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William Derry Eastlake Edit Profile

novelist , screenwriter , Film director

William Derry Eastlake was an American writer, who gained prominence as the author of numerous short stories, poems, and novels.


William Derry was born on July 14, 1917 in Brooklyn, New York, United States. He was the son of Gordon and Charlotte (Bradley) Eastlake.


From 1948 till 1950 Eastlake studied at Alliance Française in Paris, France. In 1970 William got Doctor of Laws degree graduating from University of Albuquerque.


In the early 1940s Eastlake worked at the Stanley Rose Bookstore in Los Angeles, California, United States. William also held the post of a reporter, covering the story of a lynching in Mississippi, where he visited writer William Faulkner.

In 1942, Eastlake joined the U.S. Army, and was stationed at Camp MacArthur and Camp Ord in California, followed by Camp White in Oregon. After the Pearl Harbor Attack, all Japanese draftees in the U.S. Army were sent to Camp Ord, where Eastlake was given the job of "looking after them".

Later Eastlake was transferred to a reinforcement company in England, where his job was "to process and instruct" newly arrived troops, including acclimatizing them to British customs. His outfit then landed at Omaha Beach, after which he fought in France and Belgium, and was a platoon leader when wounded in the right shoulder in the 1944 Battle of the Bulge, receiving a steel plate that hampered movement of his arm. After the war ended, Eastlake accepted an invitation to join an army buddy in Switzerland and start a small literary magazine.

Eastlake also lectured at universities in the 1960s and 1970s, including at the University of Southern California, U.S. Military Academy, University of New Mexico, and the University of Arizona.

Eastlake's 1965 book Castle Keep was made into the 1969 movie Castle Keep.


  • His Checkerboard Trilogy, consisting of the works "Go in Beauty", "The Bronc People", and "Portrait of an Artist with Twenty-Six Horses" was included by literary critic Larry McCaffery in his list of the 20th Century's Greatest Hits: 100 English-Language Books of Fiction.


  • Writers Guild of America , United States

  • Author's Guild , United States

  • PEN International , United Kingdom

  • American Association of University Professors , United States


Gordon Eastlake

Charlotte (Bradley) Eastlake