About John May

John May is an investigative journalist, book producer, historian and archivist who, over the last 40 years, has written extensively on developments in the fields of the environment, science, and popular culture.

He worked for all the key British underground papers in the early 1970s and was Dick Tracy, investigative journalist for the New Musical Express from 1975-1982.

He has written, co-authored and produced 18 books including the cult encyclopaedia ‘An Index of Possibilities', ‘Worlds Within Worlds’, the first popular showcase of scientific imagery, ‘The Greenpeace Story’, the organisation’s official history, and ‘Handmade Houses’, a guide to the world of vernacular architecture.

His freelance journalism has appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian/Observer, The Telegraph, The Sunday Times and numerous magazines including The Face, Wired and Co-Evolution Quarterly.

He has interviewed more than 150 important figures in many fields including William Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, George Lucas and Steven Spielberg, Al Gore and James Lovelock.

His blog The Generalist, based in part on his extensive personal Archive of all forms of media documentation dating back to the 1960s, has gained a substantial global audience in the last seven years.

He is a published poet, a semi-professional musician and songwriter, a part-time painter and a dedicated photographer.


Esther O'Toole said...

Hello Generalist - great stuff thanks for posting, really enjoying reading your posts about the early 70s, especially the BIT guides.

Can you are any readers help me out with some original content via email/a photocopy/or a copy of the BIT overland to India circa 1970?
I imagine most original copies have disintegrated long ago covered in Moroccan tea stains and in-ground hash. No funds for my current research so all help very much appreciated!

Contact me via

Nick Spurrier said...

Can anyone help with a copy of the BIT guide overland through. I can pay for any costs involved in copying it.

Unknown said...

Hi, John. Remember me from Lewes greenpeace days. get in touch: sidneyholt@mac.com. I'm living in the medaeval village of pacing in Umbria, approaching 90th birthday.Leslie Busby just sent me stuff about your current activity. Did you ever finish the videos about Arthur Clarke?
I follow whaling still but am actually working on getting sea fishing to be more benign. My book on the history of Saving whales will be published in a few montha. I'll get a copy to you; are you still in Lewes?
Best wishes for 2016 Sidney Holt.

Dom said...

Hi John,

I'm intrigued by an obit you wrote for Robert Lamb, who was writing A Hungry Ghost, a biography of the Russian-born Dr Barbara Moore. Do you ever know what happened to the book or do you have contacts for his estate? Regards, Dom