Sad Men Podcast
November 6, 2015
I’ve started a new podcast project, telling the stories of how a generation of men and women writers survived the Great Depression.
You can find the Sad Men Podcast for free at iTunes and at SoundCloud.
My first episode ponders the bloody legacy of the great horror radio writer, Arch Oboler.
It is a companion piece to my Los Angeles Review of Books essay about the history of scary radio and podcasts.
The Spirit of 1934
October 30, 2015
I just published “Belabored Empires” in The Awl, an essay about how a ragtag group of journalists built the newspaper unions that still stand today.
Here’s an excerpt: “In the darkest days of the Great Depression, Heywood Broun, a sportswriter more famous for his gambling exploits during the Roaring Twenties and for sneaking shots of gin during meetings than his reportage, haphazardly transformed journalism with a newspaper column.”
These stories matter now more than ever as digital reporters around the country unionize.
The Legend of Euchre
June 15, 2015
This summer, I wrote about the card game of euchre at The Awl.
Follow this link to read “The People’s Card Game.” Here’s an excerpt:
“These days, most Americans don’t even recognize the word “euchre,” but it has been kept alive by loyal bands of Midwestern card players who live in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, a geographical body dubbed the ‘Euchre Belt.’”
Star Wars Wars
May 23, 2015
After visiting the Star Wars Celebration convention with my daughter, I wrote an essay for deviantART about the hundreds of stories lost when Disney decided not to include the Expanded Universe in the upcoming films.
Thousands of fans were hurt by the revelation, and I interviewed a few Expanded Universe fans to find out how they felt about the change. The Expanded Universe is “a mighty mythology that filled gaps in the Star Wars story for millions of fans like me—a huge bookshelf of novels, comics and fan art.”
Here’s more: “In fact, Disney nearly destroyed this imaginary universe in a single press release. The Expanded Universe characters were exiled in a single sentence: In order to give maximum creative freedom to the filmmakers and also preserve an element of surprise and discovery for the audience, Star Wars Episodes VII-IX will not tell the same story told in the post-Return of the Jedi Expanded Universe.”
Free Born Reading Newsletter
April 20, 2015
In Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age, I share hundreds of books and apps that parents can use with kids. Now that the book is published, I still find great new apps and books every week.
To keep parents and kids informed, I launched a free newsletter for parents. Follow the link below to subscribe for free book, eBook, app and craft recommendations every issue.