The 10 Grumpiest Authors in Literary History

Norman Mailer

Speaking of Gore Vidal, here’s what fellow grump Norman Mailer had to say to him on The Dick Cavett Show in 1971: “I’ve had to smell your works from time to time and that has made me an expert in intellectual pollution.” That’s separate from the time Mailer punched him at a party. Yipes. Pugnacious as all get-out and smarter than everyone else to boot, you really know you’re at the top of the grumpy old man list when magazines are putting together your All-Time Enemies List and you can only barely count the entrants on both hands.