William Least Heat-Moon
|William Least Heat-Moon|
William Least Heat-Moon (2008)
|Born||William Lewis Trogdon
August 27, 1939
Kansas City, Missouri
|Ethnicity||English, Irish and Osage ancestry|
|Education||Bachelor's, master's, and Ph.D. degrees in English
Bachelor's degree in photojournalism
|Alma mater||University of Missouri|
|Genres||Deep map travel literature|
|Notable work(s)||Blue Highways|
William Least Heat-Moon, the byname of William Lewis Trogdon (born August 27, 1939) is an American travel writer of English, Irish and Osage ancestry. He is the author of a bestselling trilogy of topographical U.S. travel writing.
William's father is Heat-Moon, his elder brother is Little Heat-Moon, hence the Heat-Moon name. Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Least Heat-Moon attended the University of Missouri where he earned bachelor's, master's, and Ph.D. degrees in English, as well as a bachelor's degree in photojournalism. He was a member of the Beta-Theta chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon. He also served as a professor of English at the university.
Blue Highways, which spent 42 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list in 1982–83, is a chronicle of a three-month-long road trip that Least Heat Moon took throughout the United States in 1978 after losing his teaching job and separating from his first wife. He traveled 13,000 miles, as much as possible on secondary roads (often drawn on maps in blue, especially in the old-style Rand McNally road atlas) and tried to avoid cities. Living out of the back of his van, he visited small towns such as Nameless, Tennessee; Hachita, New Mexico; and Bagley, Minnesota to find places in America untouched by fast food chains and interstate highways. The book records encounters in roadside cafés as well as his search for something greater than himself.
In addition to the trilogy, Moon also wrote Columbus in the Americas (2002), a brief history of Christopher Columbus' journeys and Roads to Quoz (2008). The latter is another "road book" like his former trilogy, but it differs in the sense that it is "not one long road trip, but a series of shorter ones" over the years between books. Robert Sullivan of the New York Times Book Review commented that Heat-Moon's point "is serendipity and joyous disorder."
- Blue Highways: A Journey Into America. Fawcett, 1982. ISBN 0-449-21109-6
- The Red Couch: A Portrait of America. With Kevin Clarke and Horst Wackerbarth. Olympic Marketing Corp, 1984. ISBN 0-912383-05-4
- A Glass of Handmade. The Atlantic, November 1987.
- PrairyErth (A Deep Map). Houghton Mifflin, 1991. ISBN 0-395-48602-5
- River Horse: The Logbook of a Boat Across America. Houghton Mifflin, 1999. ISBN 0-395-63626-4
- Columbus in the Americas (Turning Points in History). Wiley, 2002. ISBN 0-471-21189-3
- Roads to Quoz: An American Mosey. Little, Brown and Company, October 2008, ISBN 978-0-316-11025-9
- Here, There, Elsewhere: Stories from the Road. Little, Brown and Company (January 8, 2013), ISBN 0316110248
- Sullivan, Robert (December 14, 2008), "On the Road Again, Again", New York Times Book Review: 8
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: William Least Heat-Moon|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: William Least Heat-Moon|
- 1983, 1984, 1991 Real Audio interviews with William Least Heat-Moon at Wired for Books.org by Don Swaim
- 1 January, 2010 interview with William Least Heat-Moon by Tom Ashbrook for National Public Radio, On Point
- Booknotes interview with Least Heat-Moon on River-Horse: A Voyage Across America, January 16, 2000.
- In Depth interview with Least Heat-Moon, August 7, 2005