Endangered Species: Writers Talk about Their Craft, Their Visions, Their Lives

Endangered Species: Writers Talk about Their Craft, Their Visions, Their Lives

by Lawrence Grobel
     
 


Writing and the writer's life as seen by twelve prominent-and decidedly opinionated-practitioners of the artSee more details below

Overview


Writing and the writer's life as seen by twelve prominent-and decidedly opinionated-practitioners of the art

Editorial Reviews

KLIATT
In his interview with Alex Haley, Lawrence Grobel asks: "Wouldn't you say that to be a good interviewer you must exhibit a chameleon-like personality, be fully prepared, and have self-confidence?" Haley, who had written a number of widely admired interviews for Playboy, agreed that those three qualities "would be things you really have to be." Lawrence Grobel might very well be describing himself as he exhibits these qualities in the 12 interviews that comprise Endangered Species. Grobel, who has been writing interviews for 30 years, presents in full his conversations with the following writers: Saul Bellow, Ray Bradbury, J. P. Donleavy, James Ellroy, Allen Ginsberg, Andrew Greeley, Alex Haley, Joseph Heller, Elmore Leonard, Norman Mailer, Joyce Carol Oates, and Neil Simon. Some of the interviews were conducted during a brief lunch meeting; others took several days. (This accounts for the uneven length of the chapters.) Each interview is preceded by an essay, again of uneven length, in which Grobel presents some background on the subject of the interview and the circumstances of the interview itself. The title of Grobel's work comes from a remark made by Norman Mailer about the status of writers. Mailer suggested that writers today are less respected and less important than Hemingway and Faulkner were in their time. Saul Bellow expressed similar pessimism when he commented, "the number of readers is diminishing. Family life today is not creating more readers." Reacting to these concerns, Grobel expresses in his Preface his hope that "the collected wisdom of these writers can serve as a beacon to shine light even in the darkest places." The subtitle, "Writers Talk About TheirCraft, Their Visions, Their Lives," suggests some balance among these three interests. However, there seems to be less emphasis on the craft and more focus on the visions and the lives. Grobel's questions do cover a wide range of interests. Some of the topics often discussed include: the influences that shaped that writer, a writer's opinion of other writers, a writer's response to criticism, a writer's view of God, politics, sex, and death. Due to the frank nature of these discussions, this book would be more helpful to teachers looking for supplementary material on a particular author rather than the students themselves. KLIATT Codes: A�Recommended for advanced students and adults. 2001, Perseus, Da Capo, 416p. index., Pucci

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780306810046
Publisher:
Da Capo Press
Publication date:
06/01/2001
Pages:
432
Product dimensions:
6.02(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.13(d)

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >