One of My Heroes

I want to be this: 96 years old and still writing, still being read.

Herman Wouk, four years short of a century,
has landed another book deal.

I love this!
expand-hwouk21


Wouk is one of our national treasures, the author of numerous great “middlebrow” books.

Middlebrow is something we’ve lost pretty much in our culture, to our great detriment. These were the sort of books that transcended pulp yet were not so highbrow as to be inaccessible.

Wouk majored in such works. Here are a few:

The Caine Mutiny (winner of the Pulitzer Prize)

Marjorie Morningstar

Youngblood Hawke

The Winds of War (his masterpiece, IMO)

War and Remembrance

And these weren’t short books, either. Wouk is a master storyteller. And where did he learn his craft? From radio! He wrote for the legendary radio comedian Fred Allen, and I’m sure that’s how he learned conflict, character and structure. You can’t write sketch comedy without them. Or a successful novel.

The Caine Mutiny proved to be so popular it became the basis of both a film and a play. It is considered one of the best portrayals of Navy life and is stellar courtroom drama. If you’ve never read it or seen the film, do yourself a favor and go for both.

So Mr. Wouk, Godspeed. You are an inspiration. I want to be just like you when I’m looking over the fence at my approaching century mark.

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