Born in Washington D.C. and raised in North Carolina, Armistead Maupin has long been considered an adopted son of San Francisco, the setting for his best-known fictional series Tales of the City.
After serving as a naval officer, Maupin worked as a reporter, moving to San Francisco in 1971 and beginning his Tales of the City series in 1976. Introducing a diverse cast of characters from transgender matriarch Anna Madrigal to the idealistic, gay romantic Michael “Mouse” Tulliver, the novels became a huge global success and to date have sold more than six million copies worldwide.
Published from 1978, Tales of the City spans the late twentieth century, concluding with The Days of Anna Madrigal which was published in 2017. A ground breaking work of LBGT+ fiction, the series – which moves from the free-love excesses of the late 1970’s through to the present day, representing experiences across the sexual spectrum - was amongst the first works of fiction to tackle the AIDS epidemic and offer positive portrayals of gay, bisexual and transgender lives.
Reflecting on the profound impact those closest to him have had on his life, Tales of the City author Armistead Maupin shares his candid search for his "logical family," the people he could call his own.
From his loving relationship with his palm-reading Grannie - who insisted Maupin was the reincarnation of her artistic bachelor cousin, Curtis - to an awkward conversation about girls with President Richard Nixon in the Oval Office, Maupin tells of the extraordinary individuals and situations that shaped him into one of the most influential writers of the last century. Recalling a life of losses and life changing experiences, Maupin’s characteristic humour and unflinching honesty brings to life flesh-and-blood characters as endearing and unforgettable as the vivid, fraught men and women who populate his enchanting novels.