Required Reading: Chris Colin


We ask the city’s writers what they’re reading these days and they answer. Look for Required Reading every Tuesday.

Bernal Heights writer Chris Colin, author of the award-winning What Really Happened to the Class of ’93, has an entirely modern media diet. He’s a frequent contributor to The New York Times,but you’ve probably also read his byline throughout the Bay Area’s media scene: San Francisco Chronicle Magazine, McSweeney’s Quarterly, online food magazine Chow, Mother Jones, and Meatpaper magazine. He also teaches writing at the Writers’ Grotto and is working on a book about the marketing of freedom.

News: “One of my favorite journalists isn't a journalist at all, but an actor. Dan Hoyle's performances at the Marsh ("Tings Dey Happen" and "The Real Americans") combine better reporting, analysis, and prose than 99 percent of anything in print. The first time I saw him in 2007, I just sat there in the dark after it ended, thinking of all the places I'd want him deployed next. How long until they can clone humans? Like six years or something? I hope he's part of the first batch.”

Magazine: “I love Pop-Up Magazine’s live performance issues for, among other things, their promotion of works in progress. The world may be going to hell in a handbasket, but it's often a polished and endlessly focus-grouped handbasket, which makes more casual, sometimes scruffy creations like Pop-Up all the more refreshing. Also, who doesn't want their magazines to be live and 3-D?”

Twitter: “I have a system: After the latest Tea Party news makes the world appear dark and screwed, I read @RobBaedeker of SF's Kasper Hauser comedy group. ‘Just went into Pets Unlimited and bought a billion guinea pigs,’ he tweeted recently, and Sarah Palin's resurgence became 1 percent more bearable. Another tweet from the other day: ‘Shameful: It's 2010, and basset hounds are still getting type-cast as private investigators.’”

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