Dave Itzkoff on Writing a Biography of Robin Williams

Dave Itzkoff has written two autobiographies and two biographies, and in this interview, we talk about his newest book, "Robin," and the ins and outs of researching and writing a biography.

Mignon Fogarty
1-minute read
Episode #735

In this interview, Mignon Fogarty and Dave Itzkoff, New York Times culture writer, author of the book "Robin," and host of the new podcast "Knowing: Robin Williams," talked about:

  • How Dave got the contract to write a book about Robin Williams
  • How Dave dealt with people who were reluctant to be interviewed
  • Which people surprised Dave in interviews
  • How a biographer can find out details about the subject's background and the culture of the time
  • How Robin's upbringing influenced his later life
  • How Dave technologically manages his writing
  • What Dave thinks is the hardest part of writing a biography
  • How the podcast "Knowing: Robin Williams" came to be

You can listen to the entire interview by clicking the player above or by finding the Grammar Girl podcast on any podcasting app, but if you prefer to read it, we also have a complete (rough) transcript.

About the Author

Mignon Fogarty

Mignon Fogarty is the founder of Quick and Dirty Tips and the author of seven books on language, including the New York Times bestseller "Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing." She is an inductee in the Podcasting Hall of Fame, and the show is a five-time winner of Best Education Podcast in the Podcast Awards. She has appeared as a guest expert on the Oprah Winfrey Show and the Today Show. Her popular LinkedIn Learning courses help people write better to communicate better.