Biographer Diane Wood Middlebrook. She's written a controversial new book about the troubled writer Anne Sexton. The controversy surrounds Middlebrook's source material: she had access to transcripts of Sexton's psychiatric sessions with the approval of Sexton's daughter and psychiatrist. Sexton killed herself in 1974. She began writing poetry in 1956 following a suicidal breakdown and after her therapist suggested she try writing poetry. ("Anne Sexton: A Biography," published by Houghton Mifflin).
Journalist and biographer Nick Tosches. His new biography is "Dino: Living High in the Dirty Business of Dreams," (by Doubleday). It's about singer Dean Martin but it also looks at the culture that created him. He was part of the mob culture, and Hollywood's "Rat Pack." The book also delves into the reasons for the infamous breakup between Dean Martin and his comedy partner, Jerry Lewis. Dean Martin is now 75 years old.
Biographer Diane Wood Middlebrook. She wrote a controversial book about the troubled writer Anne Sexton. The controversy surrounded Middlebrook's source material: she had access to transcripts of Sexton's psychiatric sessions with the approval of Sexton's daughter and psychiatrist. Sexton killed herself in 1974. Sexton began writing poetry in 1956 following a suicidal breakdown and after her therapist suggested she try writing poetry. Anne Sexton: A Biography, was published by Houghton Mifflin and is now a paperback. [Originally aired 8/30/91].
Actor, director & writer Simon Callow. He's written a new acclaimed biography of Orson Welles, Orson Welles: The Road to Xanadu (Viking). Callow has appeared on stage and in many films, including "Four Weddings and a Funeral." He's also written two books on acting and a biography of Charles Laughton.
Novelist and biographer Peter Ackroyd. He's written nine novels and and biographies of Charles Dickens and T.S. Eliot. His latest biography is of the 18th century poet, painter and engraver William Blake. It's "Blake: A Biography," (Alfred A. Knopf)
Biographer Frank McLynn and writer Richard Noll examine the life of 20th century Swiss psychologist Carl Jung in their latest biographies. Frank McLynn's work, "Carl Gustav Jung" (St. Martin's Press), touches on Jung's early career, his allegiance and later his break with Sigmund Freud, as well as Jung as a controversial figure and an icon of "new age" philosophy.
Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin. The Pulitzer Prize winning author of "No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War 2" has written a memoir about her own life, "Wait 'Til Next Year" about growing up in the suburbs of New York in the 1950s.
John Berendt is the author of the book "Midnight in the Garden of Good And Evil" (Random House). Last Sunday it broke the long standing record for a hardcover work of fiction or nonfiction being on the New York Times bestseller list. It's been on the list for 187 weeks.
Author Diane Wood Middlebrook has written "Suits Me: The Double Life of Billy Tipton." (Houghton Mifflin) It traces the life of jazz musician Billy Tipton who passed as a man most of her life. Middlebrooke also wrote "Anne Sexton: A Biography." She is a professor of english at Stanford University in California.
In the tradition of the documentary "Sherman's March," Geoff Dyer has written a book about trying to write D.H. Lawrence's biography. "Out of Sheer Rage: Wrestling With D.H. Lawrence" (Farrar Strauss Giroux) ends up being both a biography and an autobiography. Dyer lives in Oxford, England, and has published several other books, including "Ways of Telling," a critical study of the art critic John Berger.