Sonny West: Taking Care Of Business?

According to some sources, the new Sonny West book will be coming out but at this time, no specific details are available yet. Apparently, he tried to get a publisher before writing and finishing the book and he had an agent contact some publishers but it was turned down at that point in time. Sonny West states; "The book will be published and that also at this time, the manuscript is not finished." West started work on the follow-up book to "Elvis: What Happened?" with Marshall Terrill which is tentatively titled, "Taking Care of Business". Regarding the new book, West said 'Elvis: What Happened?' covered mainly the years from 1970 to 1976 during Presley's downward spiral." The new book, he said, "will cover his years with Elvis from 1960 to 1976, the aftermath of "Elvis: What Happened?" to his thoughts on Elvis today." West said the book will contain many stories that have never been told before, with many never seen before photos from West's personal collection and photos donated from the Russ Howe collection. The original book, co-authored with Red West and Dave Hebler, sold more than 4 Million copies and was considered the best-selling original paperback when it was released in 1977.
Source: The Elvis Express / Updated: Mar 21, 2005 
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Reactions (profilecontact) wrote on Apr 1, 2005report abuse
My name is Marshall Terrill, and I'm the co-author on Sonny West's new proposed book, "Still Taking Care of Business." I'd like to clarify some information so that everyone is getting it "straight from the horse's mouth" and not second-hand.
First and foremost, the idea for the book came as a result of Sonny West wanting to tell his story for the entire 16 years he was with Elvis, not just the last years when Elvis was in the grips of his addiction to prescription medicine.
Sonny both defends and regrets his involvement regarding, "Elvis, What Happened?" He defends his stance that he was one of a handful of people who challenged Elvis to do something about his problem, and I think time has proven him correctly. He regrets that the book was written in a sensationalistic style and that his love for the man didn't come across as well as he would have liked. That's the reason for the second book, which we have been working on since 2002.
Second, the book is a little more than halfway finished. As the author of eight books, only once have I sold a book project prior to actually writing the entire manuscript. That was even true in the case of the book I did with Rex and Elisabeth Mansfield called "Sergeant Presley" and a book I did called "Steve McQueen: Portrait of an American Rebel," which turned out to be a best-seller. That is also true of a book I recently finished on the life of basketball legend "Pistol" Pete Maravich. The book, which took me six years to write without a contract, will be published as well.
I have no doubt when we're finished "Still Taking Care of Business" that a major publisher will snap it up. That has simply been a trend in the publishing business for a long time and has become even more prevalent today.
I think once the book is finished everyone will find it not only refreshingly funny and poignant, but filled with great pictures, new anecdotes and a keen insight into Elvis. Best regards, Marshall Terrill
cathyreno (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 31, 2005report abuse
Hi all I have read 'Elvis what happen' and 'revelations of the Memphis Mafia' and have seen 'All the kings men'
They all came across to me as being so angry that Elvis had left them so soon. Probably realized that they are on their own some with a family how are they going to survive?
Some adapted some didn't. I can understand their motives and most of their stories were sincere, funny. I met Red West , got the impression that the first book by him and Sonny was half written in anger and if Sonny wants to clear up a few things in his head and share it good luck to him. If the demand is there these books will be written, I like to see them written with a good heart thats all
pacer1965 (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 28, 2005report abuse
I will not be buying Sonnys book and its nothing to do with Elvis What Happened.I am just not interested.I dont buy these type of books anymore.The only things I collect of Elvis now are cds and dvds.I have got so many books I dont know what to do with them.The last Elvis book I got was in 1998 and I still have not read it.
PresleysBaby (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 27, 2005report abuse
I personally look forward to the release of Sonny's book.
I have "met" Sonny several times, and find him to be friendly, courteous and attentive to the Elvis fans who talk to him. Sonny has recently been a special guest of the TCB Concert Productions shows. I was in the audience twice recently when Sonny told several of his "Elvis stories" in person. Sonny speaks of Elvis with respect, humor, and I believe, a geniune love for the man. Sonny also spends a lot of time after the shows talking about Elvis with anyone who approaches him, and seems to geniunely love sharing his stories with the fans. I believe his book will be written in the same manner. I am also acquainted with the co-author, Marshall Terrill, and familiar with his writing style. I believe the book will be written with humor, candor and integrity.
I'd like to say this to those who judge and criticize Sonny based on the book "Elvis - What Happened" - If you haven't spent a lot of time with anyone who is addicted to drugs, you can't possibly judge the reactions or the responsibilities of those who have. I'm speaking from personal experience as my only sister is a recovering addict. I personally know the total hell which family members and friends go through trying to deal with a loved ones addiction. Like Elvis, my sister's addiction began with abuse of prescription drugs. Unfortunately, in her case, the prescription drug addiction progressed to a 15 year battle with heroin addiction. Everyone around her was forced to either deal with her addiction as best they could, or totally cut her out of their lives. I believe it was the same for the people who worked for, and lived with Elvis, and it couldn't have been easy on them.
Based on other posts regarding this book - It seems simple for Elvis fans to say "Well, ok, so the guys around Elvis had to put up with his "mood swings", - Trust me when I say you can't possibly understand what that phrase "mood swings" truly means if you haven't personally dealt with the reality of an addict's violent personality changes, and the things they say and do. You have to really love them to put up with it, and nothing erases the pain of seeing them abuse themselves and others around them. My point is - Don't feel qualified to judge Sonny or anyone else who has dealt with addiction on a personal level unless you truly have walked a mile in their shoes!
That said - I've been an Elvis fan all my life, and I always will be. I realistically recognize the fact that he was only human like the rest of us. Elvis never once asked us to believe he was perfect, or above making the mistakes that human beings make. The fact that he was truly "one of us" is one of many things I admire most about him. If you love and respect him as I do, that should be all that matters. I will definitely buy Sonny's book when it is published. I sincerely hope it is written with as much affection for Elvis, style and humor as his stories are told in person.
elvislady (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 26, 2005report abuse
i agree with sean ryan (elvis what happend )was not has bad as people expect and you can,t comment on it till you have read it yourself.
King 14 (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 25, 2005report abuse
Hi All -I am looking forward to Sonnys new book -I had hoped that Red,Sonny and Dave might have got together to do a follow up to their original book but from a new perspective with the benefit of hinsight. What most fans want ,I believe is a book with some sort of perspective on the things that happened in Elvis,s life-warts and all.Do we really get this -books seem to portry he as either a complete saint or sinner,completely broken/helpless ete.Dave Hebler is a decent man with whom I have corresponded recently but whilst standing by what he said in "What Happened" still speaks very positively of Elvis admitting today that had he written the book now it would be with greater compassion and understanding.He has told me that even in those last years the good times outweighed the bad by a large margin and that books like Albert Goldmans are heavily and unrealistically biased. I hope some sense of perspective will be given in Sonnys book.If commercial exploitation is a worry as it was when "What Happened" was released how about Sonny donating the profits to a drug rehab. charity-this would be a fantastic gesture to his memory of Elvis and closer to the stated intentions of his first book -how about it Sonny (or Red or Dave) Regards To All
Gogo (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 24, 2005report abuse
Do we really need another tell book? Why is another one needed? Especially by someone who has already put one out. Enough is enough. And the poor sales and lack of demand show most people agree.
Sean Ryan (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 22, 2005report abuse
Elvos you make me laugh.You regard Elvis as your friend? What sort of comment is that? I didnt know you was part of the Memphis Mafia? Your an Elvis fan, same as me and everyone else.Unless you spent 20 years with Elvis and lived with him day in day out, i dont think we will be having a book from you.I doubt you have read Elvis:What Happened? or even met Sonny.Your comments prove that you know nothing about the people who were around Elvis or how that lifestyle was.As i have said, lets all wait till the book is reviewed before putting it down.
Elvos (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 22, 2005report abuse
I can imagine that people "slag down"Sonny! Don't forget that he co-wrote Elvis what happened? Because they could'nt work for Elvis anymore(for whatever reason)they had to slender his name. What a way to treat a friend!
I see Elvis as a Friend and whoever treats my friends like this !,I would not like to have anything to do with those so called friends!It was like that he could'nt have it his way .so then he tells everyone how bad Elvis was. THAT is what i call immature. But then again people can change. But I still can Imagane that people hate him for that! Just my opinion. Slender my name all over the place. do anything that you want to do, but uh uh honey don't write that book ...
circleG (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 22, 2005report abuse
i have 'elvis:what happened?' and i've met mr and mrs sonny west. i hope sonny includes the story of how he was introduced to elvis at the ice rink. it is absolutely hilarious, i laughed out loud. elvis had such a wicked sense of humour at times - just like me! good luck with your book sonny.
tcbflash (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 22, 2005report abuse
I will buy the book just to see what he has to say. Since when is it a "crime" for the memphis mafia or family members to write a book about Elvis? They have every right to tell thier side of the story. I think if he was there than he has pretty good insight? How do we know it is going to be "harping" on the negative? If it is rubbish then put the book on e-bay and get ride of it. I have heard some positive things about Elvis from some of these guys. It is not all bad!
Bill E. Burk (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 22, 2005report abuse
As of 17.31 Memphis time, this date, Terrill (1) has not finished the manuscript; and (2) has NO publisher come forward to offer to print this book. You're reading it FIRST here, but this afternoon I've asked to enter negotiations to publish Sonny's book for him under my imprint -- knowing many of Sonny's stories and Marshall's style of writing. I think it will be a definite winner.
CD King (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 22, 2005report abuse
I will surely NOT buy this book when it comes out. I'll save my money for the next Joe Tunzi, Ernst Jorgensen REAL book.
Sean Ryan (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 21, 2005report abuse
I agree. I have also met Sonny and found him to be very genuine indeed and he took time out to have a long chat with me and my friends.He was very friendly and I could tell he enjoyed chatting with us as we did with him. I dont think there is anyone i,ve come across who has met Sonny has bad things to say about him.Most people who think Sonny is a bad person i bet have never even met him or even read Elvis-What happened? .I have read it recently and its no where near as bad as people made out when it was first published.You have to look at it from Sonnys point of view as well as Elvis's.That why some peoples ignorance is obvious from their one-sided opinions.
roytcbintheuk (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 21, 2005report abuse
We must always remember that elvis chose sonny to work for him and he did for 16 years and i can imagine that sonny along with the other members of the entourage got an hard time from their boss from time to time and were helpless to help him with his drug dependacy. I must also add that i have met sonny and he seems like a genuine nice guy and if he makes a few bucks out of elvis for his memoirs well why not after all he is not the only one and if we did not get these releases we would be the first to complain.
tangerinebull (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 21, 2005report abuse
With friends like the wests who needs enemys,
Sean Ryan (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 21, 2005report abuse
Here we go again.Lets all start to slag down Sonny again cause we are so perfect.Why dont all the people who are against Sonny's book wait for it to be reviewed before making any comments.As for mtm1a , your comments just prove how immature you are if this book coming out upsets you so much.
Play it James (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 21, 2005report abuse
I will surely buy the book as soon as it comes out on the market. We'll probably read things we've already seen before but you can't make history twice. I just hope it will be well-detailed and according to his own personal views as a bodyguard of Elvis...
Pedro Nuno (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 21, 2005report abuse
It's just Sonny taking care of HIS business!
mtm1a (profilecontact) wrote on Mar 21, 2005report abuse
I`m not getting sucked into anything but will ask this... Stories never told before,or just made up? Also,how many `personal` picture collections do all you guys have of your friend?! I guess times are tough now his employer`s pay has been spent. That`s it from me on this guy.

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