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Books: Non-Fiction

Leon Patterson, A California Story

Fighting poverty and a terminal illness, Leon Patterson rose to the level of a world-class athlete. It's not just a biography... it's quite a story!

In Thought and Acton: The Enigmatic Life of S. I. Hayakawa

Who S. I. Hayakawa was depends on your perspective. This intimate and detailed biography draws on interviews with friends and family members, as well as Hayakawa's own papers and journals, to bring this controversial and fascinating figure to life.

Workin' Man Blues: Country Music in California

Hollywood singing cowboys, Bakersfield honky-tonks, rodeos, and hillbilly radio shows, California has been fertile ground for country music since the 1920s.

The Great Central Valley: California's Heartland

A celebration of the tenacious people of the Great Central Valley, where hard work and ingenuity are the means to both survival and success. Stunning photographs reveal the beauty of this immense region as well as the delicate relationship between the land and the people who work it.

Out of the Slush Pile and Into Print

Part of a series entitled 'Into Print: Guides to the Writing Life,' this small volume features essays by Gerald Haslam and Perry Glasser on submitting written works to publishers.

Western Writers Series #102: Lawrence Clark Powell

Boise State University Western Writers' Series, 1991; ISBN: 0-88430-101-X
A 52-page survey of the life and career of one of the West's preeminent men of letters.

Coming of Age in California

Personal essays touching on everything from dogs to cancer. Follow fifth-generation Californian Gerald Haslam as he experienced both the uniqueness of place and the universals of family, friends, love, and aging.

The Other California: The Great Central Valley in Life and Letters

Don't dismiss the Central Valley as boring and flat! From reminiscences of childhood and adolescence to a portrait of Mexican-Americans and their position in the Valley’s society, Gerald Haslam argues that it is California’s heartland and economic hub.

Voices of a Place: Social and Literary Essays from the Other California

What is life like in the 'Other California,' the regions of the Golden State where toil -- not tennis -- characterizes each day? This collection of essays explores blue-collar existence in out-of-the-way places and suggests unique textures in Californians' lives, as well as their savor and sorrow.

Western Writers Series #20: Jack Schaefer

Boise State University Western Writers' Series, 1975; ISBN: 0-88430-019-6.
A 46-page survey of the life and career of one of the West's preeminent men of letters.

The Language of the Oil Fields: Examination of an Industrial Argot

A very hard to find early book, which examines the specialized language that developed among oil field workers in California.

William Eastlake

#36 in the Steck-Vaughn 'Southwest Writers Series'.

Books: Fiction

Grace Period

Marty Martinez thinks his life can't get any worse... when it does. 'Grace Period' is a profound, sometimes hilarious novel about living with serious illness; and finding that at the precarious edge of life there is not only pain and loss, but hope, a chance at redemption, love, and even happiness.

Haslam's Valley

Gerald Haslam picks up where Mark Twain left off in this career-spanning collection of stories and essays brimming with life—only here is Kern County instead of Calaveras, Oildale instead of Nevada City, a great alligator hunt instead of a celebrated jumping frog.

Straight White Male

'Straight White Male' is a moving and powerful account of middle age and the heart-wrenching complexities of family life.

Manuel and the Madman

Half-Anglo and half-Chicano, Manuel Ryan struggles with discrimination from both sides of his heritage while trying to handle junior high and girls. Is it any wonder he needs a madman to help make sense of it all?
A humorous novel about and for teens.

The Great Tejon Club Jubilee

In the tradition of Mark Twain and Will Rogers, Gerald Haslam's redoubtable Tejon-Club Gang returns the tall-tale and the bumpkin-humor traditions to their proper places in American letters ... where ever that is! The gang manages to poke holes in social trends and elitist assumptions -- and in their own prejudices -- while bumbling from one beer-fueled misadventure to the next.

Condor Dreams and Other Fictions

Haslam explores the rural areas and small towns of his native region — California's Great Central Valley — in this collection of twenty-five short stories. The author’s triumph in these stories is that, by making us care about his characters and their habitats, he allows us to care more about ourselves and our land.

Illustrated Editions: The Horned Toad

Adapted and illustrated by Garth Haslam.

Thwack! Pow! Productions, Box 984, Penngrove, CA 94951, 1994.
Gerry's most anthologized short story presented in comic-book form for beginning readers.

That Constant Coyote: California Stories

These stories tell us what life is like in the regions of California and the West where drudgery characterizes each day, where 'menudo para desayuno' or biscuits and gravy replace champagne brunch... of the quintessential California of working people who struggle to make a living.

The Man Who Cultivated Fire and Other Stories

In these stories, Haslam portrays rural people struggling to make something of themselves and to live with dignity in the raw American West. Most of these tales are set in what critics have called "the other California" -- poor, tough, crafty, and often desperate.

Snapshots: Glimpses of the Other California

Everyone knows California, bleached blonde and surfer country. In fact, what most people "know" is the media image of a narrow coastal strip that runs roughly from San Diego to Marin County. However, the Golden State is not a single, homogenous region. Instead, it is a group of diverse places, other places, gathered within arbitrary boundaries under a single name.

Hawk Flights: Visions of the West

Haslam's writing is regional without being parochial. 'He sings the song of the West, but it is not a traditional ballad. Instead it is the howl of the wind fraying the nerves of the complacent, the slap that awakens the dreamer.

The Wages of Sin: Collected Stories

Duck Down Press/Windriver Books.


In the blistering heat of a San Joaquin Valley summer, Junior Ward learns a lesson that is hardly new or unique, but one that at least some members of every generation must discover afresh in endless patterns and variations: you can’t go home again.

Okies: Selected Stories

Those who fled to California from the Oklahoma dust bowl of the 1930’s as children -- and their children who were born in California, as well -- are the "Okies". Poor, culturally diverse, and discriminated against, these people struggle against the fearful elite, against one another, and with their own capacities for love and hate.

Books: Anthology

Many Californias: Literature from the Golden State

As editor Haslam divides the state into five regions, selecting prose and poetry from each that reflects their history, terrain, and culture. Many Califonias features sixty-seven authors ranging from Jack London to Maxine Hong Kingston, making it the most diverse general-interest anthology available.

Jack London's Golden State: Selected California Writing

For nearly a century, Jack London has been an international icon, more widely read and translated than any other American author. First and foremost, however, he has always been a Californian, the first major writer to use the Golden State as his base.

Where Coyotes Howl and Wind Blows Free: Growing Up in the West

In this collection of coming-of-age stories, the editors carefully balance gender and ethnicity to provide readers with the first anthology to truly reflect the heterogeneity of the West.

California Heartland: Writing from the Great Central Valley

Co-written with James D. Houston.
Capra Press.

Afro-American Oral Literature

Published as part of the "Harper studies in language and literature" series.

Western Writing: Famous Western Authors Explain Their Craft

A collection of essays by 'Western' authors that aims to both give a history of western literature as well as to help define what the "West" actually is, culturally speaking.

Forgotten Pages of American Literature

"It is always amazing to realize how diverse and eclectic a nation the United States is."
A 1970 collection of works by authors from America's ethnic "minority groups," which give glimpses into different lives and cultures than mainstream literature usually presented at the time.


The Miyazaki Family: Missing in Action

Gerald Haslam was a script consultant on the 22-minute film "The Miyazaki Family: Missing in Action" produced and directed by Michael Litle for Abitare Film Group, Inc., 1995.
The film was based on Haslam's short story "Missing in Action," first published in ???, and the final production was the winner of the 1995 Golden Eagle Award from CINE.


Gerald Haslam was the co-script writer of the 22-minute movie Rider, produced by Randy Lippert and directed by Jim Weiner for Spotswood Productions, 1992. The film was based on Haslam's short story "Rider."