Reviving a Classic: Writing Waves and Beaches 3rd Edition with Kim McCoy

April 14, 2022

The challenges and triumphs of bringing back a true classic

Since 1964, some edition of Waves and Beaches has been a go-to introduction to oceanic and coastal processes.  The latest edition, co-authored by Willard Bascom and Kim McCoy, provides a 21st century perspective and update to the earlier material. Kim also complements some of Willard’s stories with a few of his own experiences as a sailor, diver and observer. On this episode of Shorewords! Join host Lesley Ewing in conversation with Kim McCoy as he talks about his collaborations with Willard Bascom, his work on the third edition of Waves and Beaches following Bascom’s death in 2000, decisions to expand the book to cover inland watersheds, and inclusion of more international examples.

Show Transcription
This transcription was generated by a computer. Please excuse any errors.
Lesley Ewing

Hello. I’m Lesley Ewing, host of Shorewords!. This podcast combines two of my favorite things – the ocean and books. I learned to swim before I could walk and looked forward each summer to my family’s vacation at Ocean City, Maryland. As a student I was interested in science and engineering and became an environmental engineer before learning that there was something called coastal engineering. Both my 1 st and 2 nd mid-life crises resulted in me going back to school – first for a Masters of Engineering at UC Berkeley and later for a Ph.D. from the University of Southern California. The first crisis also moved me from DC to the SF Bay. The second crisis reminded me how much I liked to read. Getting a Ph.D. while working a 40+-hour/week job meant that my only reading was work reports, text books and technical articles. They were all important and interesting books, but as soon as school ended, I replaced my academic text books with broader literature and realized that the coast was often a character in the fiction and non-fiction that I read. I am still fascinated by every visit to the ocean and remain in awe of what others write about the coast.