Chad Harbach

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Chad Harbach
Chad harbach 2011.jpg
Chad Harbach at the 2011 Texas Book Festival.
Occupation Editor, writer
Nationality American
Alma mater Harvard University
University of Virginia

Chad Harbach (born 1975[1]) is an American writer. An editor at the journal n + 1, he is the author of the 2011 novel The Art of Fielding.

Early life and education[edit]

Harbach grew up in Racine, Wisconsin. His father was an accountant and his mother the head of a Montessori school.[2] Harbach graduated from Harvard University, where he became friendly with fellow writers and journalists Keith Gessen and Benjamin Kunkel.[3] He received an MFA from the University of Virginia.[4]

n + 1[edit]

In 2004, Mark Greif, Gessen, Harbach, Kunkel, and Marco Roth launched the literary journal n + 1;[5] Harbach had come up with the name as early as 1998.[6] Harbach is both an editor and writer for the journal, contributing essays on environmentalism, David Foster Wallace, and the Boston Red Sox.[7]

The Art of Fielding[edit]

Harbach worked on his novel The Art of Fielding for nine years.[8] The novel, set at Westish College, a small school on the shore of Lake Michigan, tells the story of the gifted young shortstop Henry Skrimshander, whose errant throw upends the lives of five people. In high school, Harbach had played baseball, along with golf and basketball; in March 2010, he told Bloomberg News, “What fascinates me about baseball is that although it’s a team game, and a team becomes a kind of family, the players on the field are each very much alone. Your teammates depend on you and support you, but at the moments that count they can’t bail you out.”[9]

After a heated auction ($665,000),[10] the book was acquired and published by Little, Brown in the fall of 2011. A Vanity Fair e-book describing the writing and publication of the novel was later released. The Art of Fielding was met with extraordinary critical praise. In the New York Times, Michiko Kakutani wrote, "'The Art of Fielding' is not only a wonderful baseball novel—it zooms immediately into the pantheon of classics, alongside “The Natural” by Bernard Malamud and “The Southpaw” by Mark Harris—but it’s also a magical, melancholy story about friendship and coming of age that marks the debut of an immensely talented writer."

MFA vs NYC[edit]

Harbach edited a book about two American writing cultures, released in February 2014. The book was based on Harbach's widely read essay "MFA vs NYC," and featured essays by n+1 contributors such as Elif Batuman and Keith Gessen, as well as the novelist George Saunders. The Times's Dwight Garner described it as a "serious, helpful and wily book."

Awards and recognition[edit]

Controversy[edit]

In September, 2017, writer Charles C. Green sued Chad Harbach claiming "large-scale misappropriation" by Harbach. The suit noted a very strong plot and style resemblance between The Art of Fielding and Green's previously completed screenplay, Bucky's 9th. [11][12]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.themodernnovel.org/americas/other-americas/usa/harbach/
  2. ^ Philip Boroff, "Unemployed Harvard Man Auctions Baseball Novel for $650,000," Bloomberg.com, March 31, 2010.
  3. ^ Gessen, "How a Book is Born."
  4. ^ Boroff, "Harvard Man Auctions Baseball Novel," Bloomberg.com
  5. ^ Susan Hodara, "Intellectual Entrepreneurs: A highbrow journal rises in an era of sound bites," Harvard Magazine, January–February, 2010.
  6. ^ A.O. Scott, "Among the Believers," The New York Times Magazine," September 11, 2005.
  7. ^ n + 1 Archive Chad Harbach
  8. ^ Boroff, "Harvard Man Auctions Baseball Novel," Bloomberg.com
  9. ^ Boroff, "Harvard Man Auctions Baseball Novel," Bloomberg.com
  10. ^ Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung 23.01.2012
  11. ^ Hamilton, B. Colby. "Author of 'The Art of Fielding' Accused of Pilfering Plot Points". New York Law Journal. 
  12. ^ Stempel, Jonathan. "Author of 'The Art of Fielding' committed an error, rival says in lawsuit". 

External links[edit]