The Luck of Friendship: The Letters of Tennessee Williams and James Laughlin

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$39.95  $37.15
W. W. Norton & Company
Publish Date
6.1 X 1.6 X 9.4 inches | 1.65 pounds
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About the Author
James Laughlin (1914-1997) founded New Directions in 1936 while still a student at Harvard. He wrote and compiled more than a dozen books of poetry as well as stories and essays; seven volumes of his correspondence with his authors are available from W.W. Norton.

Tennessee Williams (1911-1983), born Thomas Lanier in Columbus, Mississippi, won Pulitzer Prizes for his dramas A Streetcar Named Desire and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Other plays include The Glass Menagerie, Summer and Smoke, The Rose Tattoo, Camino Real, Suddenly Last Summer, Sweet Bird of Youth, and Night of the Iguana. He also wrote a number of one-act plays, short stories, poems, and two novels, The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone and Moishe and the Age of Reason. He died at the age of seventy-two.

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1961, Thomas Keith is an editor, as well as production manager and art director, at New Directions Publishing. He lives in New York City.
Peggy L. Fox is the former president and publisher of New Directions, was Tennessee Williams's last editor, and is James Laughlin's literary coexecutor. She lives in Athens, New York.
This remarkable correspondence charts the delicate course of two literary colleagues who become fast friends; two poets who held one another aloft during the triumphant and devastating vagaries of their careers; and two men who expressed themselves in prose with the ease most of us employ in merely breathing. It's an intimate peek into a deeply moving, even profound relationship.--Doug Wright, author of I Am My Own Wife and War Paint
Reading these letters revealed a Tennessee Williams I had never known before. Certainly not in his fabulous, fantastical plays, his tortured memoirs or the Southern Gothic biographies. Instead of being a character in one of his own plays, this Tennessee is a practical and dedicated man of the theatre, an uncompromising artist and a loving and loyal friend. I have never felt closer to a fellow playwright. Tennessee, we hardly knew you!--Terrence McNally, author of Master Class
Revealing and moving.... The rivers of mutual affection, admiration, and artistry form a powerful confluence in these deeply affecting exchanges.
A remarkable window onto a literary friendship.
Both men are giants and these letters are gems. The audience for this exemplary collection should be legion.--Library Journal (starred review)