Ann Beattie (September 08, 1947 - ..)
Born: 8th September, 1947
Nationality: American
Profession/Occupation: Writer
Region: Washington, D.C., United States, "The Doctor's House", "Mrs. Nixon", "Chilly Scenes of Winter"

Ann Beattie Facts

Biography

Ann Beattie, (born September 8, 1947, Washington, D.C., U.S.), American writer of short stories and novels whose characters, having come of age in the 1960s, often have difficulties adjusting to the cultural values of later generations.

Beattie graduated from the American University in Washington, D.C., in 1969 and received a master of arts degree from the University of Connecticut in 1970. Her short stories were published in The New Yorker and other literary magazines beginning in the early 1970s. She published her first collection of stories, Distortions, in 1976. Her first novel, Chilly Scenes of Winter, also appeared in 1976; it was subsequently adapted as the film Head over Heels (1979), which was later rereleased as Chilly Scenes of Winter (1982).

Beattie's characters are usually passive, alienated people who cannot extricate themselves from unsatisfying careers and lives. In detached, unemotional prose Beattie chronicles their unfulfilling lives. In her early works, there is little examination of motivation, but the depth of her characters increases in her later works. Historical background is usually absent. Beattie's stripped-down style was variously praised as reminiscent of Ernest Hemingway's minimalism and criticized as detached and shallow.

Other collections of her stories include Secrets and Surprises (1978), The Burning House (1982), Where You'll Find Me, and Other Stories (1986), Park City (1998), Perfect Recall (2001), Follies (2005), The State We're In: Maine Stories (2015), and The Accomplished Guest (2017), all of which chronicle the vagaries of human attempts at communication and connection. Other novels include Falling in Place (1980) and Picturing Will (1989). Another You (1995) tells the story of a cynical English professor and his adulterous wife, and My Life, Starring Dara Falcon (1997) is an exploration of the relationship between a young woman in a dead-end marriage and a manipulative aspiring actress. The Doctor's House (2002) portrays the impact of a despicable father and an alcoholic mother on their adult children. In the unconventional novel Mrs. Nixon (2011), Beattie imagined the life of first lady Pat Nixon and also discussed the art of writing. Her other works include the children's book Spectacles (1985), which deals with the supernatural, and Alex Katz (1987), a collection of essays in art criticism.

Top 27 Ann Beattie quotes

If you could have a book called My Favorite Six Stories, I don't think I'd have trouble doing that.
Book
Could
Doing
Favorite
Six
Stories
Think
Trouble
You
I feel that these stories are being written to articulate certain confusions and disappointments, and I do mean to shake up the reader, and I do hope they're on target.
Articulate
Being
Certain
Disappointments
Feel
Hope
I feel
Mean
Reader
Shake
Stories
Target
Up
Written
While I would agree that I write about serious subjects, and that they're not necessarily the most pleasant subjects or even the most pleasant people, as a writer I just think about the humorous aspects of these things - that's what keeps me going when I'm writing a story.
About
Agree
Aspects
Even
Going
Humorous
I write
Just
Keeps
Me
Most
Necessarily
People
Pleasant
I've been in this business for a long time, and I no longer think that anything that I do by way of clarification is ever going to eradicate the mistakes.
Anything
Been
Business
Clarification
Eradicate
Ever
Going
Long
Long time
Longer
Mistakes
Think
Time
Way
I don't even correct people when they mispronounce my name now.
Correct
Even
Name
Now
People
Nobody can assume that, to a writer, everything is off-limits.
Assume
Everything
Nobody
Writer
I think almost always that what gets me going with a story is the atmosphere, the visual imagery, and then I people it with characters, not the other way around.
Almost
Always
Around
Atmosphere
Characters
Gets
Going
I think
Imagery
Me
Other
People
Story
Then
I've spent my life supporting myself.
Life
My life
Myself
Spent
Supporting
Well, a few years ago I think I could have given you a more enthusiastic answer about that but in the last few years, for the first time in my life, I really haven't listened to much music. I used to work with music on and now I don't.
About
Answer
Could
Enthusiastic
Few
First
First time
Given
I think
Last
Last few years
Life
Listened
More
Falling in Place was meant to be very much rooted in a place and time, and music was a part of that.
Falling
Meant
Meant to be
Much
Music
Part
Place
Rooted
Time
Very
I could name a few songs and say exactly what summer they came out and what boy I thought I was in love with when I was fourteen years old, but I think that music used to be really more a part of the culture when people went out dancing in a different way than they do now.
Boy
Came
Could
Culture
Dancing
Different
Different way
Exactly
Exactly what
Few
Fourteen
I think
Love
More
When I lived in New York, not only did I have safety locks on the door but I had the music going, keeping the city at a distance, trying to find creative time and peace and so forth.
City
Creative
Did
Distance
Door
Find
Forth
Going
Had
Keeping
Lived
Locks
Music
New
Much of what happens in Love Always is really from overheard conversations in the Russian Tea Room. It's an improvisation of the way certain Hollywood agents think and talk to each other.
Agents
Always
Certain
Conversations
Each
Happens
Hollywood
Improvisation
Love
Love always
Much
Other
Really
Room
It's interesting, though, that in daily life, I think of myself as being relatively unobservant.
Being
Daily
Daily life
I think
Interesting
Life
Myself
Relatively
Think
Though
When I was teaching at Harvard in the 1970s, I went to Project Incorporated in Cambridge and took photography classes. I didn't even know how to aim the camera in those days.
Aim
Cambridge
Camera
Classes
Days
Even
Harvard
How
Incorporated
Know
Photography
Project
Teaching
Those
Also minimalism is a term that all of us who share so little in common and who are lumped together as minimalists are not terribly happy with.
Also
Common
Happy
Little
Lumped
Minimalism
Share
Term
Terribly
Together
Us
Who
It's gratifying that it does; I love to give readings.
Does
Give
Gratifying
I love
Love
Readings
It's often been said that I'm an extremely depressing, cynical writer. I've never known what to make of that.
Been
Cynical
Depressing
Extremely
Known
Make
Never
Often
Said
Writer
I think that I'm serious, but I don't think that I'm inordinately bleak.
Bleak
I think
Serious
Think
I think I write about things that are mysterious to me.
About
I think
I write
Me
Mysterious
Things
Think
Write
I don't write about things that I have the answers to or things that are very close to home. It just wouldn't be any adventure. It wouldn't have any vitality.
About
Adventure
Answers
Any
Close
Home
Just
Things
Very
Vitality
Write
Quite often my narrator or protagonist may be a man, but I'm not sure he's the more interesting character, or if the more complex character isn't the woman.
Be a man
Character
Complex
Complex character
He
Interesting
Interesting character
Man
May
More
Narrator
Often
Protagonist
Quite
You have to figure out who the right person is to tell the story. And often, people who are very self-aware will only sound as if they are pontificating if they tell the story.
Figure
Often
Only
Out
People
Person
Right
Right person
Sound
Story
Tell
Very
Who
Will
There is some reason, obviously, that you are drawn to your material, but the way in which you explore it might come to be quite different from what you would expect.
Come
Different
Drawn
Expect
Explore
Material
Might
Obviously
Quite
Reason
Some
Way
Which
Would
Women are obviously much more discriminated against than men in many ways.
Against
Discriminated
Many
Men
More
Much
Obviously
Than
Ways
Women
Women are
I must say also that it's never worked to my disadvantage that I have long, blond hair.
Also
Blond
Disadvantage
Hair
Long
Must
Never
Say
Worked
I like a lot of Margaret Atwood, I like much of Alice Munro. Again, if you were to ask me about male writers, there's often a novel I admire, but not all of their works.
About
Admire
Again
Alice
Ask
Like
Lot
Male
Margaret
Me
Much
Novel
Often
Were

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