Rodger Jacobs

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Rodger Jacobs
Born (1959-03-12)March 12, 1959
San Francisco, California, United States
Died July 5, 2016(2016-07-05) (aged 57)
Los Angeles, California, United States
Occupation Journalist, writer, author, film producer, columnist, playwright, editor, screenwriter
Partner(s) Lela Michael
Children Carole Jacobs

Rodger Jacobs (March 12, 1959 – July 5, 2016)[1] was an American journalist, writer, author, film producer, columnist, playwright, editor and screenwriter.[2]


Jacobs was a journalist for publications such as Salon, Los Angeles Review of Books, Las Vegas Sun, Eye, Hustler and PopMatters.[3] He also worked for many years as an AVN award-winning adult film industry screenwriter and trade journalist.[4][5][6]

In 1999, Jacobs wrote an essay, Running with the Wolves: Jack London and the Cult of Masculinity. In 2010, Jacobs provided the preface for Jack London: San Francisco Stories, an anthology for Sydney Samizdat Press.

Go Irish: The Purgatory Diaries of Jason Miller, a play based on actor Jason Miller, known for the role of Father Damien Karras in the film The Exorcist,[7] that Jacobs co-wrote with Tom Flannery, had its world premiere in 2007 and continues to be displayed in various theatrical venues in Pennsylvania and upstate New York with actor Robert Thomas Hughes, a childhood friend of Jason Miller.[7] Writing in Stage magazine, critic Jack Shaw hailed Purgatory Diaries as "a stirring examination of celebrity madness."[8][9] Go Irish was performed again in 2015 by Robert Thomas Hughes.[7]

In 2007, Jacobs wrote and directed a live presentation, The Ragged Promised Land, for the Vesuvio Cafe and The Beat Museum in San Francisco to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the publication of Jack Kerouac's On the Road.[10] In 2009, he released Mr. Bukowski's Wild Ride, a collection of original surrealist fiction, for exclusive consignment sale at City Lights Books in San Francisco; writing in the Self-Publishing Review, author Henry Baum cited the book as "another piece to add to (Bukowski's) towering myth … it also gets to the soul of the man … as funny as any of Bukowski's own writing."[11]

Jacobs' controversial series for the Pulitzer Prize-winning Las Vegas Sun, The New Homeless, about Jacobs and his girlfriend Lela Michael and their experiences with homelessness in Las Vegas,[12][13][14] elicited praise and commentary from LA Weekly,[15] Witness LA,[16] The Awl[17] and La Presse.[18] The series was also the subject of a three part documentary by Katharine Euphrat featuring Rodger Jacobs and Lela Michael.[19][20][21]

Silver Birch Press published Jacobs' original work The Furthest Palm in August 2012.[22] Jacobs describes "Palm" as a series of "heavily autobiographical stories that were woven into the tapestry of a novel", and "postmodern L.A. noir heavily influenced by Raymond Chandler, Leonard Gardner ("Fat City"), and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s "The Pat Hobby Stories", as well as Ernest Hemingway’s "The Nick Adams Stories."

In December 2012, Jacobs' collection of short fiction and novellas, Invisible Ink (The Book Motel), was lauded as the "most exemplary L.A. book of 2012" by Joseph Mailander in his City Watch L.A. column.[23]

Salon and Los Angeles Review of Books published Jacobs' Franz Kafka themed essay in January 2013 entitled Did Kafka Invent Noir?[24]

Jacobs was also a film producer best known for being the screenwriter and producer of the 1998 documentary Wadd: The Life & Times of John C. Holmes.[25][26][27]


Jacobs died at home on July 5, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.[1]

After learning of Jacobs' death, Jacobs' former girlfriend Lela Michaels attempted to preserve his archives yet failed to do so since the two were never married.[28] Lela Michaels called off her efforts and died from cancer in Lake County, California on July 28, 2016, twenty-four days after Jacobs' passing.[28]


  1. ^ a b "Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner - Coroner - Case Detail". Retrieved 2016-08-18. 
  2. ^ Crew, Adrienne. "LAist Interview: Rodger Jacobs". LAist. Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  3. ^ Jacobs, Rodger. "PopMatters". PopMatters. Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  4. ^ Goldberg, Michelle. "The Matt Drudge of porn". Salon. Retrieved November 28, 2010. 
  5. ^ Richard, Emmanuelle. "The Perils of Covering Porn". Online Journalism Review. Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Stories: Rodger Jacobs". Dead Drunk Dublin. Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  7. ^ a b c Pytak, Stephen J. (March 15, 2015). "Coal mining heritage takes spotlight in upcoming play". Republican & Herald. 
  8. ^ Jacobs, Rodger. "Go Irish: The Purgatory Diaries of Jason Miller" (PDF). Retrieved November 21, 2010. 
  9. ^ Shaw, Jack (2011). "GO IRISH at SCTC: A Stirring Examination of Celebrity Madness". Stage Magazine. Retrieved March 11, 2011. 
  10. ^ Jacobs, Rodger. "The Ragged Promised Land". Carvers Dog. Retrieved November 21, 2010. 
  11. ^ Baum, Henry. "Mr. Bukowski's Wild Ride by Rodger Jacobs". Self-Publishing Review. 
  12. ^ Jacobs, Rodger. "I Am Frightened". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  13. ^ Jacobs, Rodger. "Hostile Toward Homelessness". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  14. ^ Jacobs, Rodger. "Homelessness and the indignity of hurtful speech". Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved December 5, 2010. 
  15. ^ Coolican, J. Patrick. "Rodger Jacobs, Writer, Stuck in Vegas And Near Homeless, Gets Some Help – From L.A.". LA Weekly. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  16. ^ Fremon, Celeste. "The New Homeless: Rodger Jacobs and a Tale of Two Cities". Witness LA. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  17. ^ Sicha, Choire. "Why Is American Selfishness So Widespread Now?". The Awl. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  18. ^ Berube, Nicolas. "À deux doigts de la rue". La Presse. Retrieved December 1, 2010. 
  19. ^ The New Homeless: Part One. Las Vegas Sun. YouTube. August 29, 2010. 
  20. ^ "The New Homeless: Part 2". Las Vegas Sun. YouTube. October 1, 2010. 
  21. ^ The New Homeless: Part 3. Las Vegas Sun. YouTube. December 10, 2010. 
  22. ^ "The Furthest Palm". Silver Birch Press. 2012. 
  23. ^ Mailander, Joseph (December 28, 2012). "The Most Exemplary LA Book of 2012". 
  24. ^ Jacobs, Rodger (January 21, 2013). "Did Kafka invent noir?". Salon. 
  25. ^ "Wadd: The Life & Times of John C. Holmes". The New York Times. Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  26. ^ Guthmann, Edward; Morris, Wesley (April 13, 2001). "Wadd: The Life & Times of John C. Holmes". Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  27. ^ Taubin, Amy. "Mopey Dicks and Boogie Nights". The Village Voice. Retrieved November 20, 2010. 
  28. ^ a b Mailander, Joseph F. (November 21, 2016). "Barely legit: Rodger Jacobs, 1959-2016". Minor Literatures. 

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