August 6, 1989
Re: Elizabeth Becker's review of Susan Fromberg Schaeffer's "Buffalo Afternoon" (Book Review, June 11), Where were Richard Eder, Carolyn See or Charles Champlin when we needed them? What does Becker, an expert on the Vietnam War, know about the art of fiction writing? Has she ever read Schaeffer's previous works, such as "Anya," "Love," or "Madness of a Seduced Woman"? Has she ever written a novel? Becker seemed overly concerned about the author's inaccuracies regarding facts of the war and the author's inability to give the right answers to the problems the war created.
October 30, 1988
In Craig Modderno's Outtake about "The Hard Way" (an upcoming Universal Studios film starring Michael J. Fox, to be directed by John Badham), I've received perhaps more than my share of credit for the screenplay. In fact, the original draft of the script was written by Lem Dobbs for producer Bill Sackheim. I was hired to rewrite the script, and Badham and Fox were offered my version of the project, hence Dobbs, a fine writer, was inadvertently forgotten in the blizzard of drafts and deal memos.
November 26, 1989
I'm not saying the blacklist didn't have an emotional effect on us; it did. Hugo was a fine writer and a devoted craftsman, and struggling to survive as a writer in a country where the language was not his own--at a time in history when he couldn't even write under his own name--added a terrible frustration to the problems of supporting six children. And yes, he was a pretty awesome paterfamilias; after all, he worked largely at home, and our house in Mexico was small. But he was also a wonderful paterfamilias: He instituted weekly baseball games, and picnics, and trips to Acapulco, and stories at bedtime every Saturday night, and a hundred other kinds of adventures.
August 18, 1985
Martha Mark writes of the desert in the spirit of Joseph Wood Krutch, which is the highest compliment I can bestow upon her ("Counting the Majestic Desert Sheep," Other Views, Aug. 7). I cannot help but also comment upon the curious juxtaposition of her article and that of the adjacent piece written about Hugh Hefner ("Hefner Agrees to Tell His Life Story" by Elizabeth Mehren). Mehren is a fine writer and what I am about to say is not to disparage her considerable talents. My problem is with the mentality of printing what appears to be an advertisement for Hefner's book.
July 16, 2011 |
In the afternoon of Dec. 30, 2009, a meek Jordanian doctor who had gained access to the top commanders of Al Qaeda was driven onto a secret CIA base at Khost in eastern Afghanistan for his first formal debriefing. More than a dozen CIA officers and other Americans stood in a receiving line to welcome the so-called "golden source. " Camp cooks had even baked him a celebratory cake. Until then, no American had ever met the star informant, and only a handful even knew his name: Humam al-Balawi.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 16, 2001
"Re "San Jose Almost Arrives," Aug. 14: I lived in San Jose for 20 years. I raised two children there and loved every day in that wonderful town. Nice people. Nice weather. While a fine writer, Herb Caen was an elitist. I believe he spent a total of one day in San Jose. Steven V. Behm Burbank