Smashing Interviews Magazine

Compelling People — Interesting Lives



June 2010



Larry Grobel Interview: Famous Playboy Interviewer on His Life with Hollywood's Greatest Stars

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Larry Grobel

Lawrence (Larry) Grobel has been a freelance writer for over thirty years and has written for numerous national newspapers and magazines including The New York Times, Newsday, Rolling Stone, Entertainment Weekly, Reader’s Digest, Cosmopolitan, TV Guide, and Penthouse.

Grobel has been a contributing editor at Playboy since 1980 and at Movieline’s Hollywood Life since 1989. Playboy called him “the interviewer’s interviewer” after his interview with Marlon Brando for their 25th anniversary issue.

"I never got Mae West on tape, but fortunately she spoke slowly as I had to write down everything on the tablet."

More recently Grobel has made news as the result of his controversial interviews with Governor Jesse Ventura and former Indiana basketball coach Bob Knight.

Between 1968 and 1971, Grobel taught in the Peace Corps at the Ghana Institute of Journalism in West Africa. His 1985 book, Conversations with Capote, received a PEN Special Achievement award and reached the top of The Village Voice’s bestseller list. In 1981 he received a National Endowment for the Arts grant for fiction.

The celebrated author created the MFA in Professional Writing program for Antioch University in 1977. His books include the aforementioned Conversations with Capote, The Hustons, Conversations with Brando, Talking with Michener, Above the Line, Endangered Species, Montel Williams: Climbing Higher, Al Pacino: In Conversations with Lawrence Grobel, and The Art of the Interview.

Joyce Carol Oates has called Grobel “The Mozart of interviewers” and J.P. Donleavy has called him “The most intelligent interviewer in the United States.” He is currently teaching a seminar on “The Art of the Interview” at UCLA.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Larry, before we speak about your interviews, tell me about your background. You were born in New York?

Larry Grobel: Yes, I was born in Brooklyn and grew up there until I was 9 ½, then we moved to Jericho, Long Island. I spent four years at UCLA and after that joined the Peace Corps, where I went to Ghana, West Africa, and spent three years teaching at the Ghana Institute of Journalism.

Larry Grobel & Al Pacino

Larry Grobel & Al Pacino (Courtesy of Larry Grobel)

When I left the Peace Corps, I spent another year or so traveling throughout Africa, India, and Asia, then came back to the States and began freelancing for newspapers and magazines.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You have two daughters?

Larry Grobel: One daughter just became a doctor and she’s doing her residency at Santa Rosa; the other daughter is a social worker in Santa Monica.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): When you began writing, did you start with interviewing?

Larry Grobel: Not really. I never had interviewing as an ambition, just sort of fell into it. When I came back from Ghana I was writing for Newsday. They had a Sunday magazine section called LI for Long Island. I wrote stories on archery, martial arts, horse racing, and in every story I was involved in each sport or whatever the subject was. It was the kind of writing where you participated and wrote about your experiences.

Then I decided to move to California to work on my fiction, and a friend of mine offered me a part-time position at Antioch College West. My editor at Newsday told me they wanted to do interviews with "household names" and that they’d like to start with Mae West. I asked him how I’d get to her and he said, “You’re the one in Hollywood.”

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): So she was your first interview.

Larry Grobel: Right. I called Paramount Studios where she had worked when she was younger and they gave me her publicist’s number. Mae, in her late 70s at the time, was familiar with Newsday and agreed to see me. I remember that I stopped and bought flowers for her and wore a sports jacket (two things I’ve never done again). Mae was all dressed up (ala Dolly Parton), her hair (wig) was fixed, had high heels on, the whole nine yards.

Luckily, along with my tape recorder, I took my pad to her home because she stared in horror at the recorder and said, "No, I can’t use that.” I was thinking, “Oh no, my first celebrity interview and I can’t use the recorder.” She explained that a reporter once talked to her, recorded her voice, and then released it as a record. I offered to sign something saying I wouldn’t do that, but she wouldn’t budge. So I never got Mae West on tape, but fortunately she spoke slowly as I had to write down everything on the tablet.

The photographer from Newsday came and she posed in front of her piano where a small bust of her was located. My editor called, telling me that the photograph was great and that I should use that same photographer on other pieces. He was all about the photograph. I said, “Damn, what did you think about the interview?” He said, “Oh yeah, that was good, too.”

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): So, who was next?

Larry Grobel: Next I interviewed Linus Pauling who won two Nobel Prizes and author Ray Bradbury. So I started to talk to certain people, but I found that … well, how many artists are household names? That would be Andy Warhol, and that’s about it. Most household names were television and movie stars, so I interviewed Lucille Ball, Jane Fonda, Merv Griffin, Jack Lemmon, Elliot Gould, Louise Lasser, and all the interviews were being published and occasionally one would be on the cover.

I’d talk to people who often didn’t speak to many reporters and would ask 30 or 35 questions each time, but began wondering what it would be like to really talk to them. Newsday only needed 2,500 words and you could do that in about an hour. I wanted something more and the only magazine that was doing a long form was Playboy, so I suggested to my editor I interview Hugh Hefner.

Hefner told me he could give me an hour, so I went to the mansion, and seven hours later he said, “Come back tomorrow.” It wasn’t an easy interview but I had really prepared for it, and Hefner loved it when it was published. His publicist invited me to the Playboy Club in Century City where Hefner would appear as the keynote speaker for all the advertisers at a luncheon. But, Hefner decided not to go that day and instead had the interview reprinted and given to everybody there.

Arthur Kretchmer, Editorial Director of Playboy at the time, was going to be there so I took my interview portfolio. He loved the interview with Hefner and I told him I could do that at Playboy. He gave me a contact name and I explained to him who I had interviewed and that I had been trying to get an interview with Barbra Streisand. He said, “Well, if you can get to Streisand we’d be interested because we’ve been trying to get to her for years.”

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): There was your chance to write for Playboy.

Larry Grobel: I called Streisand’s publicist again and told him that if she talks to me, Playboy reaches about 6 million people in the United States and has about 20 foreign editions. I could also put a piece of the interview in Newsday that was syndicated to go into 350 magazine sections around the country. Barbra would only need to do one interview with me and it would saturate the world.

After a couple of months I got a phone call saying that Barbra Streisand would like to meet me. I didn’t know what to expect, but went to the studio, and after about 20 minutes Streisand appeared with an entourage of about five people. She came right up to my face, almost nose to nose, and asked, “Why does the press hate me?” Well, I started listing all of the reasons because she had kept me waiting, I had been trying for months to get her, and was pretty fed up with the whole thing.

As I’m talking to Barbra and listing all the reasons why the press hates her, the people with her began to gasp. They couldn’t believe I was talking to her that way. I mean, this was 1976 … she was the queen at that time and had been at the studio editing the music for A Star is Born. We sat in the screening room together and watched the film. I was nervous about it because I felt that if I didn’t like it she could tell by the look on my face. When it was over with, she said, “Well?” I couldn’t think of what to say because I didn’t care for it so I just said, “You’re going to make a lot of money.” That was apparently enough.

Barbra told me I should contact her publicist to arrange the interview, but I told her, “No, if you want to do this, give me your phone number.” She went over to a yellow pad and wrote a small "B" in the corner of it with her phone number. She ripped off that little edge and handed it to me. I called her soon after and that was the beginning of a 9-month marathon with her. We talked at her homes, I drove her to appointments, or we’d talk on the telephone.

Every time I saw Barbra it sometimes took half an hour to get her to trust me to continue the interview. So, I told her that I wouldn’t give Playboy any copy until both of us agreed we were finished. Barbra was a perfectionist and everything mattered to her; a piece of art, a movie, and music were all the same and she gave equal attention to all of them.

Barbra was the first star to be seen on the cover of Playboy and Playboy realized I was willing to work for nothing because they didn’t pay me during the nine months I interviewed her.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine) That led to Brando?

Larry Grobel: I had only done three or four interviews for them, but when Brando agreed to an interview they asked me to do it.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You interviewed him on the island.

Larry Grobel: Yes, I went to his island … and I’m still dealing with that island trip. I recently wrote a screenplay based on it and that’s been turned over to a production company. It actually may turn into a movie one day. Bloomsbury Publishing in England asked me to put it in book form, then Hyperion came aboard, and it has now been republished in many languages. I’ve been rewriting it and adding to it over the years.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Would you consider the Brando interview the one you were most pleased with?

Larry Grobel: I think it’s probably the interview that I’m most known for, but the Jesse Ventura and Bob Knight interviews were the two that may have given me the most publicity.

Jesse Ventura was the governor of Minnesota then. We talked about everything he had talked about before, but for some reason, I got him to say things in one interview that he may have said pieces of in other places. It was just never put together quite like it was in my interview.

The week before it came out, I got phone calls at 6:30 in the morning from The Today Show, CNN, Geraldo, The Joan Rivers Show … all were asking me to verify a quote. They said, “In the interview with Jesse Ventura, did he really say that he’d like to come back as a 38 double-D bra and did he really say religion is for weak minded people?” I asked them how they got the interview and they replied that it had been released by the Associated Press.

Thirty minutes after I received all of these calls, the news trucks started rolling up to my house. Now, I live in a canyon in the Hollywood Hills, which is a narrow canyon, and there were about six TV vans coming from every station to talk to me about this interview. The next morning I led off the first 15 minutes of The Today Show. Newsweek put Jesse Ventura on the cover, but the interview hurt him in a way. He had a positive rating of 71% before the interview and 49% after the interview, so in a sense, I may have been responsible for why he never ran again. We liked each other, though. He said, “Larry, that was exactly what I said. You certainly didn’t put words in my mouth.”

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): That was nice of him to tell you that.

Larry Grobel: Yes, I thought it was. The other one was the Bob Knight (Indiana Hoosiers coach at the time) interview. When he got fired, we used every connection we had to get him. He agreed to the interview and I flew to Indiana. He asked me to go with him to see his son at Ohio State. When I asked him how far that was he replied, “It’s a six-hour ride and we’ll go in my car.” He also told me we’d come back that night so that would be twelve hours in the car with him.

You know, I had some tough questions for him because he had a reputation for throwing people around. He got angry at my questions. But, it’s all there in my book, The Art of the Interview, so I won’t go into it here. I call it, “On the Road With the Angriest Man in America.” He was and that was quite an experience. Every radio show in America wanted me to talk about it and Playboy actually hired me for a couple of weeks to talk to the press.

I’m fond of different interviews for different reasons. I loved being with Pavarotti because he was just great to be with. I traveled to Chicago, San Francisco, and New York with him and we would stay on the same hotel floor together.

It was the same with Dolly Parton. I went to West Virginia and traveled all over on the bus with her. Sometimes we talked up to 3:00 in the morning.

Larry Grobel & Snoopy

Larry Grobel in a casual moment with Peanuts statue in Santa Rosa, CA (Courtesy of Larry Grobel)

Some of these interviews were extraordinary and will never happen again. Times have changed. But, I was very fortunate to have gone through a period of really delving into people’s lives.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Is there an interview that comes to mind that you’d say didn’t exactly turn out the way you hoped it would?

Larry Grobel: I ended up walking out on Robert Mitchum and not doing the interview. Fred Astaire, Alfred Hitchcock, and Leonard Bernstein all agreed to see me but cancelled at the last minute.

Hitchcock was told to stay away from me because I might be too tough. I was told that later by someone who advised him and I thought that was kind of lousy.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): So you never got back with the three of them?

Larry Grobel: I never did. I had already bought the plane ticket to Germany to interview Bernstein. I wrote a nasty note to him when he cancelled. With Astaire, his wife told him he shouldn’t do Playboy.

When I was in New York, an interview was arranged with Sophia Loren, but they told me I could only have 6 hours because she was leaving for Italy in three days. I told them I couldn’t do an interview in six hours. Now I can do an interview in an hour. The article I have in American Way with Jake Gyllenhaal is about how I did his interview in twenty minutes (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Times have changed for feature interviews, haven’t they? Usually if a celebrity has nothing to promote, the publicist will not arrange the interview.

Larry Grobel: American Way is doing a nice job on my pieces, but they only want 2,000 words. Even people that I think would be interesting right now, we can't get until they are promoting something. They have bought into that way too much. People are interesting whether or not they have something coming up.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Right, but that’s the way it is now.

Larry Grobel: You know, the publicist really hurts the business. Then the Internet has hurt a great deal; people have their own sites with blogging so they can say whatever they want. The idea of doing an in-depth interview like the way I’m trained to do and have done over the years is … I haven’t done them in a really long time.

I was telling my wife, “You know, it’s like I developed a talent where I really feel good about doing what I do and there’s no place to do it anymore.” Yet, I’m teaching the art of the interview at UCLA, instructing them on in-depth interviews because I keep thinking they’ll come back (laughs). You can always do shorter ones, but if you’re only prepared for the sensational and the sound bites rather than the interview, it’s not good enough.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Some people are still hung up on “online only” magazines also. But, print is dying.

Larry Grobel: That’s what is happening unfortunately. I write for World Magazine out of New Zealand and am always asked before the interview about the circulation. It’s the same for online, people want to know how many “hits” you get on your site versus other sites.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Who was the last person you interviewed?

Larry Grobel: Well, Jake Gyllenhaal actually – he’s on the cover of American Way. I did a nice piece called 20 Minutes with the Prince of Persia. That’s the most current.

Then I have something with Ron Masak who portrayed the sheriff on Murder She Wrote. That hasn’t come out yet. I did Anthony Hopkins also for American Way a couple of months ago.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You had interviewed Hopkins before.

Larry Grobel: Yeah, I interviewed him three or four times. I did him for Playboy, Autograph Magazine, and Movieline.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): I read an excerpt of the Playboy interview. Your question was: “In Proof, you play a mathematical genius who has lost his mind in the last years of his life. What was the most challenging aspect of this character?” Hopkins answered: “Nothing really. It was a job like anything else.”

How do you quickly move on from a nondescript answer like that?

Larry Grobel: Hopkins can be a problem, but he also gave me one of the best interviews I ever had. That’s in my book, Above the Line. The Playboy interview is very interesting because he was cynical about his profession. He kept saying actors are nothing, acting is nothing, and nobody cares about Shakespeare. He said these outrageous things so that was great copy.

Then he got involved in AA, began to calm down, and promised he wouldn’t say anything crazy, so he became duller. In that last interview, his wife kept calling and telling me not to use this or that … just yelling at me. Hopkins was promoting Wolfman and made the mistake of telling me the ending. When he finished he said, “Guess I shouldn’t have said that.” I said, “Don’t worry, I won’t use it.” I suppose he didn’t want to take my word for it because he had his wife phone me to make sure that didn’t go in print.

Actors are very paranoid people for the most part. They really want control and many have inferiority complexes about their intelligence quotients. Some are pretty smart people, but have insecurities. They are the ones that we love … the Robert Deniros, the Al Pacinos.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Speaking of Al Pacino, he was very distrustful of you in the beginning.

Larry Grobel: He’s distrustful of me still today (laughs).

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Did you have to spend much time with him or form a friendship before he would open up to you?

Larry Grobel: Two thousand pages worth – that was the length of the transcription. He was making Cruising in New York, then …And Justice for All was about to come out. I had to quickly prepare for that one. I got the call to do the interview on a Tuesday telling me I had to be in New York on Thursday. The one day I would have on Wednesday to research, the library would be closed. This was before the Internet came into being. But, they told me he’d only do the interview with the guy who did Brando – Pacino loved that interview and carried it around with him all of the time. So, Playboy agreed to more money and off I flew to New York.

The first time I saw Pacino was actually at a screening for …And Justice for All in a movie theater. He was seated in front of me so all I saw was the back of his head the entire time. I met him the next day; he was nervous and very wary about the whole process. But, he had never really been interviewed before so that was interesting.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You also interviewed Norman Mailer. I recently spoke with his last wife (Norris Church Mailer) who has just written her memoir, A Ticket to the Circus. Did Mailer ever tell you why he couldn’t be faithful to one woman?

Larry Grobel: No, I never asked him that. Did Norris talk about it?

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Yes. Her answer was that he was just that way.

Larry Grobel: Hey, I accept that … why not? It’s like Tiger Woods, he likes sex and it’s available.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): You’ve made some close friends from many interviews. What happens when you go to interview someone you’ve formed a friendship with?

Larry Grobel: It’s much harder. I don’t like it. First of all, if I have an assignment to interview someone I’m friends with I have to inform the editor that they may not get the dirt or gossip they are looking for. On the other hand, what they’re going to get is something you won’t get from anybody else … the person will be relaxed with me.

Then if you write something your friend doesn't like, that is a problem. So I really try not to write much about the people that I know well.

Pacino is really the only exception to that rule. He’s the one I got to know sort of like a brother. But, for some reason, the journalist part of me and the actor part in him remained because as soon as I brought out the tape recorder we became adversaries in a certain way. He could fuck around with me and be playful and I could say what I wanted to say … and it would always be entertaining.

In my book, Al Pacino: In Conversation with Lawrence Grobel, you really get to see the evolution of the relationship. The questions I’m asking him in 1978 about The Godfather and Michael Corleone are different from the same questions I asked him in 1983 and 1990. So when he’s discussing his thoughts on Corleone, he’s not giving me the same answers each time. You’re seeing how things have developed in his mind and have changed over the years. You can see he’s a little more sarcastic here, a bit more loving here. It just changed into two friends talking intimately.

There’s a point in the book where he asks, “Do you trust me with your life?” I answered, “Do you trust me with yours?” That’s the kind of question you’re not going to get when you do an interview on the phone or when you talk to the same person for the first, second, or third times. But, if it was 20 years later you might get that sort of thing. That is what makes it unique.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Do you teach your students the difference between a telephone interview and an in-person interview?

Larry Grobel: Well, you’re not looking in my eyes right now; you don’t know how I’m dressed, I could be laying here naked for all you know. You can’t describe that, you can’t tell about the setting we’re in; if we’re speaking in my home or in a restaurant. You cannot see my body language. The eyes are very revealing just as they are in the movies. When they advertise Pacino’s movies, there is a poster of just his face because his eyes tell all.

On the phone, all you have is my voice and that voice could be of a 30 year old or a 50 year old. I’ve never been fond of the phone interview unless it’s the second or third time you’ve talked to the person.

I interviewed Warren Beatty in person, but wanted to continue it so he gave me his phone number. That was good except when I asked him a question about taxes. I said, “I understand you had a problem with the IRS 7 years ago.” He said, “Oh Larry, can I call you back … got another call coming in.” I discovered that it’s not sex or religion people were hesitant to discuss, it was money.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Have you ever interviewed Clint Eastwood?

Larry Grobel: I turned down an interview with Eastwood once for Playboy. I look back on that now and say, “Wow, stupid.” But, that was before he was a director. I had just read an interview with him in The New York Sunday Times and he sounded very conservative, just didn’t sound like someone I would care to speak with. Then, look at what he became.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Yes, and he just turned 80.

Larry Grobel: Eastwood is a great icon and I’m sorry I didn’t do the interview. I met him once at a Mike Tyson fight at the Playboy Mansion. I think it was the Sphinx bout that lasted all of 90 seconds (laughs). It was the biggest crowd of celebrities I had ever seen at the mansion and there was to be a party afterwards. But the fight ended so quickly people just left, not knowing what else to do.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): What has been the most fascinating piece of information you’ve ever found out in an interview?

Larry Grobel: That I could or couldn’t use?

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): That you could use.

Larry Grobel: Off the top of my head, it could be when Dolly Parton told me she had sex with one of her uncles (a few years older than her at the time) in the barn. Those kinds of things make you go “Whoa!”

James Garner once told me about his stepmother who used to beat them. She would punish him by making him wear a dress in public, like going to the store or something like that. So he was always humiliated in an ugly way. One day he attacked his stepmother, had her by the throat, and was choking her. If his father or brother hadn’t pulled James off of her, he would have killed her.

I was speaking to Freddie Prinze in his bedroom and noticed the empty bookshelves. I said, “Where are all of your books?” He said, “I don’t read.” I told him that I collected first editions and he didn’t know what that was, so I asked him if he collected anything. He answered, “Comic books and cartoon videos.” This person was basically illiterate, but yet lived in a larger home and drove a much nicer car than me.

Charlie Sheen and I were speaking at his home in Malibu when, all of a sudden, he told me to turn off the recorder. Then he said, “Listen, I don’t know how to handle or talk about the gun incident.” I thought, “What in the world is he talking about?” I hadn’t heard about the incident, so I just had to wing it. I said, “Charlie, I will just ask you the most general question and you can say whatever you want to say and that will be it for the record.” He agreed, so I turned the recorder on, and said, “Charlie, tell me about the incident with the gun.” He told me about how the gun dropped out of his pants and hit the toilet, shrapnel hit his girlfriend, and she had to get stitches. That was quite an unexpected story.

Then when I was writing about the Huston family, I found out something about Angelica, Tony, and Danny that did not go in my book. If I had added it, the book would have become more sensational than anything I had previously written. But, out of respect for John, and the fact that he had opened up his entire life to me, I did not publish the information.

I spoke to Nancy Reagan, Ava Gardner, Lillian Gish, Paul Newman … people who never talked to anyone … because John Huston told them to talk to me. So I just didn’t have the heart to publish certain things that would’ve hurt the family. I’m not telling the story here either, but I’m just saying there are things that occasionally happen or information is uncovered that is not necessary to use. That may be the only time it has ever happened to me.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): I read your Truman Capote interview. The fact that he hates most writers was quite interesting.

Larry Grobel: Yeah (laughs). He was a character. Conversations with Capote was my first book and it became a best seller. It was sensational because Capote was a gossipy character and had a big following of readers.

An actor friend of mine, Richard Cox, who appeared in Cruising with Al Pacino, knew Jane Pauley. So, before I appeared on The Today Show, Richard told me to tell Jane hello. You know, sometimes that works and sometimes it doesn’t. A friend of mine once asked me to do that with Sharon Stone and she hated the guy. It’s a chance you take.

Anyway, this was my first national television appearance and I was nervous. I read and reread my notes ((I’ve never studied beforehand since). Capote had said many negative things about prominent people – how would I talk about that on national TV?

They put the mike on me and Jane said, “I’d like to ask you about his hate list, the 2,000 people that were on it … and we can go from there.” I went nuts! I didn’t know how I was going to handle that! So I said to her, “Richard Cox says hello.” She said, “Oh, I love Richard!” Then I said, “Jane, why don’t you just ask me how I first met him.” A few seconds later we were on the air and Jane said, “Tell me, Larry, how did you first meet Truman Capote?” I wanted to kiss this woman! If she had gone with the hate list thing first, I’m not sure what I would have said. This way I could just ease my way into it and that was much better. Capote was a great character because he didn’t care what he said.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Absolutely. Larry, will you be writing more books?

Larry Grobel: I have a memoir that’s ready to go. I wrote a book on the making of Al Pacino’s film, Salome (based on Oscar Wilde’s tragedy). Al asked me to appear in the movie so I went all over Europe with him, basically following Wilde’s footsteps. I have the manuscript ready to go as soon as the movie is released.

I have a novel that I call Catch a Fallen Star. It was published in Poland with a Polish title and I can’t read a word of it. But I went to Poland to attend book signings and that was great. I can’t get an agent in America to look at it because I’m basically associated with non-fiction.

I’ve written a funny satire on yoga, and a book of poetry about all of the celebrities I’ve met over the years called Madonna Paints a Mustache. I’m also working on another novel at the moment.

It’s frustrating because I’m at a point now where I’m beginning to really wonder about the publishing world and my place in it. I’ve published 10 non-fiction books and a novel (in Polish) and it’s very hard to find what to do. Things have changed so dramatically.

Melissa Parker (Smashing Interviews Magazine): Thanks Larry, you are a great interview.

Larry Grobel: It’s easy talking to me, right? When people come to interview me they are nervous to interview the interviewer … and I always laugh at that. They have an easy assignment because I’m willing to talk about anything. I know what it’s like to want to get something out of an interview, so I try to at least be open.

Photo Credits: Front slider photo courtesy of Larry Grobel

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