The patron saint of literary Brooklyn

Remembering a great writer

Daniela Dragas
4 min readMay 6, 2024
Paul Auster, Public Domain

Paul Benjamin Auster, known as “the patron saint of literary Brooklyn,” according to The New York Times, and “literary Brooklyn’s first great pinup,” according to the Guardian, passed away at the age of 77.

Before Brooklyn became a symbol for aspiring young novelists, Paul Auster claimed it as his own with his breakthrough collection, “The New York Trilogy,” which was first published in 1987.

Interestingly, the trilogy’s main story, “City of Glass,” was rejected 17 times before it finally became a novel in 1985. A prolific writer, Paul averaged a book a year until his last novel ‘’Baumgartner,’’ about an octogenarian author, was published at the end of last year.

Besides novels, Paul wrote non-fiction, translations, poetry and screenplays, showing remarkable versatility, curiosity, ambition and talent.

Paul Auster’s memoirs comprise three notable works. “The Invention of Solitude” (1982) is a reflection on fatherhood after his father’s passing. “Hand to Mouth” (1997) recounts his experiences as a struggling young writer. Lastly, “Winter Journal” (2012) delves into the challenges of aging and physical decline.

During the 1990s, Auster wrote three films: “Smoke,” “Blue in the Face,” and “Lulu on the Bridge.”