Saturday, November 26, 2016

Henry Bemis Books reaches a literary landmark

November 26, 2016:

Henry Bemis Books' Literary Birthdays series reached and passed the 300 mark today with the additions of biographies of the cartoonist Roz Chast and the late CBS News journalist Eric Sevareid. Their additions bring the series to 302.

"This has been a labor in self-education," HBB owner Lin Thompson says. "It is a real pleasure to re-learn what I had forgotten, add things I didn't know, and get to share it with a few friends and passers-by."

The series, begin- like most things here- haphazardly in March 2015- and assumed a life of its own. Thompson, who has written all 302 entries, generally allows an hour for research and writing each one. "If it's someone I feel a personal affection for, I make take two hours," he says. "Invariably, they are the least-read. Maybe I'm trying too hard to seem serious with them."

The profiles average 2000 words each. Thompson reckons the series has now surpassed the word count of Tolstoi's War & Peace by nearly 20,000. "I guess that shows I have no excuse not to be cranking out a novel every year, he commented. "Well, other than the complete lack of original ideas."

The Literary Search Guide can be found on the right side of the Henry Bemis Books blog home page.

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