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Discovering Steinbeck's fictions & lies in "Charley" was an accident, but I was the perfect guy to do the job. I'm a veteran newspaper and magazine journalist born and raised in Pittsburgh. I was an editor and writer/reporter/columnist for the Los Angeles Times in the 1980s, the Post-Gazette in the 1990s and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review in the 2000s. My interviews and libertarian op-ed columns were nationally syndicated for about five years at CagleCartoons.com, and I worked briefly for CBS-TV in Hollywood in the late 1970s. My freelance articles, interviews and commentaries have appeared in many of the major newspapers in the USA and in magazines like Reason, Penthouse and Family Circle. I retired from the daily newspaper business in March 2009. "Dogging Steinbeck" is my first book.
Bill Steigerwald had a brilliant plan for showing how much America has changed in the last half century -- or so he thought. He’d simply retrace the 10,000-mile route John Steinbeck took around the USA in 1960 for his beloved bestseller “Travels With Charley.” Then he’d compare the America he saw with the country Steinbeck described in his classic road book. But when the intrepid ex-newspaperman from Pittsburgh started researching Steinbeck’s trip he uncovered a shocking literary scoop. Steinbeck’s iconic nonfiction book was a fraud. “Travels With Charley” was not just full of fiction. It was a deceptive and dishonest account of the great novelist’s actual road trip. Steigerwald made his own road trip in the fall of 2010, exactly 50 years after Steinbeck did. Chasing and fact-checking Steinbeck’s ghost for 11,276 miles and 43 days, meeting hundreds of ordinary Americans, often sleeping in the back of his car in Wal-Mart parking lots, he drove from Maine to California to Texas. Despite the Great Recession and national headlines dripping with gloom and doom, Steigerwald discovered an America along the Steinbeck Highway that was big, empty, rich, safe, clean, prosperous and friendly. He didn’t just reaffirm his faith in America to withstand the long train of abuse from Washington and Wall Street, however. He also exposed the half-century-old myths of “Travels With Charley,” ruffled the PhDs of the country’s top Steinbeck scholars and forced “Charley’s” publisher to finally tell the truth. Steigerwald is a well-traveled reporter and veteran libertarian columnist. With the spirit of a teenage driver, a dogged pursuit of the facts and a refreshing point of view about America proudly located in the heart of Flyover Country not Manhattan, he spins the story of his ride with Steinbeck’s ghost into a provocative, news-making and entertaining American road book.
Have you ever had a dream where you could not move, get away, stay safe, think clearly? Sure you have. Have you experienced any of those things in reality central? Have you ever been drawn towards a sixteen foot monster covered in barnacles and seaweed who is beckoning to you to come closer as it sounds its gong powered by the scend of the sea? Well, I grew up on the Jersey Shore and faced that monster off the mouth of Shark River between Avon-By-The-Sea and Belmar NJ numerous times. It is the feeling of quiet desperation with a musketeer flair that I like to write about from the the foggy mists of New England to the sun bleached shores of Florida. I now have time to write now about these things. Book 2, "SWIRLS AND SHADOWS," A Simon O'Rourke Adventure, is under construction and new challenges will abound for our intrepid characters and, yes, the evildoers as well. Book 1, "Thirteen Pieces" is available in Kindle format NOW on Amazon. Great Summer reading awaits YOU !!!
Sincerely, Rob Seas
This is a tale about my fictional hero and probably my alter ego all rolled into one, Simon O'Rourke and his friends and enemies. Simon is experiencing from time to time some rather strange, some would say otherworldly, happenings that really can't be explained away very easily, at least not in a way that would let you sleep better at night. Don't worry, Simon is as baffled as everybody else, except probably Zed. Who is Zed? That is, Indeed, a worthy question. This tale is centered in New England but meanders back to Florida with a side trip to a Cuban dungeon and is very suitable to curl up with on a rainy day or a day when you want a respite from the terrible tube.
Join Simon who is doing his best to figure things out along with you.......
"Then from the lonely distance comes a sad and ghostly sound; 'Tis tie Shadow Phantom that is calling, like the baying of a hound........."