Write Hard, Die Free: Dispatches from the Battlefields & Barrooms of the Great Alaska Newspaper War

 

Howard Weaver advanced from foot soldier to field marshal in the Alaska Newspaper War, but never left the fight. He spent time with small-town hoodlums and big-time politicians, crossed swords with Big Oil and Big Labor, edited the Anchorage Daily News to the most unlikely David and Goliath upset in American journalism and helped win two Pulitzer Prizes. Weaver cared passionately and fought fiercely in every political struggle of his era, from oil development to Native sovereignty, from park land designations to environmental activism. Weaver has pulled no punches in this account of a fierce, take-no-prisoners battle.

 


 

“Aa wonderful storyteller with amazing tales to tell of fighting for the heart and soul of Alaska and of journalism. This is the last great newspaper book.” ~Jeff Jarvis, professor, author and journalism futurist

“There was a time when the newspaper business was actually fun, as Weaver reminds us in this in this riveting book of tales from the wild frontier of American journalism.” ~Dave Barry, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist, best-selling author

“Come behind the barricades of the battle for the soul of America’s last frontier. Throw away your McGinniss, Bodett, and especially Palin. This is the book about Alaska you need.” ~Tom Bodett, author, humorist and Alaska ex-pat

“This reads like an X-ray of someone with an oversized heart. It’s about the battle between good and evil, but the most stunning portrait is really about the author.” ~John Larson, NBC and PBS correspondent, longtime Alaska newsman

 

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INSPIRED BY ALASKA

The frontier politics of Alaska have always lured Weaver.

“Alaska politics always comes down to debate over resource development—mainly about oil,” Weaver writes. “The adversaries in the argument in those days were evenly matched, and the body politic was a hormonal adolescent, undergoing great changes and still coming to grips with what it wanted to be. The decade in which Bob Dylan sang ‘there was music in the cafes at night and revolution in the air,’ was a heady, optimistic time to come of age in Alaska.”

Author Howard Weaver

Howard Weaver

The Confessional

We asked & our authors answered…


Howard has been known to: sing loudly in public.

He’ll never get caught: giving up on what he believes in.

A favorite/line expression and where it’s from: “The future has already arrived. It’s just not evenly distributed yet.” –William Gibson, author of <em>Neuromancer</em> and other near-future novels.

Alaskans he most admires: Ernest Gruening, Jay Hammond, Kay Fanning

Favorite Alaska places: Kachemak Bay, his old cabin in Sutton, Loussac Library in Anchorage

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Book & Author

Author Howard Weaver

Weaver cared passionately and fought fiercely in every political struggle of his era, from oil development to Native sovereignty, from park land designations to environmental activism. The Anchorage Daily News pulled no punches in telling Alaska’s story, and Weaver has pulled none in this account of a fierce, take-no-prisoners battle to the death between his newspaper and the Anchorage Times.

Described by several reviewers as “the story of the fight for Alaska’s soul,” this book is rooted in Alaska and inspired by love of Alaska. Anchorage born Howard Weaver would lead his newspaper to two Pulitzer prizes and victory over the rival Anchorage Times, but his primary objective was bringing Alaskans the information they needed to decide the future of the state. This is the authoritative history of that struggle.

Sneaky Peek

Alaska politics always comes down to debate over resource development—mainly about oil. The adversaries in the argument in those days were evenly matched and the body politic was a hormonal adolescent, undergoing great changes and still coming to grips with what it wanted to be. The decade in which Bob Dylan sang “there was music in the cafes at night and revolution in the air,” was a heady, optimistic time to come of age in Alaska.

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