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Monday, May 24, 2010

If you walk into Barnes and Noble, Border's or, ideally, your local niche bookseller today, you'll likely find a copy of "Common Nonsense: Glenn Beck and the Triumph of Ignorance," the first book by Alex Zaitchik, my roommate from sophomore year at Trinity College in Connecticut. Last year when I traveled to El Mirador in Guatemala on assignment, Alex came down to Tampa from Brooklyn to housesit and begin researching the life and backstory of Glenn Beck.

In case you've been living out of the country or somehow failed to view a news web site within the past year, Beck is a conservative author, radio host, television host and pundit who has courted controversy with his avowed anti-Obama, anti-big government ideology. Beck is widely published and his books are routinely big sellers that crack the NY Times bestseller list, often debuting in pole position.

After spending the bulk of last summer interviewing Tampa radio personalities (Beck got his start in Tampa before ascending the ranks of Clear Channel), Alex began crafting the story of Beck from his early drug-fueled failure as a morning DJ to his seismic ascension to prime time. Within six months of starting the project, the book's earliest draft was completed and Alex requested that I take his picture for the dust jacket. I captured his portrait in an alley in Ybor City, behind King Corona cafe where Alex penned much of the book in a fog of cigar smoke.

So, today is the official publication date and Alex's triumphant first publication is in widespread circulation. Check it out at amazon here: Common Nonsense
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