"In his bed one night over on the West Side, suddenly this line came into his head: 'Wehn Yossarian met the chaplain, it was love at first sight.' That's the first line in 'Catch-22.' Five years ago on a bench on a Sunday on Fire Island, this line came into his head: 'In the office where I work there are four people scared of me and I am scared of five.' And into his mind came all of 'Something Happened.'"
Samuel Beckett and John O'Hara have consistently refused to submit to an interview, though most authors have been willing subjects. "The series has gone on now for 25 years, or whatever it is, and is really sort of a pantheon of writers. There they all are, Faulkner, Hemingway, Miller, and Jones. I think that's the only reason I'm invited to parties by writers. They want to be interviewed."
In the next issue the Review will add to its trophy collection an interview with recluse J.D. Salinger, who was unsuspectedly snagged last year near his home in New Hampshire. A girl called Betty Eppes wrote him a girlish letter and said she would wait for him at the mouth of the covered bridge in Windsor, Vt., across the border from Cornish where he lives, for a half hour at 9:30 in the morning. She said the next day she was going back to Baton Rouge.
"I think he thought this was going to be a rather lovely tryst or something and couldn't resist the idea of this girl waiting for him in a sky-blue Pinto. She wore a tape recorder inside her blouse and had a hidden camera. They talked for about 20 minutes and she got this strange interview with him which we're putting in the next issue and calling 'What I Did Last Summer.' The answers are not particularly responsive, but that doesn't make any difference. she actually got the interview, and she's a tennis columnist for the Fun section the Baton Rouge Advocate."