The Writer's Art Explored in New Collection by Book Expert Nicholas Basbanes

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New book by Nicholas Basbanes features never-before published extended interviews with major authors of the late 20th-century, including A. S. Byatt, Joseph Heller, Edna O’Brien, Kurt Vonnegut, Alfred Kazin, and Jimmy Breslin

About the Author by Nicholas Basbanes

the leading authority on books about books.

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Writer Nicholas A. Basbanes's well-received collection, Editions and Impressions, now has a companion volume, About the Author: Inside the Creative Process (Fine Books Press, cloth, $27.95). Together, the volumes represent the best of Basbanes's book journalism.

The final quarter of the last century was a period of extraordinary fervor in American letters—a time when post-World War II authors reached their peak and well before the Internet had eroded book publishing and changed everything. Basbanes, acclaimed author of A Gentle Madness, enjoyed the rare opportunity as a literary editor of the Worcester, Massachusetts Telegram & Gazette to interview literally hundreds of authors passing through Boston on publicity tours. Because of his extensive knowledge of books and authors, two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and biographer David McCullough called Basbanes “the leading authority on books about books.”

About the Author: Inside the Creative Process collects more than forty of Basbanes’s interviews and essays that grew from this unique period of publishing. The list includes best-selling novelists, biographers, poets, historians, and others who were regularly among the best-selling authors. In addition, About the Author publishes for the first time the full interviews with important writers such as novelists A. S. Byatt, Joseph Heller, Edna O’Brien, and Kurt Vonnegut; the critic Alfred Kazin a few months before he died; and columnist Jimmy Breslin just after he had suffered an aneurysm—but who would continue to write for fifteen more years.

Perhaps no one has been more suited to this kind of reporting than Nicholas Basbanes. Using the skills of an experienced interviewer and the considered analysis of an impartial critic, Basbanes pioneered a new kind of journalism for his weekly column. These pieces collected together paint a remarkable picture of authors at the heights of their creativity.

With the loss of so many of these writers and the imposing behemoth called the Internet, this sort of collection may never again be culled from the morning papers. As alive and refreshing as the day they were published, the pieces in About the Author explore the creative process that was—and is—the foundation of books and publishing.

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Media Contact: Victor Gulotta
Gulotta Communications, Inc.

About the Author

Nicholas A. Basbanes was literary editor of the Worcester, Massachusetts Telegram & Gazette from 1978 to 1991. His first book, A Gentle Madness: Bibliophiles, Bibliomanes, and the Eternal Passion for Books (Henry Holt), now in its sixteenth printing, was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award in nonfiction for 1995 and was named a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. He has subsequently published six other books and innumerable columns centered on the world of books. Mr. Basbanes was awarded a National Endowment of the Humanities fellowship for an upcoming book on the history of paper and papermaking to be published by Alfred A. Knopf in 2010. He and his wife, Constance, reside in North Grafton, Massachusetts.

About the Author: Inside the Creative Process
By Nicholas A. Basbanes

ISBN 978-0-9799491-3-5 Cloth, $27.95, 246 pp.
Published by Fine Books Press, 4905 Pine Cone Drive, #2, Durham, North Carolina 27707


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Victor Gulotta
Gulotta Communications, Inc.
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