about

Who am I, and what have I done?

I’ve written two books: Lesser Beasts: A Snout-to-Tail History of the Humble Pig (Basic Books, 2015) and Edison & the Electric Chair (Walker & Co., 2003). I’ve contributed to the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, Atlas Obscura, Los Angeles Review of Books, and Gravy. I spent an unhealthy number of years in school (B.A., University of Virginia; Ph.D., Cornell). I’ve worked at burger joints, bookstores, coffee shops, and daily newspapers. I now spend many of my working hours writing and editing technical reports about science, medicine, agriculture, and international development. I grew up in St. Louis and now live in Asheville, North Carolina, a small city with nice hiking trails and an affordable housing problem.

You can e-mail me by clicking here.
You can also find me on Twitter: @mark_essig

Here I am with the dear departed Gucci, my favorite boar at the Warren Wilson College farm:

photo by John Fletcher