John Cheever: The writer’s task is to evoke “the perfumes of life.”

From The Writer’s Almanac:

It’s the birthday of novelist and short-story writer John Cheever. He wrote for more than 50 years and published more than 200 short stories. He’s known for writing about the world of American suburbia. Even though he was one of the most popular short-story writers of the 20th century, he once said that he only earned “enough money to feed the family and buy a new suit every other year.”

In 1935 he was published in The New Yorker for the first time, and he would continue to write for the magazine for the rest of his life. His stories were collected in books including The Way Some People Live (1943) and The Enormous Radio and Other Stories (1953). The Stories of John Cheever, published in 1978, won the Pulitzer Prize and became one of the few collections of short stories ever to make the New York Times best-seller list.

Cheever once described the writer’s task as to evoke “the perfumes of life: sea water, the smoke of burning hemlock and the breasts of women.”

Speak Your Mind