Truman Capote’s Early Work Finally Sees the Light of Day

Capote book

I don’t know about y’all but I am TRUly excited that come Tuesday, we’ll be able to get our hands on some of the earliest printed works of one of the East End’s most iconic writers–Truman Capote.

Tru in Sagaponack

Tru at home in Sagaponack.

After the Alabama-born and New York City- and Sagaponack-bred author of “In Cold Blood” and “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” died in 1984, nearly 40 boxes of his papers were donated to the New York Public Library, where they have been stored in the vaults of the Manuscripts and Archives Division on 42nd Street in Manhattan since. Recently unearthed, many of the works, which have never before been published (unless you count Capote’s high school literary journal in Monroeville, AL), have been compiled into “The Early Stories of Truman Capote” and published by Random House. The book contains more than a dozen character-driven short stories set in the rural south, many of which were written in the author’s teens and early 20s and predates his 1948 debut novel, “Other Voices, Other Roomsby several years. New Yorker magazine critic Hilton Als wrote the foreward.


Capote soaks up the sun in Italy.

Based on the advances I’ve read, though it’s clear that the collection contains Capote’s early work, the beginnings of his mature voice still shine through in a number of the pieces that explore what it’s like to be and outsider in mainstream America. Even here, his writings on life outside the margins is heartbreaking and incredibly powerful. “Early Works” is full of tales of injustice, despair and need, but they are told with Capote’s particular brand of wit, wonder and compassion.

I, for one, am planning out racing out to get my copy. Hope to see you at the bookstore!

Memorial marker in the Long Pond Greenbelt.

Memorial marker in the Long Pond Greenbelt.

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