Our Prince of Scribes
Writers Remember Pat Conroy

Edited by Nicole Seitz and Jonathan Haupt
Foreword by Barbra Streisand
Afterword by Cassandra King Conroy

Illuminating tributes to the literary legacy of Pat Conroy


“Pat Conroy was a force for good in our world. With courage and grace, he brought the gifts of the devastating beauty of his writing and his transcendent vision of the human heart to the lives of the readers he touched and the writers he inspired.”
—Barbra Streisand, from the foreword

“What could be better than so many voices coming together to celebrate Pat Conroy? This book is a testament to the enormous hold he had on our hearts and minds.”
—Ann Patchett

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New York Times best-selling writer Pat Conroy (1945–2016) inspired a worldwide legion of devoted fans numbering in the millions, but none are more loyal to him and more committed to sustaining his literary legacy than the many writers he nurtured over the course of his fifty-year writing life. In sharing their stories of Conroy, his fellow writers honor his memory and advance our shared understanding of his lasting impact on twentieth- and twenty-first-century literary life in and well beyond the American South.

Conroy’s was a messy fellowship of people from all walks of life. His relationships were complicated, and people and places he thought he’d left behind often circled back to him at crucial moments. The pantheon of contributors includes Pulitzer Prize winners Rick Bragg and Kathleen Parker; Grammy winners Barbra Streisand and Janis Ian; Lillian Smith Award winners Anthony Grooms and Mary Hood; National Book Award winner Nikky Finney; James Beard Foundation Award winners Nathalie Dupree and Cynthia Graubart; a corps of New York Times bestselling authors, including Ron Rash, Sandra Brown, and Mary Alice Monroe; Conroy biographers Katherine Clark and Catherine Seltzer; longtime Conroy friends Bernie Schein, Cliff Graubart, John Warley, and Walter Edgar; Conroy’s students Sallie Ann Robinson and Valerie Sayers; members of the Conroy family; and many more.

Each author in this collection shares a slightly different view of Conroy. Through their voices, a vibrant, multifaceted portrait of him comes to life and sheds new light on the writer and the man. Loosely following Conroy’s own chronology, the essays in Our Prince of Scribes wind through his river of a story, stopping at important ports of call. Cities he called home and longed to visit, along with each book he birthed, become characters that are as equally important as the people he touched and loved along the way.

Dottie Ashley • William A. Balk, Jr.
Rick Bragg • Sonny Brewer
Sandra Brown • Jonathan Carroll
Ryder Carroll • Mark Childress
Katherine Clark • John Connor Cleveland
Melissa Conroy • Tim Conroy
Debbi Covington • Nathalie Dupree
Walter Edgar • Stephanie Austin Edwards
Margaret Evans • Nikky Finney
Connie May Fowler • Jonathan Galassi
Judy Goldman • Scott Graber
Cliff Graubart • Cynthia Graubart
Anthony Grooms • Alexia Jones Helsley
Patti Callahan Henry • Mary Hood
Josephine Humphreys • Janis Ian
Terry Kay • John Lane
David Lauderdale • Ellen Malphrus
Andy Marlette • Bren McClain
Teresa Miller • Wendell Minor
Mary Alice Monroe • Michael Morris
Kathy L. Murphy • Michael O’Keefe
Steve Oney • Kathleen Parker
Mark Powell • Ron Rash
Sallie Ann Robinson • Lawrence S. Rowland
Jonathan Sanchez • Alex Sanders
Valerie Sayers • Sean Scapellato
Bernie Schein •Maggie Schein
Nicole Seitz • Lynn Seldon
Catherine Seltzer • Anne Rivers Siddons
George Singleton • William Walsh
John Warley • Ashley Warlick
Teresa K. Weaver • Marjory Wentworth

Royalties from Our Prince of Scribes support the Pat Conroy Literary Center and the Friends of Story River Books.

Published with the generous support of the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame

Page count: 320 pp.
26 b&w images
Trim size: 6 x 9


List price: $29.95

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NICOLE SEITZ is the author of seven novels, including, most recently, The Cage-Maker and Beyond Molasses Creek. She lives in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.

JONATHAN HAUPT is the executive director of the Pat Conroy Literary Center and the founding director of the annual Pat Conroy Literary Festival in Beaufort, South Carolina.