley Jewell at 337-1099.