Friday, January 25, 2019

The Return of C-Mac

The University of California Press has published a paperback edition of my Carey McWilliams biography--this time with a fabulous foreword by Mike Davis. An advance copy of American Prophet appeared in my mailbox last week. The official publication date is March 5, but you can buy it here now.

My respect for McWilliams hasn't diminished a bit since I began the research more than 15 years ago. His brains, range, versatility, and classic prose style still floor me. And as I research Hunter Thompson's literary formation, McWilliams once again looms large. It was McWilliams, of course, who gave Thompson the idea for his story on the Hells Angels. After McWilliams ran it in The Nation, Thompson parlayed it into his first bestseller.

The good folks at Truthdig ran a Q&A on McWilliams and my longstanding interest in his achievement--often in the face of fierce resistance from formidable adversaries.

Labels: ,

Zodiac Killer Podcast

Some far-flung friends and former students have contacted me after listening to "Monster: The Zodiac Killer." It's a 15-part podcast from iHeart Radio. The production team taped the interview here at the house toward the end of last semester; next thing I knew they had it wrapped up. Their last podcast, on the so-called Atlanta Monster, was downloaded 36 million times.

They asked me to set the stage a bit in Episode 1--what was happening in the San Francisco Bay Area when the Zodiac killer first struck. In Episode 6, I get a few more words in edgewise (starting at the 17:30 mark) on the role of the media.

They also interviewed Duffy Jennings, who was working at the San Francisco Chronicle at the time. As noted earlier, Duffy actually took one of my classes at San Francisco State University. After a long career in journalism and public relations, he came back to finish his degree. Duffy's memoir, which I read in manuscript, is due out soon. Here's the go-to spot for All Things Jennings.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Media Roundup

Deutschlandfunk Kultur interviewed me about Bay Area student protests in the 1960s. Here's the radio piece and website summary; Scott Saul and I get a few words in during the last nine minutes or so. Naturally, my remarks sound smarter in German.

I was also interviewed for a 15-part podcast on the Zodiac killer. The first two episodes are available now. Here's a Hollywood Reporter article on the series and its creators. The last time out, this team produced a series that was downloaded 36 million times. For the new one, they interviewed former San Francisco Chronicle reporter Duffy Jennings. Duffy, it turns out, took my course at San Francisco State University when he returned to complete his degree about ten years ago. It's not very often that students bring that kind of experience to the classroom.