Although Irving Wallace published his first article at the
age of 15 and had many articles and short stories published early in his
career, his first book was not
published until 1955 when he was a tender 39 years old. Interestingly, for an
author who became known for his fiction novels, screen plays, and movie
scripts, his first publication The
Fabulous Originals was a nonfiction book.
It would seem that Mr. Wallace had the golden touch from the
get-go as he was offered an impressive $1000.00 advance (for 1954 anyway) from
Alfred A. Knopf. His book was well-received and sold some 12,000 copies in its
Reviewing his work for the purpose of donating his papers to
the Claremont Colleges Library in 1978, Wallace noted, “I was on my way–and doing
what I wanted to more than any other thing in life.” How satisfying it must be
to look back on a prolific career of “best-selling” publications and still know
that there is no other thing in the world you would rather have done or be
As I continue to work through streamlining the Irving
Wallace Papers, I learn more and more about a man who lived an exciting life of
travel, research, and writing. A life I would love to have more than any other
thing in life.
Cheers, Mr. Wallace!
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