Ron McLarty was enjoying his life as a character actor (Sex and the City and The Practice are on his resume) and writing just for fun, when Stephen King made him famous. In his Entertainment Weekly column, King praised McLarty's The Memory of Running -- then only available as an audiobook -- as "The Best Book You Can't Read."
Read the interview
Exclusive: Hear our audio interview with McLarty (13:29)
New York, New York
Date of Birth:
April 14, 1947
Place of Birth:
Providence, Rhode Island
Rhode Island College
Ron McLarty's official web site
|McLarty's Breakout Book|
|The Memory of Running|
Meet Smithson "Smithy" Ide: an overweight, friendless, chain-smoking, 43-year-old drunk who works as a quality control inspector at a toy factory in Rhode Island. By all accounts, especially Smithy's own, he's a loser. After a family tragedy, he mounts his old Raleigh bicycle and pedals across America on a journey no reader will soon forget.
Read an excerpt
|The Story Behind the Story|
|In an interview with his publisher, McLarty talked about how The Memory of Running came to be: "My parents had a car accident while visiting me at a vacation spot in Maine," he explains. "I stayed at a motel between my mother's trauma center and my father's neurological hospital. Between visits, I wrote The Memory of Running as a play. After their deaths, I expanded it into novel form. Like in all of my work, I try to explain the world and its affect on me. I have always felt that writing is a deeply personal thing and not a road to wealth and happiness."|
|Favorite Writers and Reads|
|War and Peace|
Leo Tolstoy, Ann Dunnigan (trans.)
"My late friend the great actor Roger Bowen and I had a two-man book club and we’d discuss our selections at acting calls. This was a book I thought I’d hate but couldn’t put down," McLarty said of Tolstoy's classic in our exclusive interview. "It’s got love, passion, bravery… everything."
McLarty told us that Handling Sin by Michael Malone is another favorite. "Malone’s southern comedy saga made me jealous of his skill," he admits. Read on to learn more about McLarty's favorite writers and reads, including: