Gay Talese’s outline for the 1966 classic Frank Sinatra Has a Cold, one of the best long-form magazine pieces ever penned, written on a shirt board.
Still not sure what a shirt board is…
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A video tour of Gay Talese’s writing bunker.
Gore Vidal, in very good company (via Jimmy So).
Frank Sinatra Has a Cold
Frank Sinatra, holding a glass of bourbon in one hand and a cigarette in the other, stood in a dark corner of the bar between two attractive but fading blondes who sat waiting for him to say something. But he said nothing; he had been silent during much of the evening, except now in this private club in Beverly Hills he seemed even more distant, staring out through the smoke and semidarkness into a large room beyond the bar where dozens of young couples sat huddled around small tables or twisted in the center of the floor to the clamorous clang of folk-rock music blaring from the stereo. The two blondes knew, as did Sinatra’s four male friends who stood nearby, that it was a bad idea to force conversation upon him when he was in this mood of sullen silence, a mood that had hardly been uncommon during this first week of November, a month before his fiftieth birthday.
| Esquire | Apr 1966