I got a degree in sociology didn’t read much fiction in college and I was a pretty political left-wing type of guy. I wanted to do some kind of work in social change and make things better for the poor man and I was very romantic and passionate about it.
My mother was making $135 a week but she had resilience and imagination. She might take frozen vegetables cook them with garlic onion and Spam and it would taste like a four-star dinner.
Years later I would hear my father say the divorce had left him dating his children. That still meant picking us up every Sunday for a matinee and if he had the money an early dinner somewhere.
One of the accidental joys of my writing life has been that I’ve had some lovely surprisingly good fortune with readers and I’ve brought readers to my dad’s work. I can’t tell you the joy that gives me. Because my father’s work was masterful.
My dad and mom divorced when I was around ten and I didn’t live with him after that though he was close by and we saw each other weekly. I wasn’t really aware that he was a writer I didn’t start reading his writing until I was about fifteen. It occurred to me then that my dad was kind of special he’s still one of my favorite writers.