Skip to Navigation Skip to Content

Required Reading: Douglas McGray

After reporting on the publishing experiments turning up around San Francisco, we asked the city’s writers what they’re reading these days, and they were happy to share. Look for Required Reading every week. 

Douglas McGray has a voracious appetite for all things media--and the unexpected. McGray brings stories to life (on stage) as editor in chief of Pop-Up Magazine. The New America Foundation fellow also contributes to The New Yorker, This American Life, and, of course, the Twitterverse

Media Diet: My four main food groups are The New York Times, The New Yorker, NPR, and ESPN. Then I snack throughout the day on links from people I follow on Twitter. Mother Jones reporter @macmcclelland has been covering the Gulf oil spill and Haiti for the past few months, and following her, you feel like you're there.

Books: Gary Shteyngart's Super Sad True Love Story (hilarious) and a galley of Rebecca Solnit's new atlas of San Francisco, Infinite City (interesting idea: telling stories with old-fashioned maps).

New Magazines: I love to root for new magazines, especially when they spring up in California. I admire The Thing Quarterly, which pushes the definition of a periodical about as far as it can go, Pictory, and Longshot. I just got my first issue of Slake, a new book-like quarterly out of LA that has gotten off to a fast start, and I've been a fan of Good since I first met the gang there, before they launched. I'm really looking forward to my friend Evan Ratliff's new phone-and-tablet-based magazine, The Atavist. Each issue will be a single long, immersive feature. He's a New Yorker now, but he has roots here, and he's Pop-Up Magazine's story editor, so I'm convinced there's some San Francisco in the project's DNA.