Academy Award-winning actor Tom Hanks will publish a collection of short stories with Alfred A. Knopf. The collection, titled UNCOMMON TYPE: Some Stories is set to be released in October in hardcover and ebook, and as an audiobook read by Hanks from Random House audio.
UNCOMMON TYPE is Hanks’ first published volume. The actor began working on the book back in 2015, squeezing in time to write between film sets and press tours. “I made movies in New York, Berlin, Budapest, and Atlanta and wrote in all of them,” said Hanks. “I wrote in hotels during press tours. I wrote on vacation. I wrote on planes, at home, and in the office. When I could actually make a schedule, and keep to it, I wrote in the mornings from nine to one.”
In 2014, Hanks published the short story “Alan Bean Plus Four” in The New Yorker. It received mixed reviews, with Vulture calling it “short, sweet and pretty much perfect,” but Slate calling it mediocre and tired. The story nonetheless caught the eye of Sonny Mehta, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Knopf. Mehta said he first became interested in Hanks’ writing after reading the story, and said he was, “struck by both his remarkable voice and command as a writer.”
Now, we’ll have 17 short stories from Hanks in UNCOMMON TYPE. All the stories focus in some way around different typewriters (Hanks is apparently an avid vintage typewriter enthusiast, owning more than 100 of them). The stories feature a variety of protagonists, including an immigrant moving to NYC, a professional bowler, an “eccentric billionaire and his faithful executive assistant,” and an actor living in luxury. Mehta finds the collection quite accomplished, and states he is “thrilled by the narrative range on display in this collection, and by the humor and humanity Tom brings to his work.”
See the cover art for UNCOMMON TYPE below—you can preorder a copy here.