Tuesday, October 22, 2013

What is Paul Conroy reading?

The current featured contributor at Writers Read: Paul Conroy, author of Under the Wire: Marie Colvin's Final Assignment.

His entry begins:
After the injuries I received in Syria I have been unable to get out and take any meaningful photographs. This has posed me with a dilemma, what to do next with my life?

Conflict reporting may be a tough one to continue with, at least on the very frontline. I never again want anyone to have to stop and have to help me, to put their lives on the line for me and be killed or injured in doing so.

My agents and publishers are convinced I can write, so I have turned to books for inspiration. One book in particular combines all of the traits I look for in a good read, P.J. O'Rourke's, Holidays in Hell. It offers an incredibly open, honest and hilarious insight into the world of journalism which, despite offending some of the more aloof members of the journalistic community, is a world I...[read on]
About Under the Wire, from the publisher:
Zero Dark Thirty meets 127 Hours—a riveting war journal from photographer Paul Conroy, who accompanied Marie Colvin (called by her peers “the greatest war correspondent of her generation”) during her ill-fated final assignment in Syria.

Marie Colvin was an internationally recognized American foreign war correspondent who was killed in a rocket attack in 2012 while reporting on the suffering of civilians inside Syria. She was renowned for her iconic flair and her fearlessness: wearing the pearls that were a gift from Yasser Arafat and her black eye-patch, she reported from places so dangerous no other hard-core correspondent would dare to go. Paul Conroy, who had forged a close bond with Colvin as they put their lives on the line time and time again to report from the world’s conflict zones, was with her when she died. Under the Wire is Paul’s gripping, visceral, and moving account of their friendship and the final year he spent alongside her. When Marie and Paul were smuggled into Syria by rebel forces, they found themselves trapped in one of the most hellish neighborhoods on earth. Fierce barrages of heavy artillery fire rained down on the buildings surrounding them, killing and maiming hundreds of civilians. Marie was killed by a rocket which also blew hole in Paul’s thigh big enough to put his hand through. Bleeding profusely, short of food and water, and in excruciating pain, Paul then endured five days of intense bombardment before being evacuated in a daring escape in which he rode a motorbike through a tunnel, crawled through enemy terrain, and finally scaled a 12-foot-high wall. Astonishingly vivid, heart-stoppingly dramatic and shot through with dark humor, in Under the Wire Paul Conroy shows what it means to a be a war reporter in the 21st century. His is a story of two brave people drawn together by a shared compulsion to bear witness.
Learn more about Under the Wire, and follow Paul Conroy on Twitter.

My Book, The Movie: Under the Wire.

The Page 99 Test: Under the Wire.

Writers Read: Paul Conroy.

--Marshal Zeringue