Three alumni authors have been traveling recently in support of new books published since the beginning of the year.
Ted Shelton DS’84 had his book Business Models for the Social Cloud published by John Wiley & Sons in February. The book investigates the opportunities and challenges present for businesses in the growing convergence of social networking, the mobile internet, and cloud computing. Ted analyzes a 21st-century business model utilizing facets such as co-creation ecosystems rather than hierarchical or linear systems and offers insights for business leaders and entrepreneurs to succeed with emerging technologies – rather than be defeated by them.
Ted is a Managing Director of the U.S. Advisory practice at PwC (formerly PricewaterhouseCoopers), a corporate auditing and consulting firm, where he helps clients and organizations improve their business performance. He has devoted his career to innovation in software development and business management over the past twenty five years.
The latest novel from Peter Rock DS’86 is The Shelter Cycle, published in April by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. The book traces its origins to Peter’s experience working on a Montana cattle ranch in the early 1990s, where his neighbors were devoted followers of the Church Universal and Triumphant. Peter, who teaches writing and literature at Reed College in Portland, Oregon, returned frequently to Montana over the past four years to conduct extensive research and numerous hours of interviews. His resultant novel dramatizes events around the night of March 15, 1990 when thousands of church members entered underground bunkers in anticipation of a nuclear holocaust and the end of the world. The book goes much further to explore the implications for some of the affected individuals twenty years later.
Peter has published five previous novels and a collection of short stories. You can read his reflections on his latest work here or check out one of the publicity events by visiting his author website www.peterrockproject.com. Arrival of “The Shelter Cycle” has been greeted with positive reviews highlighting Peter’s unique creativity and sensitivity.
Journalist and firefighter Zac Unger DS’91 has been making the interview rounds this winter with his most recent book Never Look A Polar Bear in the Eye, a non-fiction look into the condition of polar bear populations at the top of the world that is also a family adventure story. Zac set out in 2008 to write the definitive book about the impending collapse of the species. During his research however, Zac discovered the issues are far more complex than most people realize, and although global warming is a genuine problem for polar bears in general, different sub-populations are affected in different ways, and in fact the polar-wide population has increased in the past forty years.
Zac lived with his wife and three young children for several months in Churchill, Manitoba to experience the most active borderland where humans and polar bears interact. The resulting book is both an investigative report on the politics and science of polar bear conservation, and a first-hand account of life spent shoulder-to-shoulder (if not eye-to-eye) with these amphibious omnivores.
Never Look A Polar Bear in the Eye was published by Da Capo Press in January. Zac has conducted numerous interviews with media outlets in Europe and Asia, as well as in the U.S. ranging from Fox News to NPR. In addition to serving as a paramedic/firefighter in Oakland, California for fifteen years, Zac has written for The Economist, Explore, Men’s Journal, The Atlantic, Slate, and other publications. His previous book, Working Fire, was published in 2005. You can check out his work at www.zacunger.com.