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Grapevine : September 2011
30 September 2011 appointed committee member (ACM) on the trustees' Literature Com- mittee (TLC). Many of the questions I was asked are lost to me, but one I recall: Would I be able to work within the commit- tee process? e question had more meaning than I understood at the time. My years of service asanACMontheTLC were from 1999 to 2003. Essentially, the charge of the committee was to review existing literature and, where the Confer- ence expressed a need, to oversee the develop- ment of new resources. Uniquely, the impetus for new publishing initiatives comes from the Fellow- ship itself; an AA area or local intergroup or even an individual AA member may submit a proposal for consideration. ose pro- posals that the committee decides merit further exploration are passed on to the corresponding Conference committee. Should the Conference committee agree with the TLC, the proposal is moved forward for discussion by the whole Conference. Assuming the Conference votes in favor of the proposal, it then be- comes an advisory action and the TLC is charged with seeing to the comple- tion of the project. Although AA has a pub- lishing function through its two corporations, Alco- holics Anonymous World Services (AAWS) and the Grapevine Corporation, the resources it publishes in any given year are gen- erally few in comparison with the list of a com- mercial publisher. And yet, by AA standards, the four years in which I was privileged to serve were a busy period: Projects in- cluded the fourth edition of Alcoholics Anonymous: Experience, Strength, and Hope, an anthology of sto- ries dropped from the first three editions of the Big Book; the Black/African American pamphlet; and a revision of the pamphlet "Time to Start Living" (now called "AA for the Older Alcoholic"), among others. e committee met quarterly during General Service Board week- ends and, when needed, subcommittees would participate in teleconfer- ences in the interim. e committee included a class A, or nonalcoholic trustee; a general service trustee; an AAWS and Grapevine director, a GSO sta member who served as secretary (a misnomer, given the Conference knowledge and experience these members brought to the discussions); and the director of GSO's Publica- tions Department. Compared with a number of committee members, I was a virtual walk-on, with some but not vast general service experience---at the time, I was serving as a DCMC--- AA groups can be as dysfunctional as they need to be, but that can never be the case at the level of the Conference, the General Service Board, and the General Service O ce.