Dean King Interviews Charles Shields


Author Dean King interviewed biographer Charles Shields before a live audience during the concluding session of the 2010 James River Writers Conference in Richmond, VA. With the generous assistance of James River Writers, King, and Shields, we present  a recording of the complete interview for your enjoyment.


James River Writers Conversation with Charles Shields by Dean King

Charles J. Shields is the author of Mockingbird: A Portrait of Harper Lee (Holt, 2006), which was a New York Times bestseller, and recently completed And So It Goes: Kurt Vonnegut, A Life slated for release in November (Holt). He is vice-president of Biographers International Organization, and blogs about his experiences as Vonnegut’s biographer at

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Dean King is a writer of narrative nonfiction, including most recently Unbound: A True Story of Love, War, and Survival (Little, Brown, 2010), and biographer (Patrick O’Brian: A Life Revealed, 2000). He crossed the Sahara on camels and in Land Rovers while researching his national-bestseller Skeletons on the Zahara (2004), which was the subject of a History Chanel documentary and is being developed as a feautre film in London, and he trekked the Long March trail in the remote Snowy Mountains of Western China for Unbound. King’s writing has appeared in Esquire, Men’s Journal, Outside, and the New York Times. He is a co-founder of the James River Writers in Richmond, Virginia.