William McKeen (Outlaw Journalist: The Life and Times of Hunter S. Thompson), chairman of the University of Florida journalism department, will be a featured author at the 2008 Times Festival of Reading. McKeen lives on a farm outside Gainesville with his wife, seven children, five horses, six chickens, a dog and a bunny.
What is on your nightstand?
I always have some fun rock book going on, and right now I'm re-reading Buddy Holly by Ellis Amburn. We're coming up on the 50th anniversary of his death.
And then there's The Other Half: The Life of Jacob Riis and the World of Immigrant America written by Tom Buk-Swienty. I think I was 7 when my sister came home with Riis' How the Other Half Lives. I never forgot it. It was the first time anyone took photos of poverty. When I start teaching a class, I use him as a role model on what journalism ought to be.
Do you ever listen to audiobooks?
Absolutely I listen to audiobooks. In particular I enjoy listening to works by Jane Austen and Charles Dickens.
Piper Castillo, Times staff writer