Fictionalized accounts of John Howard Griffin, Jack Elliott Myers, and Anna Akhmatova, portraying the struggles and sacrifices of the writing life.
Tracy Daugherty is an acclaimed biographer of authors, as well as a distinguished fiction author in his own right. In SNOW AND STRAW he braids together these two skills, presenting three novellas that offer fictionalized accounts of the lives of very disparate writers: John Howard Griffin, Jack Elliott Myers, and Anna Akhmatova. What connects their stories—aside from Daugherty's mastery of language and narrative—is the insight they offer into the writing life. All three of his subjects, along with a wide cast of other characters real and imagined who populate their stories (including, in the Griffin account, a vivid portrait of Thomas Merton), are human, all too human, and Daugherty grants them their flaws along with their achievements—suggesting, in the process, that it may not be possible to separate the two. He also demonstrates, compelling, that sometimes it is fiction that conveys the greatest truths.
Tracy Daugherty is the author of thirteen books of fiction and eight nonfiction books, including biographies of Donald Barthelme, Joseph Heller, Joan Didon, and Billy Lee Brammer. His biography of Larry McMurtry is forthcoming. His work has been honored by fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. He lives in Oregon with his wife, the writer and musician Marjorie Sandor.Author City: CORVALLIS, OR USA