A Writer Grows in Brooklyn "“ part 2

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Yesterday, you were shocked to learn how many amazing writers once called Brooklyn 'home.' (You were shocked, weren't you?) Today, we'll take a closer look at some of those writers and learn some odd facts about them.

For instance, most people say Truman Capote formally established the non-fiction novel in 1965 with In Cold Blood. Cold truth is, Operación Masacre by Argentine author and journalist Rodolfo Walsh bests Capote's by nearly 10 years!

Then there's this: Most people know that the Statue of Liberty was a gift from France. But are you aware that American dollars were needed to build the pedestal for the great lady to sit on? To raise funds, an exhibition and auction were set up and many writers donated their works. Walt Whitman was one of the generous artists who helped raise funds (as was Mark Twain and John Burroughs.)

If you've ever wondered why so many Philip Roth novels are set in and around Newark, NJ, that's because the author was born and raised there. (Hey, they say 'write what you know!' Right?)

Another non-fiction novelist, Norman Mailer won the Pulitzer twice. But did you know that he also appeared in an episode of Gilmore Girls entitled "Norman Mailer, I'm Pregnant!"?

If you ever wondered how Paul Bowles got so much amazing French, north-African detail into The Sheltering Sky, you might be interested to know thathe was living in Tangier, Morocco, when he wrote the novel. In fact, despite that he once lived in Brooklyn, Bowles spent most of his life abroad. He moved to Morocco in 1947 and lived there until he died in 1999.

Though Bernard Malamud is best known for The Natural, which was adapted into a 1984 film starring Robert Redford, he won the Pulitzer in 1967 for The Fixer, a story inspired by the real-life of Menahem Mendel Beilis, an unjustly imprisoned Jew in Tsarist Russia.

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December 17, 2009 - 11:12am
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