Author, Journalist, Historian
Raised in Southeast Texas, Lamont Wood always felt like an outsider, as he picked up his parents’ speech patterns rather than the local Cajun-influenced accent. (His father, a former Marine, was from Colorado, while his mother, although Anglo, was born on the Crow Indian Reservation in Montana.) Developing a passion for writing early in life, he left Nederland High School to get a journalism degree from the University of Texas at Austin. He started as a reporter at the Port Arthur News, covering periodic industrial and maritime disasters. He later moved inland to the (now defunct) San Antonio Light, where things were comparatively sedate in keeping with the city’s semi-colonial atmosphere (except for odd moments such as when he was pinned down in a parade crowd by a sniper, watching bleeding people crawl towards him.) He got into personal computers as a hobby, building one from a kit (and acquiring a printer by rebuilding an old wire service machine) and so got hired as a PR person at the bleeding edge (and now defunct) computer firm Datapoint Corp. Wood met numerous editors and writers in the computer field and figured he could do that too, and went freelance in 1982. He discovered that what matters is not what you know but who you know, but after attending trade shows, where he would hang out in the press room and pass out business cards, it became like a full-time job. He semi-retired recently after nearly four decades, selling more than 625 magazine articles to publications ranging from Scientific American to trade journals in Hong Kong, countless online projects, and more than a dozen books. Along the way he and his wife Dr. Louise O’Donnell, a pediatric neuropsychologist and now a retired medical school professor, adopted and raised twin boys.