By Nigel Hamilton
Overview This magnificent work--basically, a how-to book--is complete in its therapy of every little thing essential to making a released biography. Hamilton, who has authored biographies of box Marshall Montgomery, John F. Kennedy, and invoice Clinton, the following leaves not anything unsaid at the topic. He completely information biography's time table and motivation and describes its audience, who will anticipate anything of a revelation in regards to the human condition...He also scrutinizes autobiography and memoir writing, the outcome of telling the reality, and biography's afterlife. the outstanding excerpts Hamilton selects from released biographies to demonstrate his issues are either edifying and exciting. --Robert Kelly (*Library magazine* 20080501) Drawing guide from his personal life of biographic paintings and others'--including Samuel Johnson, Robert Caro, David McCullough, Hermione Lee, Edmund Morris, and others whom Hamilton has fashionable, identified and labored with--the writer takes readers on an highbrow trip throughout the artistic technique, from notion to publishing...Hamilton's ardour, lyricism and choice of telling anecdotes make this "short e-book of recommendation" an unforeseen page-turner; it really is demanding to not get stuck up within the author's romantic imaginative and prescient of biography, a kind he believes has approximately as many variations as song. Elucidating not only the dos and don'ts of biography, but additionally the whys and hows, Hamilton has created a motivating, empowering consultant for writers (and lovers) of the style. (*Publishers Weekly (starred review)* 20080706) nobody writing biography can have the funds for to disregard this edifying e-book. Nigel Hamilton has the intensity and breadth of expertise to write down a few style that he champions...While this can be a “how-to” ebook, even the main pro biographer will locate a lot of price approximately deciding on a topic; doing proposals for biographies; dealing with interviewing; negotiating the perils of publishing unauthorized biographies; handling biographical narratives; writing with an viewers in brain; and the nexus among memoir, autobiography, and biography. --Carl Rollyson (*thebiographerscraft.com* 20080726) [*How To Do Biography*] bargains a well-written, good, and, given its brevity, particularly encompassing overview of what it truly is biographer does and the way he is going approximately doing it...Hamilton is kind of eloquent and persuasive in discussing how issues come round on the finish, not just at dying, yet after, while the existence meets posterity. --Sven Birkerts (*Boston Globe* ) The e-book is filled with stable recommendation and fascinating tales. --Owen Richardson (*The Age* ) concerning the writer Nigel Hamilton is the writer of prize-winning biographies of box Marshal Bernard Montgomery and of John F. Kennedy. he's at present a Fellow of the McCormack Graduate university of coverage reports, collage of Massachusetts Boston, the place he's writing a three-volume biography of President Clinton.
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Additional resources for How to Do Biography: A Primer
I never saw him at all,” Dr. 6 David McCullough, a highly experienced writer and broadcaster, was more careful. McCullough would undertake the life of President Harry Truman, and, like Caro, would win the Pulitzer Prize—but, as he later conﬁded, he had ﬁrst intended to write a very different life. “I’d started working [in 1982] on a book about Pablo Picasso,” McCullough later revealed. “I quit that book. I stopped after a few months because I found I disliked him so. He was, to me, a repellent human being, and he didn’t really have the story of the kind that interested me.
The moral, then, is simple. Your aims and objectives must not only be well stated in your proposal, but must be achievable. And this leads to the question of whether you are the right person to undertake the biography: in other words, to the question of your credentials. Sadly, there is still, to the best of my knowledge, no university that offers a degree in biography or biographical studies. Your suitability for the task of writing a proposed biography is therefore difﬁcult for the publisher to assess, other than on past evidence.
I quit that book. I stopped after a few months because I found I disliked him so. He was, to me, a repellent human being, and he didn’t really have the story of the kind that interested me. He was instantly successful. He never really went very far or 38 g e tting star te d had any adventures, so to speak. He was an immensely important painter. He was the Krakatoa of modern art. ”7 Picasso’s posthumous loss was Truman’s gain—one that led, in the 1990s, not only to a Pulitzer Prize for McCullough but to a widescale reconsideration of the thirtythird president of the United States.