NOW DIG THIS; The Unspeakable Writings of Terry Southern; 1950-1995, Grove Atlantic Press, 2001

Now Dig This is the first anthology of Terry Southern's work since the classic RED DIRT MARIJUANA and Other Tastes (1967). This handsome hardcover book contains previously uncollected and unpublished stories, essays, letters, memoirs, and interviews. A must for anyone interested in the intersection (crash-collision, you might say) of fiction, cinema and pop culture! Edited by Nile Southern and Josh Alan Friedman.

Praise for NOW DIG THIS:

"A fantabulous ride." — LA Weekly

"as this collection ... proves, he was still turning out good stuff right up until the bitter-sweet end. " — Financial Times

"[Now Dig This] reveals a writer defined by his generosity, by the pursuit of fun and by an insatiable hunger...this is porous writing...”
— The New York Times

Outstanding, volatile...entertaining”
— Publishers Weekly

“Existential, quintessential Terry, disgraceful and delightful.”
— Peter Matheissen

"Terry Southern was the class clown of the quality-hip scene, larger, weirder, and a lot funnier than life."
Jules Feiffer

“A tidy collection... ” — Kirkus

"Offering an industrial-strength dose of Southern's own special brand of high weirdness, "Now Dig This" contains some of the most profound, and downright silliest, things the man ever came up with. It is, in short, the "next book" Southern fans have been waiting for all these years." —

Acclaimed novelist, Beat godfather, prolific screenwriter, and one of the founders of New Journalism, as well as the only guy to wear shades on the Sgt. Peter’s album cover, Terry Southern was an audacious, outrageous American original. NOW DIG THIS, the first Southern anthology since Red Dirt Marijuana and Other Tastes emerged over 30 years ago, is a wild, uncensored, and hugely entertaining collection that spans the gamut of his stellar career.

From an interview with Henry Green during the salad days of The Paris Review, to his account of life neck-high in girls and cocaine aboard the Rolling Stones’ tour jet, Now Dig This is a journey through Terry Southern’s America, spanning the 1940s Texas, the buttoned-down 1950s through the sexual revolution, the cinema revolution, the ex-pat scene, drugs, rock'n'roll, and the rise and fall of ‘Quality Lit-ville’.

Gathered from Southern’s archives are interviews, early short stories, accounts of his experiences as the Rolling Stones' court reporter, his hilarious unpublished expose on the Cuban invasion, outrageous short narratives such as the keystone-cops satire on capital punishment; "Wormball Man", as well as intimate, at times scandalous portraits of William Burroughs, Abbie Hoffman, Staley Kubrick, Maurice Girodias, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., Alex Trocci, and the early Stones of Swinging London. Also included is what the New York Observer described as the ‘coldest story ever written,’ and Southern's Esquire article about the 1968 National Democratic Convention, where he was a pivotal figure in the riots and a key witness in the Conspriacy Trial of the Chicago Seven.

Terry’s literary body of work embodies some of the most extreme--and extremely funny writing in contemporary American letters. NOW DIG THIS is a vivid testament from an American literary lion, and a hilarious, engrossing, and enlightening statement on life in America today.

Reviews of
Now Dig This


Press and radio coverage:


The New York Times Book Review; "The Hippest Guy on the Planet" (6/17/01)
NYPress (6/7/01)


Harper's cover story by George Plimpton (August, 2001)
Bookforum "Where Have all the Ballsy Writers Gone?" (Summer, 2001)

Also: Kirkus

WEB: "The High Life and High Times of Terry Southern"


Ain't it (with Lee Hill, Nile Southern, Josh Alan Friedman) (5/28/01)


KGNU; Boulder, CO; 24 mins; "Morning Magazine" June 18th, 2001
(interview by Sam Fuqua)
KALW; Berkeley, CA; 1 hr; TBA; (interview by Alan Farley)
KCRW; Los Angeles; CA; 30 mins; TBA; "Politics of Culture"
(interview by Michael Simmons)



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About the Editors:

Nile Southern is a writer and filmmaker living in Boulder, Colorado. He is the Executor of The Terry Southern Literary Trust, and Archivist for the Literary Papers of Terry Southern.

"The Anarchivists of Eco-Dub: A Wireless Report," by Nile Southern, is available online at Alt-X's website.

Texas-based blues guitarist Josh Alan Friedman is the author of Tales of Times Square and Warts and All. His most recent CD is Blacks 'n' Jews.