David Owen (author)
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Education and early career
David Owen grew up in Kansas City, Missouri, and graduated from The Pembroke-Country Day School in 1973. He attended Colorado College, then transferred to Harvard University, where he was an editor of the Harvard Lampoon, as was Ann Hodgman. He graduated from Harvard in 1978 with a degree in English.
Career in journalism
Owen has been a staff writer for The New Yorker since 1991 and a contributing editor of Golf Digest since 1995; previously he was a contributing editor of The Atlantic Monthly and a senior writer for Harper's Magazine. For six years he was a regular columnist for Home Magazine. He was also a contributing editor and columnist for Spy.
Owen won an Alicia Patterson Journalism Fellowship in 1984 to research and write about standardized testing in the American education system.
- The Conundrum: How Scientific Innovation, Increased Efficiency, and Good Intentions Can Make Our Energy and Climate Problems Worse (Riverhead, 2012) ISBN 1594485615.
- Green Metropolis: Why Living Smaller, Living Closer, and Driving Less Are the Keys to Sustainability (Riverhead, 2009) ISBN 978-1-59448-882-5.
Many of Owen's books are expansions (or collections) of his previous magazine articles. He writes with wry humor on a curious set of non-fiction topics, including:
- Golf (“Hit and Hope,” “The Making of the Masters,” “My Usual Game,” and “The Chosen One,” a profile of Tiger Woods. In addition, he co-edited a collection of golf stories titled “Lure of the Links.”)
- Home building materials (“Sheetrock and Shellac,” “The Walls Around Us”)
- Inventors and inventions (“Copies in Seconds,” “The Man Who Invented Saturday Morning”)
- Fatherhood and domestic life (“The First National Bank of Dad,” “Around the House”)
- American education issues (“High School,” about the four months he spent pretending to be a high-school student, and “None of the Above,” an exposé of the standardized-testing industry)
- Sheetrock and Shellac: A Thinking Person's Guide to the Art and Science of Home Improvement (Simon & Schuster, 2006) ISBN 978-0-7432-5120-4 ISBN 0-7432-5120-2
- Copies in Seconds: How a Lone Inventor and an Unknown Company Created the Biggest Communication Breakthrough Since Gutenberg—Chester Carlson and the Birth of Xerox (Simon & Schuster, 2004) ISBN 978-0-7432-5118-1 ISBN 0-7432-5118-0
- Hit and Hope: How the Rest of Us Play Golf (Simon & Schuster, 2003) ISBN 978-0-7432-2237-2 ISBN 0-7432-2237-7
- The First National Bank of Dad: The Best Way to Teach Kids About Money (pap. subtitle: 'A Foolproof Method for Teaching Your Kids the Value of Money) (Simon & Schuster, 2003) ISBN 978-0-7432-0480-4 ISBN 0-7432-0480-8
- The Chosen One: Tiger Woods and the Dilemma of Greatness (Simon & Schuster, 2001) ISBN 978-0-7432-2234-1 ISBN 0-7432-2234-2
- The Complete Office Golf (Workman Publishing,1999) ISBN 978-0-7611-1593-9 ISBN 0761115935
- The Making of the Masters: Clifford Roberts, Augusta National, and Golf's Most Prestigious Tournament (Simon & Schuster, 1999) ISBN 978-0-684-86721-2 ISBN 0-684-86721-4
- (Foreword only) Princeton Review: Cracking the Sat With Sample Tests on CD-ROM, 2000 Edition (Cracking the SAT and PSAT With Sample Tests), by Adam Robinson and John Katzman (Princeton Review, 1999) ISBN 978-0-375-75404-3 ISBN 0375754040
- Around the House : Reflections on Life Under a Roof (pap. title: Life Under a Leaky Roof) (Villard, 1998) ISBN 978-0-679-45655-1 ISBN 0-679-45655-4
- (As co-editor:) Lure of the Links: Great Golf Stories—an Anthology (Atlantic Monthly Press, 1997) ISBN 978-0-87113-685-5 ISBN 0-87113-685-6
- (Foreword only) College Admissions: the Student Access Guide to College Admissions by Adam Robinson and John Katzman (Princeton Review, 1993) ISBN 978-0-679-74590-7 ISBN 0679745904
- The Walls Around Us: The Thinking Person's Guide to How a House Works (Villard, 1991) ISBN 978-0-394-57824-8 ISBN 0-394-57824-4
- The Man Who Invented Saturday Morning: And Other Adventures in American Enterprise (Villard, 1988) ISBN 978-0-394-56810-2 ISBN 0-394-56810-9
- None of the Above: Behind the Myth of Scholastic Aptitude (pap. subtitle: The Truth Behind the SATs) (Houghton Mifflin Company, 1985) ISBN 978-0-395-35540-4 ISBN 0-395-35540-0
- High School: Undercover With the Class of '80 (Viking Press, 1981) ISBN 978-0-670-37149-5 ISBN 0-670-37149-1
- "Books: Turning Tricks – The rise and fall of contract bridge," The New Yorker, September 17, 2007
- "Shouts & Murmurs: Passing," The New Yorker, April 2, 2007
- "Precocity Dept.: Bird" (profile of jazz saxophonist Elijah Shiffer), The New Yorker, July 24, 2006
- "Annals of Culture: The Soundtrack of Your Life – Muzak in the realm of retail theatre," The New Yorker, April 10, 2006
- "Pencils Up! The S.A.T.’s Watchdog," The New Yorker, April 3, 2006 
- "Shouts & Murmurs: Your Three Wishes – F.A.Q.," The New Yorker, January 16, 2006 
- "Hey Pal Dept.: Old Hack" (story about former cab driver and taxi historian Bobby Lowich), The New Yorker, January 26, 2004
- "Our Local Correspondents: Green Manhattan," The New Yorker, October 18, 2004 
- "Shouts & Murmurs: 8 Simple Rules For Dating My Ex-Wife," The New Yorker, January 12, 2004
- "Shouts & Murmurs: A Naturalist’s Notes," The New Yorker, August 11, 2003
- "Dept. of Procurement: The Meat Doctor," The New Yorker, June 30, 2003
- "Shouts & Murmurs: Remake" (plot outline for 2003 remake of It's a Wonderful Life), The New Yorker, April 21, 2003
- "NASA, Spinning: Was the space shuttle useful? Not really." Slate Magazine, posted February 4, 2003
- "Mom and Pop Dept.: The Hundred Club," The New Yorker, December 23, 2002
- "Books: Measure for Measure – How the metric system conquered the world-almost," The New Yorker, October 14, 2002
- "Life and Letters: From Race to Chase – Yale’s Stephen L. Carter writes a thriller," The New Yorker, June 3, 2002
- "Notes & Comment: Children and Money – Training a little investor," The Atlantic Monthly, April 1998 
- "Where Toys Come From," The Atlantic Monthly, October 1986,
- "Travel: Innocents Abroad – Making Britain fun for a child can be fun for a parent, too,"" The Atlantic Monthly, November 1996
- "Shouts & Murmurs: The Afterlife – Cutting Back," The New Yorker, January 7, 2008
- Owen, David (1 December 2008). "Talk of the Town: Here to There Dept.: Wheeling". The New Yorker 84 (39): 31–32. Retrieved 17 April 2009. Cycling the Waterfront Greenway, Manhattan.
- Owen, David (1 November 2010). "The Talk of the Town: Here to There Dept.: Tornado Man". The New Yorker 86 (34): 40, 42. Retrieved 6 November 2011. Reed Timmer
- "Contributors: David Owen". The New Yorker. Retrieved 17 April 2009.
- "Contributor Profile: David Owen". Golf Digest.
- Alicia Patterson Journalism Fellowship
- Archive of contributions to The New Yorker
- David Owen's website
- David Owen's golf website
- Roberts, Russ. "David Owen Podcasts". EconTalk. Library of Economics and Liberty.