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Writers Where They Work

This is a black-and-white photograph of a woman leaning back against an iron railing, backgrounded by apartment buildings across the street. In the foreground a typewriter and papers rest on a table.
Françoise Sagan, pictured in 1955 on the balcony of her Paris apartment. The year before, at 19, she’d become the youngest author to make the New York Times best-seller list with her frank novel of teenage sexuality, “Bonjour Tristesse.” Sagan was frequently photographed with a typewriter.Credit...Bert Hardy/Hulton Archive, via Getty Images

Helen Gurley Brown, the longtime editor of Cosmopolitan magazine and author of books including “Sex and the Single Girl,” at home in New York in 1979. In a 2012 opinion essay for The New York Times, Jamie Brickhouse recalled that Brown was “thoroughly modern, but not contemporary when it came to email. Letters — typed or handwritten — were her preferred way of communicating.”

In 1982, the photographer Derek Hudson met Tennessee Williams at a bar in Key West. Williams agreed to be photographed the next day. The playwright was pictured in his study, where a white Olympia typewriter sits surrounded by papers, a Tiffany lamp, pill bottles and a glass of wine. “This was perhaps one of the saddest encounters I have had,” wrote Hudson.

Richard Wright at the typewriter in an undated photo.

William S. Burroughs smoking and writing in Paris, 1962. As Burroughs recounted, his pal Jack Kerouac typed part of the original manuscript of “Naked Lunch” in 1957. “He started and he was a marvelous typist and he typed … about….. well, I don’t know, 40 or 50 pages, quite a bit.”

Erica Ackerberg is the photo editor at the Book Review.

Posted on 14 Jul 2023 20:41 link