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A Good Place To Start
|Tales of Ordinary Madness||1|
Charles Bukowski (1920 - 1994)
added by mrblack
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Charles Bukowski was born in Andernach, Germany in 1920 after his mother, a native German, met his father, a Polish American serviceman, during the occupation of Germany at the end of World War I. His family moved to Los Angeles when he was two years old. During the Great Depression, Bukowski's father was often unemployed, and according to Bukowski, verbally and physically abusive. This possibly contributed to Bukowski's isolation and alcoholism. After graduating from Los Angeles High School, Bukowski attended Los Angeles City College for one year, taking courses in art, journalism, and literature.
At 24, Bukowski's short story "Aftermath of a Lengthy Rejection Slip" was published in Story Magazine. Two years later, another short story, "20 Tanks From Kasseldown," was published in Portfolio III's broadside collection. Bukowski grew disillusioned with the publication process and quit writing for almost a decade. He spent this period in Los Angeles, and roaming across the United States, working odd jobs and staying in inexpensive rooming houses. In the early 1950's Bukowski took a temporary job as a letter carrier with the United States Postal Service in Los Angeles, but quit after less than two years. In 1955 he was hospitalized with a bleeding ulcer that was nearly fatal. When he left the hospital, he began to write poetry. He resumed drinking.
He returned to the post office in Los Angeles, where he worked as a clerk for over a decade. In 1965 a daughter, Marina Louise Bukowski, was born to Bukowski and Frances Smith. Smith and Bukowski lived together but were never married. In 1969 Bukowski quit his job at the post office to make writing his full time career, after being promised a monthly stipend of $100 "for life" from Black Sparrow Press publisher John Martin. He was 49 years old. As he explained in a letter at the time, "I have one of two choices--stay in the post office and go crazy...or stay out here and play at writer and starve. I have decided to starve."  Less than one month after leaving the postal service he finished his first novel, titled Post Office. In 1976 Bukowski met Linda Lee Beighle, a health food store owner. Two years later the couple moved from the East Los Angeles area, where Bukowski lived for most of his life, to the port town of San Pedro, at the Southern tip of Los Angeles. Bukowski and Beighle were married in 1985.
Bukowski died on March 9th, 1994 in San Pedro, California at the age of 73, shortly after completing the novel "Pulp", his last. The rites were conducted by Buddhist monks.