Articles by Bill Morris

June 21, 2017

How David Shields Turned Me Into a U.F.O. 2

This is not a knock on Shields—or me—because all writers are free to choose their subject matter and use their source material as they see fit.

May 17, 2017

Prescient and Precious: On Joan Didion 5

Joan Didion is an extraordinarily gifted and prescient writer whose enterprise seems to me to be poisoned by something that may or not be fatal: she can be cloyingly precious.

March 24, 2017

John Morris and His Astonishing Century 0

My inventory led to an unassailable conclusion: not all that much has changed in my lifetime, really, and certainly not in the fundamental ways my grandfather’s day-to-day life changed.

January 11, 2017

Those Who Left Us: Select Literary Obituaries from 2016 4

This year we lost a Nobel laureate, several Pulitzer Prize winners, many writers with wide readerships, and many more who never achieved the acclaim or the audiences they deserved. 

October 26, 2016

Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine Turns 75 0

EQMM can be seen as a pioneering force in what is now a fact of life in American fiction — the blending of supposedly “high” and “low” literary forms, the blurring of genre boundaries, the growing sense among writers and readers that the old strictures and snobberies hampered free and fruitful cross-pollination.

September 30, 2016

Black and Proud: James McBride on James Brown 1

James McBride’s ‘Kill ‘Em and Leave’ is a scorchingly honest examination of the racial divide that explains why America continues to be a bloody and schizophrenic place.

August 18, 2016

Octogenarian Hotties 21

Publishing’s abiding obsession with fresh voices ignores a curious fact about our current literary scene: a startling number of the finest writers at work today are not twentysomethings; they’re eightysomethings.

August 5, 2016

Don’t Quit Your Day Job: Richard Vine’s ‘Soho Sins’ 1

SoHo Sins succeeds because it was written by a man with a day job, a job that gives him intimate knowledge of how a subculture works – its personalities and preoccupations, its business practices, its styles, its silliness and occasional beauty.

July 21, 2016

Everything Takes Longer than You Expect: The Millions Interviews Hannah Gersen 0

Writing is gratifying on a daily basis. If I didn’t love doing it, I would have stopped a long time ago.

June 3, 2016

Messing with People’s Expectations: The Millions Interviews Mark Binelli 0

I love the idea of grafting details from my life — a white Italian-American living in 2016, in his 40s — grafting that onto the life of a black singer born in Cleveland in the late-1920s. Being able to mix all that stuff together was really appealing to me.