Ira Levin, author of ROSEMARY'S BABY, THE STEPFORD WIVES, THE BOYS FROM BRAZIL, A KISS BEFORE DYING, and other bestsellers, is dead at 78.
From a New York Times profile, here's what Mr. Levin had to say about genre vs. literary:
''I don't mind the thriller label at all,'' he says. ''They're the kind of books I enjoy reading. I know I get pretty bored with books and plays that are about a writer's coming of age, or the breakup of a marriage. I mean, we've all been through that. We don't have to go to the theater or pick up a book to have that experience.
''When I was young and starting out,'' he says, ''I thought, 'Well, someday, I'm going to write the great American novel - or several of them.' But as I got older I was perfectly content with suspense, with thrillers. I think they very well may last longer than the more serious types of fiction.
''I think most of the classical novelists who are still popular were the popular writers of their day,'' he adds. ''Certainly Dickens. And I don't know what else was published the year 'Dracula' came out, but what other book from that year has lasted as long?''