A Large & Startling Figure
The Harry Crews Online Bibliography
Crews-related publications, media coverage, and website updates.
February 5, 2016
The first biography of Harry Crews will be published this spring by The University of Georgia Press.
Ted Geltner's, Blood, Bone, and Marrow: A Biography of Harry Crews, began as a series of interviews with Crews in 2010.
Geltner has written about Crews before. In 2006, an interview: "Crews at 70: Still Fully Charged," and in 2012, an obituary, both for The Gainesville Sun.
In 2010, Geltner wrote, "Hype Artists, Con Men, Pimps, and Dopesters: The Personal Journalism of Harry Crews" (PDF file), which was published in Journal of Magazine & New Media Research.
Visit Geltner's website for more info.
November 17, 2015
In 1992, Tom Thurman and Chris Iovenko directed a feature documentary about Harry Crews called Harry Crews: Guilty as Charged. The 54-minute video, documented in the video section of this site, is now available for free streaming on Vimeo. The documentary includes interviews with Crews, his son, Byron, his mother, Myrtice Turner, as well as Maggie Powell, Smith Kirkpatrick, and James Dickey. Thanks to the directors for making this film publicly available!
Additionally, I recently digitized my interview with Crews from 1996 and uploaded the complete recordings at the Internet Archive as Everything is Optimism, Beautiful, and Painless: A Conversation with Harry Crews.
March 29, 2012
As reported by The
Georgia Review on Facebook, Harry Crews died on March 28, 2012.
No one ever walked out of a Crews class unaffected. No one ever read A Feast of Snakes without wanting to throw the book across the room.
How fortunate am I to have done both.
Condolences to family and friends.
· Remembering author Harry Crews, University of Georgia Press Blog
· Harry Crews, A Darkly Comic Novelist, Dies at 76, Margalit Fox, NY Times
· Harry Crews, Beyond the Bravado, Dwight Garner, NY Times
· Harry Crews dead at 76, Ted Geltner, The Gainesville Sun
· Author Harry Crews: Teacher of Writers, Student of Life, Ruth Ellen Rasche, Florida Magazine
· Harry Crews, R.I.P., Ben Steelman, Wilmington Star News
· Author Harry Crews dies at age 76, Tallahassee.com
· Writer and University of Florida teacher Harry Crews dies at 76, Colette Bancroft, Tampa Bay Times
· Author Harry Crews Dies at 76, Laurance Kitts, Allvoices.com
· Harry Crews, Writer of Dark Fiction, Is Dead at 76, Margalit Fox, The New York Times
· Harry Crews On Writing And Feeling Like A 'Freak', "Fresh Air" on NPR
· Friday Afternoon Ramblings, The Ramblings of D. A. Adams
· On the Death of Harry Crews, Stephen Corey, The Georgia Review Blog
· RIP Harry Crews--A Rambling Riff on a Southern Great, Biblioklept.org
· Remembering Harry Crews, Maud Newton, The Awl
· R.I.P. Harry Crews, my former teacher, MaudNewton.com
· Naked soul: Writer Harry Crews told hard tales of rural South, Claire Howorth, The Daily
· Author Harry Crews dies in Florida, Scott Hiaasen, The Miami Herald
· Harry Crews, novelist of hard lives and dark corners of the South, dies at 76, Matt Schudel, The Washington Post
· Harry Crews dies at 76; Southern writer with darkly comic vision, Elaine Woo, Los Angeles Times
· Remembering Harry Crews, Paul Iorio, The Huffington Post
· "Survival is triumph enough." -- Harry Crews (June 7, 1935 - March 28, 2012), Meredith Yayanos, Coilhouse.net
· Guestbook, Obituary, The Gainesville Sun
· Famed Novelist Harry Crews Is Dead at 76, Roger Friedman, ShowBiz41.com
· Harry Crews and the Death of Southern Literature, Baynard Woods, The Millions.com
· Harry Crews' sad apologies, Keith Gray, ImposeMagazine.com
· Harry Crews and 'getting naked', Steve Oney, Los Angeles Times
· The Gentle Heart of Mob Violence, Alex Maslansky, Los Angeles Review of Books Blog
Older articles worth reading:
· Harry Crews' Mother is his Best Critic, Jeff Calder, SwimmingPoolQs.com
· Out of the Gates, Slowly Bleeding: The Life & Times of Harry Crews, Rich Weidman, Alternative Reel
· When Harry Met Dennis, Dwight Garner, The New York Times
· Book Ads: The Golden Age, 1962-73 & Crews slide, Dwight Garner, The New York Times
Recent Crews publications:
· "We Are All of Us Passing Through", The Georgia Review, Winter 2011
· "Leaving Home for Home", The Georgia Review, Winter 2007
· "A Writer's Face: The Letters of Harry Crews", The Georgia Review, Winter 2007
· An Afternoon with Harry Crews, Alex Orlando, Tampa Bay Times
March 29, 2011
Recently, while researching for a book on the Gainesville music scene, Marty Jourard found this article in The Florida Alligator, the University of Florida newspaper, dated May 4, 1968. Here's the full text:
"A former UF student and currently a fiction novelist will be on campus Friday for an autograph signing party, according to Lance Lichentwalter, director of the UF bookstore.
Harry Crews, author of The Gospel Singer, graduated from the UF with his master's in English, and will be a professor of comprehensive English beginning in September. He is now teaching English at a junior college in Ft. Lauderdale where he lives with his wife and son.
He entered the UF, in his own words, 'not because I thought anyone there could teach me to write fiction (which I had wanted to do since I was a boy), but because I thought someone there might teach me how to make a living while I taught myself to write fiction.'
The autograph signing party will be Friday from 3 to 5 in room 122 of the Reitz Union and is sponsored by the bookstore.
Andrew Lytle, editor of The Sewanee Review, said of Crews' novel: 'The Gospel Singer . . . is an allegory of our times, but sensual, concrete. The divine speaks through song; yet never becomes incarnate. Spirit and sensibility remain separate and meet only to destroy. Perhaps it is no allegory but a story of flesh eating flesh and going hungry. Harry Crews has a rare talent. His craftsmanship is perfecting it.'
Richard E. Kim, author of The Martyred, said of the work: 'Symbolically conceived and symbolically structured, Mr. Crews' novel succeeds, quite effectively . . ., in portraying all that is ugly, grotesque, and ultimately absurd in man's desire and quest for his instant salvation through his mindless idolization of the instrument of salvation itself . . . The Gospel Singer is a remarkable first novel and as such I hope it will be widely read.'
The jacket blurb says the main character 'gives way to his torment, and in doing so he reveals to the believers who have gathered at his feet just how little he is of God's man, and how much he has contributed to the corruption of each of them, In a climactic scene of total destruction and devastating irony, his followers take revenge on him for the truth he has finally found the tongue to tell.'
The novel is Crews' first, but this initial effort is written in a very exact style, a highly stylistic form and in clear, concise prose. It is the story, essentially, of a musical artist and his torment in a Georgia town."
". . . he shows up in subsequent Florida Alligator articles over the years as he becomes well-known, but the only way to find those is do what I did . . . flip a lot of pages!
Thanks to Marty Jourard for unearthing this article from Crews' early writing career.
The Special Collections in the east wing of the U of F library has every issue of the Florida Alligator . . .
I love Crews' writing, Scar Lover, that's quite a read, A Feast of Snakes . . . A Childhood (I read an excerpt while in college, made me cry, not easy to do) . . ."
June 9, 2011
If you haven't already watched it, Tyler Turkle's "Harry Crews: Survival is Triumph Enough" is
still not available at bside.
March 13, 2011
Check out a new feature on the site: Portraits from an Interview with Harry Crews.
On January 27, 1979, Tom Graves interviewed Harry Crews at the University of Florida. In addition to conducting a full-length interview ("Dead on with Harry Crews"), Graves captured nine, compelling portraits of the author. By special arrangement with Graves, these portraits are available for purchase as high quality prints.
In addition, Graves has contributed a short essay, "An Interview Recalled," with details about the interview and the portrait session.
December 8, 2009
Maud Newton mentions Harry's influence in this L.A. Times article, "Off the Shelf: Maud Newton's life - a novel, not a memoir" (November 22, 2009). Thanks to Skip Hulett, Head Librarian for the Georgiana Collection, Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
October 19, 2009
Tyler Turkle's 2007 documentary, Harry Crews - Survival is Triumph Enough, is available on DVD at Indieflix.
"Interviewed in 2006 and 2007 by artist and filmmaker, Tyler Turkle, Crews recounts growing up in Bacon County, Georgia, during the Great Depression. He describes, in vivid detail, his near fatal childhood coupled with stark tales of his adult alcoholism, drug abuse and the tragic, accidental drowning of his first born son. In a candid, relentless delivery Crews weaves a web of pain and suffering and the brutal consequences of his own actions. Throughout, Crews remains tough as nails and sums up his life by quoting Mark Twain: 'I have reached the age of seventy by strictly following a regimen that would have killed anybody else.'"
August 31, 2009
This Long Century has published several interesting Crews-related documents from the Crews manuscript collection at The Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
Skip Hulett writes: "A couple of Harry Crews images [manuscript page, photo] and a brief audio file that aren't, as far as I know, available anywhere else. The picture of Harry lecturing in the big UF auditorium, from his personal cache of photos, may have been published, but Harry didn't have any specific info on where."
"This Long Century is an assembly of inspirations, observations and ideas that exist purely through invited contributions from people considered outstanding within their field of work."
Thanks to Skip for making these pieces available.
August 30, 2009
Call me late to the party, but tonight I found an interview with Harry Crews by Jesse Pearson that was published in LA's Vice Magazine back in the Fiction Issue 2008 (January, v15, n12, I believe).
March 30, 2009
The UGA Library's official podcast link, where Harry's podcast resides, is now available.
February 20, 2009
The Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library has issued "a 20 minute podcast on the Harry Crews collection that includes clips from audiotapes in his collection. It's called 'Put Your Ass on the Chair'--The Harry Crews Collection & is available via iTunes." You also can download the podcast directly from the GCSU website.
Thanks to Skip Hulett, Head Librarian for the Georgiana Collection, Hargrett Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
September 29, 2008
Harry Crews has been selected for the 2009 Florida Artists Hall of Fame.
Thanks to Tyler Turkle for passing along the press release. If you have a few minutes, check out Tyler's State of Snakes.
December 16, 2006
Philip Booth's review of Crews' novel An American Family: The Baby with the Curious Markings appears online this month at Saw Palm, a new literary journal produced by the University of South Florida English Department.
September 7, 2006
Citation added for Harry Crews' novel An American Family: The Baby with the Curious Markings in Novels.
Citation added for Damon Sauve's biographical entry in Southern Writers: A New Biographical Dictionary in Reference.
David Shaftel wrote a profile of Crews titled "An Aging Wild Man Writes Again, Quietly" which was published in the August 22, 2006, edition of The New York Times. The profile features comments by several of Crews' students, including Lucy Harrison, who has contributed two perspectives on Crews for this site.
Jeff Calder, who was a student of Crews in 1972, read the Times profile and contacted me about a profile of Crews that he had written. "Harry Crews' Mother is his Best Critic" was published in March 1977 in the Atlanta Gazette. The full text of the profile, along with a interesting look back at those days, can be read on his blog.
May 22, 2006
John L. Parker, Jr., wrote a profile of Crews some time in 1979 for the Tallahassee Democrat. The piece, titled "A World of Hurt," was published later in several Florida Sunday newspaper magazines, including the St. Petersburg Times: Floridian. Parker's profile also appeared in his non-fiction collection, Runners & Other Ghosts on the Trail, most recently published as Runners & Other Dreamers (Cedarwinds Publishing Co., 1988). More details as they become available.
Thanks to John L. Parker, Jr., for contributiong to this piece.
May 17, 2006
Further belatedness, two film adaptations of Crews's novels have surfaced this year.
The Gypsy's Curse, directed by Philippe Decoufle, stars Johnny Depp, Harvey Keitel, and Vanessa Paradis. Additional details as they become available.
As noted back in April 2003, Julian Goldberger's version of The Hawk Is Dying stars Paul Giamatti as George Gattling. This film was shown at the Sundance Film Festival in Januray 2006 and is scheduled to appear in the Directors Fortnight series at the Cannes Film Festival on May 19th. The film was reviewed in Variety.
Thanks to Philip Booth for contributing to this piece.
May 16, 2006
Vagabond Books has published Crews's first novel in eight years, An American Family: The Baby With The Curious Markings. The 103-page book is available in three editions: cloth hardcover ($20), 300 signed, bound, and numbered copies ($125), and 26 hand-bound, slip-cased, and signed special editions bound by Sylph Publications. Craig Graham, publisher, also published Crews's last book, Where Does One Go When There's No Place Left to Go? (1998).
Ted Geltner's profile of Crews, Crews at 70: Still Fully Charged, appears in the May 7, 2006, edition of the Gainesville Sun.
Belatedly announced here, Harry Crews appears in the documentary Searching for the Wrong-Eyed Jesus. Directed by Andrew Douglas and written by Steve Haisman, the film premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in May, 2004. In June, the film won the Jury Award for Best Documentary at the Seattle Film Festival. The DVD was released in the U.S. in March 2006. More information about the film can be found at IMDB.
Thanks to Steve Haisman, Craig Graham, Ted Geltner, and Kyle Poland for contributing to this piece.
May 24, 2005
Citation added for John Pritchard's Junior Ray in Book Blurbs.
July 6, 2004
Citation added for Don Swaim's interview with Crews on the CBS Radio show "Book Beat" in Interviews.
December 7, 2003
Citation added for Merry Whiteford's If Wishes Were Horses in Book Blurbs.
December 6, 2003
Introduction added for section in Book Blurbs.
Citations updated with contents, pagination, and cover scans in Collections.
Citation added for Michael Hargraves' Harry Crews: A First Bibliography in Bibliography.
Citation updated with cover scan of Michael Hargraves' Harry Crews: A Bibliography in Bibliography.
December 5, 2003
Citation added for Russ Schneider's Siege: A Novel of the Eastern Front, 1942 in Book Blurbs.
Citation added for Owen Gilman's Vietnam and the Southern Imagination in Criticism.
Citation updated with cover scan for Douglas Hunt's The Dolphin Reader in Anthologies.
Citation updated for William Hjortsberg's Nevermore with a link to Michael Dare's The Legend of William Hjortsberg in Book Blurbs.
Citation updated with cover scan for Lisa Howorth's The South: A Treasury of Art and Literature in Anthologies.
Citation updated with cover scan for The Georgia Review (Spring 1986) in Anthologies.
November 26, 2003
Added contact info for Crews (c/o Simon & Schuster) in Web Sites.
November 22, 2003
Citation updated with cover scan for Crews' essay "Mary Steenburgen: Born with the Gift" in Playgirl, September 1983, in Essays.
Citation added for Kevin Canty's Honeymoon and Other Stories in Book Blurbs.
Citation updated with page numbers for Dan O'Connor's Iron Mike: A Mike Tyson Reader in Nonfiction Anthologies.
Citation updated for the documentary, in which Crews briefly appears, "Mr. Sears' Catalogue" in Video.
Citation updated with cover scan for Cathi Unsworth's interview with Crews in Purr in Interviews.
November 13, 2003
Citation added for the documentary, in which Crews briefly appears, "Mr. Sears' Catalogue" in Video.
QuickTime movie of Crews' appearance in "Mr. Sears' Catalogue" added in Video.
Citation updated for Gary Hawkins' documentary "The Rough South of Harry Crews" in Video.
RealVideo movie of Crews' complete, 6.5 minute interview on The Dennis Miller show added in Video.
May 2, 2003
Citation added for Daniel Halpern's Not For Bread Alone in Nonfiction Anthologies.
May 1, 2003
The full-text of Jim Knipfel's interview "Stories Told in Blood: Listening to Harry Crews" added to Interviews.
Citation added for Dan O'Connor's Iron Mike: A Mike Tyson Reader in Nonfiction Anthologies.
Citation updated with cover scan of John Sayles' Union Dues in Book Blurbs.
Citation updated with blurb for Max Schott' Murphy's Romance in Book Blurbs.
April 27, 2003
All citations updated with cover scans in Book Reviews.
Citation added for Maxim Lachaud's "Carnivalesque Rituals and the Theological Grotesque in the Southern Novels of Cormac McCarthy and Harry Crews" in Literary Criticism.
April 23, 2003
Citation added for Jocelyn A. Beard's Best Women's Stage Monologues of 1991 in Plays.
Citation added for Al Dixon's The Quotable South: A Compendium of Eclectic Quotes About the South in General Reference.
April 21, 2003
Citation added for Richard Price's Ladies' Man in Book Blurbs.
Citation added for Max Schott's Murphy's Romance in Book Blurbs.
April 20, 2003
Jay Atkinson's "A Nasty, Bloody Business: Learning to Write with Harry Crews" profiles Crews as writing teacher in the March/April 2003 issue of Poets & Writers. Citation added in Portraits.
Two stories from the Gainesville Sun indicate possible film production for Crews's novel The Hawk is Dying:
"The other film that we've been prepping for about a year is 'The Hawk Is Dying,' based on a Harry Crews novel that has been made into a screenplay," Hagin said. All the locations for that film are planned for Alachua County, she added. ["County rethinks role with film commission" (March 08, 2003)]
The Antidote films Web site confirms plans to make the film:
New York-based Antidote Films plans to start filming "The Hawk is Dying" in Alachua County in the fall. An Antidote employee who answered the phone declined to release any other information, but Hagin said the company is lining up funding. The film is based on the 1973 novel by former University of Florida professor Harry Crews. Crews said he knew little about the project and chuckled at Antidote's secrecy. Asked of his involvement in the project, he said: "Yeah, I'm involved. They reached out a hand with a quarter million dollars, and I'm going to take it. That's my involvement in it." ["Filming cut for now on movie starring teen star" (March 22, 2003)]
Currently Antidote is preparing the following films for production: "Mysterious Skin" with director Gregg Araki, "The Hawk is Dying" with director Julian Goldberger, and "Chain" with director Jem Cohen.
Citation added for Sean S. Cunningham's film "The New Kids" in Screenplays. Crews was uncredited screenwriter during the film's production.
Citation added for William Tester's Head, a story collection, in Book Blurbs.
Citation added for Sterling Watson's novel The Calling in Portraits.
Citation updated with cover scan for Matthew Guinn's "The Grit Emigre in Harry Crews's Fiction" in Literary Criticism.
Citation updated with cover scan for Esquire's "Mom, the Flag, & Apple Pie: Great American Writers on Great American Things" in Nonfiction Anthologies.
Citation updated with cover scans of William Hjortsberg's Alp and Gray Matters in Book Reviews.
Citation updated with cover scans of Mary McGarry Morris's Vanished in Book Reviews.
Citation updated with cover scans of Madison Smartt Bell's Save Me, Joe Louis in Book Reviews.
Citation updated with cover scans of Dan Wakefield's Starting Over in Book Reviews.
Citation updated with cover scan of Maurice O'Sullivan's The Florida Reader: Visions of Paradise from 1530 to Present in Nonfiction Anthologies.
Citation updated with cover scan for Burt Britton's Self-Portrait: Book People Picture Themselves in Portraits.
Corrected inadvertent omission of names in cases of multiple authors in Literary Criticism.
Updated About this Site.
Added Screenplays to Drama section.
Added News to Features section.