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RIP Pat Conroy

I was very sad to hear this morning that Pat Conroy had passed away.

The NEW YORK TIMES has his obituary:
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/03/05/books/pat-conroy-who-wove-his-family-strife-into-novels-of-carolina-dies-at-70.html

Conroy was a brilliant man, and a great great writer. His PRINCE OF TIDES ranks among the greatest novels of the twentieth century, in my opinion, and many of his other titles were damned fine as well -- BEACH MUSIC, THE GREAT SANTINI, LORDS OF DISCIPLINE, THE WATER IS WIDE...

A number of them were made into films. Some better than others, but even the worst of the movies was pretty damned good, which not many writers can boast. The troubled relationship with his family, and his father in particular, was the emotional core of much of his best work. There has seldom been a clearer case of an artist transforming his own pain and suffering into something transcendent and beautiful. I do not think he was a happy man, sad to say, but he was a courageous and outspoken one, who left the world a better place than he found it.

I met Conroy only once, when I had the honor of hosting him for a booksigning at the Jean Cocteau.



It's a memory I will long treasure... and when Pat said how much he admired A GAME OF THRONES and its sequels, well... I could not have been more flattered if F. Scott Fitzgerald himself had returned from beyond the grave to say he liked my stuff.

Rest in peace, Pat. Your words will live.

Comments

( 5 comments )
el_regrs
Mar. 6th, 2016 05:10 am (UTC)
Damn. I heard he was sick, but... damn. This makes me sad.
tholland34
Mar. 6th, 2016 09:46 am (UTC)
Thank you for sharing your memory
I had the pleasure of reading Pat Conroy for most of my adult life starting with Beach Music and working my way backwards. I can honestly say that The Lords of Discipline impacted me as much as any book I have ever consumed. When I read on his blog about his trip to Jean Cocteau and spending an evening with you, I imagined real magic floating through the air... two of my favorite authors that shared a love of words talking about their craft. I truly wished I could have been there that night. As a fan, it gave me a strange pleasure to see two authors that told their stories through such different genres have such an appreciation of one another. Not as cliché as a fraternity, but more a band of brothers. Thank you for taking the time to acknowledge Pat's legacy and share your memories.
Mrs. Moore
Mar. 6th, 2016 08:22 pm (UTC)
Pat Conroy was so generous to budding authors. I'm glad I heard of his death through your kind words; the South mourns a favored son.
northofboston
Mar. 6th, 2016 09:29 pm (UTC)
He really was one of the most underrated writers of his generation.
phimseto
Mar. 7th, 2016 05:00 pm (UTC)
Definitely a big loss to American literature
Pretty much every guy my age grew up reading and watching The Great Santini in high school, though my personal favorite was always The Lords of Discipline. George, I'm curious - I imagine the two of you talked shop. What was something that you came away from the conversation with about the craft of writing?
( 5 comments )

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