World’s Strangest

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A Town of Storybook Houses and How They Came to Be

In 1924, a man named Hugh Comstock took a little trip to Carmel-by-the-Sea, California to see his sister and her husband. The town was becoming well known as a haven for artists and other creative types, so it’s not surprising that he met a doll maker named Mayotta Browne during his stay there. Miss Browne [...]

The Early (Not-So-Literary) Jobs of 10 Great Authors

It’s not unusual for professors and journalists to end up as influential writers—just look at Toni Morrison, Ezra Pound, and John Updike. But sometimes our wordslinging heroes take a longer, less direct route to greatness. Oftentimes, those experiences will end up in the author’s work. Other times, it’s just an odd footnote. Here are ten [...]

The Call of The London

Today would be Jack London’s 143th birthday. The man was not only one of the most popular writers at the turn of the last century, he was also one of the first writers to see his novels be turned into a movie. In fact, his novel, The Sea Wolf, was adapted into the first full-length [...]

Strange Geographies: A Utopian Ghost Town in the California Desert

Llano del Rio is one of the most distinctive ghost towns in the United States. Like many Utopian communities, it lasted only a short time — a few hopeful, productive years — before being abandoned. Unlike most, however, it was built to last — its granite foundations sourced from nearby mountain ranges — and, still [...]