about the book
When Drew Hastings was seven years old, his father, also named Drew Hastings, left the family, remarried, and had another son, named Drew Hastings. “Suddenly there were three Drew Hastings,” Hastings writes, “me, the one who left me, and the one who replaced me.” And so begins a life-long pursuit of a name, and one long, slow skid toward the realization that we’re all just making it up as we go along.
The son of a single mother, Hastings picks his way through suburban and urban Ohio, obsessed with proving himself against the backdrop of the counterculture of the Sixties and Seventies. He opens a paper shredding business, tries his hand as a rug salesman, even dabbles in muskrat trapping. Most enterprises end in disaster and nothing lasts long. Finally someone suggests standup comedy—friends always said he was funny, plus the idea of ‘Drew Hastings’ on marquees all over the country is too much to pass up. He moves to Hollywood where he flirts with fame but can’t quite bring himself to grovel long enough. And just as a dark depression takes hold, he finally bolts, buys a farm in rural Appalachian Ohio, and at the age of fifty, starts over, breeding cattle, developing real estate, and yes, becoming the mayor of Hillsboro, Ohio.
Refreshingly honest and darkly funny, Chasing Drew Hastings is a wide-ranging memoir of a life ruled by misadventure and coincidence, growing up a confused kid and striving to find out what it means to be a man. Drawing on everything from small town politics to the ambition and malaise of show biz, Drew Hastings reckons with American masculinity, fatherhood, and inheritance head on. Unlikely, irreverent, and wholly original, the result is endlessly entertaining, and perhaps even inadvertently revelatory.
Release date: March 2022
Available in hardback, paperback, & ebook
at your favorite book store or on Amazon here.
Audiobook due: March 2023
a note from drew
This book, like many, started out as one thing and morphed into something very different by the time I finished it. I originally thought I was doing a book of humorous stories and essays some of which audiences had heard me tell as spoken word pieces. I had tons of material written and kept seeing certain repeating themes but didn't know how it fit together. I spent ages trying to cut-and-paste my way to a meaningful book but was just getting more neurotic by the year. Then, three years ago after a standup show in Indiana, a young man approached me. "Hi Mr. Hastings. Just thought I'd say Hello and see what you been up to." I barely looked up as I signed an autograph. "I've been working on a book," I replied. He came back with, "That's what you told me when I saw you five years ago." I. was. mortified. The next morning, his words still echoing in my head, I sat down at my desk and stayed there five days a week for the next three years until this book came together. So, Thank You to that blunt young man in Indiana for forcing me to get serious.