Entrepreneur and bestselling author Rob Reid talks about curiosity and his many interests including science fiction, tech, and Middle Eastern history. He shares his writing process and his thoughts about the future, his books, and his podcast, After On.
Rob Reid is an author of speculative fiction based in New York City. His new novel, After On, concerns a diabolical social network (Phluttr) with the means and (perhaps?) the inclination to take full control of human society. His prior novel, Year Zero, was a New York Times bestseller, and depicts a vast alien civilization whose obsession with American pop music bankrupts the entire universe.
A former venture capitalist, Rob was the founder, CEO, and later Chairman of Listen.com, which created and developed Rhapsody – the first online music service to secure full-catalog licenses from all of the major labels. Rhapsody created the unlimited streaming model later adopted by Spotify, Apple, and many others.
Some Questions We Ask:
- When he hears the word “successful,” what’s the first thing that comes to mind?
- To what would he attribute his insatiable interest and curiosity in different things and people?
- Has he faced financial pressure in pursuing his interests?
- Looking back to when he started Listen.com and Rhapsody, what does he think is his role, from the music subscription service perspective?
- What’s his writing process and how does he synthesize his research and weave it into a story that’s palatable and something that’s going to grab a reader?
- What is he most proud of?
What You’ll Learn In This Episode:
- How being an orphan shaped his worldview
That’s one great thing about being adopted, you know that your addition to that family was a highly intentional act that took years of work.
If you grew up with a couple of older siblings, couple of parents, and you have this deeply seated notion that we’re all cut from the same cloth, you might perceive ceilings and floors in your abilities.
- His thoughts on Spotify, consumers, and the music streaming business model
- Why and how he started his new book, After On
- His plans for his podcast, After On
After On: A Novel of Silicon Valley