Armistead Maupin's novel The Night Listener fictionalized Maupin's mysterious friendship with an HIV-positive boy who may not have existed -- and inspired both a feature film and a 60 Minutes investigation. Published in 2000, the book introduced Maupin to a reading audience that had somehow missed his Tales From the City series, which began as a serial in the San Francisco Chronicle and spawned eight novels, a PBS television series and a musical.
Populated by the hilarious, tortured and thoroughly human inhabitants of 28 Barnaby Lane, Tales of the City is the opus of a warm and observant storyteller with a rich personal history. Born in North Carolina, Maupin worked at a conservative television station run by Jesse Helms and served in the Navy before finding his muse, and his sexual liberation, in California. Celebrated as a literary populist as well as an activist, Maupin continues to blur the lines between gay and mainstream fiction. A new Tales book is due this year.
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Maupin discusses writing and life at the Newman Center for the Arts, 2344 East Iliff Avenue, today at 7:30 p.m. as part of the Denver Post Pen & Podium series. At this writing, tickets, $39 to $52, are sold out. Call 303-871-2270 to join the waiting list.
Mon., Feb. 13, 7:30 p.m., 2012