About Us

Root Simple is Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen, authors of The Urban Homestead (Expanded and Revised Edition): Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City (2008) and Making It: Radical Home Ec for a Post-Consumer World (2011)

They live in the heart of Los Angeles, in a little bungalow set on a 1/12 acre lot where almost all of their land is devoted to growing edible or otherwise useful plants and trees. Their obsessions include bees, bikes, beer, chickens, healthy cities, healing herbs, simple living and good food. In short, everything DIY!

Erik’s Bio:
Erik Knutzen is the co-author, with his wife Kelly Coyne, of The Urban Homestead and Making It: Radical Home Economics for a Post-Consumer World. He also writes for magazines including Make, Urban Farm and Yes. He has become increasingly interested in the concept of urban sustainability since moving to Los Angeles in 1998. Since that time, he has converted his 1920 hilltop bungalow into a mini-farm, and along the way has explored and written about the traditional home arts of baking, pickling, bicycling and brewing. He is the co-founder, with Mark Stambler and Teresa Sitz, of the Los Angeles Bread Bakers.

Publicity Photo Set

Speaking Fees
Our speaking fee is $150 for a basic talk and Q & A session, lasting between one and two hours. The fee is the same whether one or both of us speaks. Fees for longer workshops and the like will have to be negotiated on a per case basis. We will consider waiving our speaking fees for libraries and schools and small, informal groups.

We will gladly travel up to 15 miles from our home in central Los Angeles to any speaking engagement.

For distances over 15 miles but less than one day of travel, we will travel by train (Amtrak, Metrolink, subway or combination thereof) and this travel expense will be added to our usual speaker fee. In addition, we will require transport to and from the station to the speaking site. If the venue is more than one days travel, we request a sleeper car.

Guest Posts:
We occassionally invite our friends to guest post for us. You may find writing here from Lora Hall (aka Homegrown Neighbor), Nancy Klehm and our friends from Ramshackle Solid:  Julia Posey and Eric Thomason.

Johnny Sanphillippo shot this nice video tour of our house for faircompanies.com.

Blog design by Roman Jaster. Charming header drawings by Caroline Clerc.