“Until I got to college and started reading different kinds of fiction, more contemporary stuff, I wanted to write the black Shining or the black Salem’s Lot—basically if you took a Stephen King title and put “The Black” in front of it, that’s what I wanted to do.” Colson Whitehead
In this episode of The Archive Project, Colson Whitehead gives an overview of his life as a writer and the ups and downs along his journey. He discusses his childhood spent immersed in science fiction and fantasy; his job at the Village Voice; the act of writing his first novel and, when faced with rejection, contemplating other possible careers; and living in a post-9/11 New York City. Toward the end of his lecture, Whitehead reads from his then-latest novel, Sag Harbor.
Colson Whitehead is the New York Times bestselling author of the novels The Noble Hustle, Zone One, Sag Harbor, The Intuitionist, John Henry Days, Apex Hides the Hurt, and one short story collection, The Colossus of New York. His latest novel, The Underground Railroad (2016), received critical acclaim and was chosen as the 2016 Oprah Book Club selection. A Pulitzer Prize finalist and a recipient of MacArthur and Guggenheim fellowships, Whitehead lives in New York City.