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Learning to Live Out Loud: A Memoir Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Length: 368 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

Review

In a candid memoir, Emmy- and Golden Globe–winning actress Laurie remembers her long, surprising life as a film, theater and TV star.
An “uncommunicative, silent child” who suffered from acute anxiety disorder, Laurie was inexplicably drawn to the world of stage performance from a young age. After suggesting that she “be in the movies,” her mother entered her in a contest that offered a screen test as first prize. Laurie won the contest but failed the screen test; yet the resolve to persist in following her dream remained strong. Her efforts eventually landed her a contract at Universal Studios when she was just 17.  What she did not know was that “Universal was a picture factory then, specializing in a disposable product for a double feature market,” and that she would be promoted as a glamorous B-movie “bimbo.” Five years later, Laurie began the painful process of speaking for herself and articulating her professional desires. She broke her contract with Universal to take more serious roles on Broadway and in such groundbreaking TV dramas and films as the CBS Playhouse version of Days of Wine and Roses (1958), The Hustler (1961), Carrie (1976) and Twin Peaks (1990-91). Laurie’s openness—about her struggles with shyness and amphetamine addiction and her quietly determined pursuit of artistic fulfillment and sexual freedom—save the book from reading like just another Hollywood career catalog. The self-portrait that emerges is of a gracious woman who was in many ways ahead of her time and who fought “the good fight” on the way to becoming “a part of the speaking world.”
Warmly intimate.
-Kirkus


From the Hardcover edition.

About the Author

PIPER LAURIE (born Rosetta Jacobs) has performed in a hundred films and dozens of plays. She has been nominated three times for an Oscar and received an Emmy and a Golden Globe Award. She was honored as Harvard’s Woman of the Year and with the Spirit of Hope Award for her many trips to entertain the troops in Korea. Her film credits include The Hustler, Carrie, The Grass Harp, Tim, and Children of a Lesser God. She is also well remembered for her dual roles as Catherine Martell and the Japanese businessman in David Lynch’s Twin Peaks. She lives in Los Angeles. 




From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

  • File Size: 7664 KB
  • Print Length: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Archetype (November 1, 2011)
  • Publication Date: November 1, 2011
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004J4WJZM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #707,776 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Piper Laurie has always been one of my favorite character actors and now I learn how she developed into a craftsperson and artist of the highest order. I wondered about her life, who she was, how she came to be "Piper Laurie" and reading her memoir gave me an intimate look into her psyche and the actual events in her life. She has had thus far a wonderful, challenging, spiritual journey and she continues to grow as an artist, moving into adapting written works into short films. She is an inspiration for many of us who have taken side paths away from film and theatre, at times out of choice and at times from necessity. Her description of her time with her daughter as a baby was terrific; I felt like I understood her deep sensitivity, her connectedness to oneness and her joy in life itself through what she revealed in these passages. And her beginnings: insecure, frightened, abandoned to a great degree shaped her strength and power on the screen. She gifted me with a glimpse into a true artist's soul. I can only say, "Thank you, Miss Laurie."
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
She was such a cutie when she started, she had an enviable contract and a routine niche on the cover of "Photoplay" magazine and she made more money every week than my Dad did in a year. Why did she quit? She produced the most admired performance of the 1960's with "Hustler". Why did she retire? I'd always wondered. And then she favored us with this book. It is terrific fun for any movie historian, no matter how amateur, to read answers from her own pen.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Poor Sissy Spacek. Tortured by her God-fearing maniacal mother, in her film debut, Spacek finally kills her by causing a batch of kitchen implements to pin her to the wall.

In her memoir, Piper Laurie describes the process of the implements being sent down a string in slow-motion and how humorous it was. (In the movie it was anything but humorous to me!) As the knives and forks hit her, Miss Laurie has to moan in ecstasy, her longed-for redemption through destruction complete, pinned to the wall like the stations of the cross.

It was inspired casting to put Piper Laurie in this role because it was one that could easily have gone over the top and been completely unconvincing. Miss Laurie did go over the top in this performance, as it was called for in the script, but she found the truth of the character, connected with it, and expressed it to us in a way that scared the crap out of us.

Brian de Palma, the director, made a a shrewd decision to hire a seasoned actress like Miss Laurie for this part. The integrity she brought to the film gave him even more credibility in Hollywood, and made him a very rich man.

What a crowd Miss Laurie hung out with during her career! She knew everybody and everybody knew, and respected, her. She has many interesting stories to tell and she comes across as a genuinely nice person who has overcome the trials of her earlier years.

When it comes to acting, Piper Laurie is one of the few remaining stars from the 50s who rose from the studio system to become a remarkable (and employable) character actress. Her accounts and reminiscences of the roles she played is wonderfully englightening and insightful.

5 Stars! Great read!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Piper Laurie's career has been one of the more unusual in the annals of Hollywood, because, starting as a contract player for Universal in the 1950s, she fought to become a respected actor in the era of live television in the late 1950s, culminating in her acclaimed performance in the film THE HUSTLER (1961); from there, her acting career went on hiatus as she pursued other interests including sculpture; she married and adopted a child. The period from THE HUSTLER to CARRIE (1976) represents one of the longest "interruptions" in any major show business career. Yet once she restarted her career, she continued with many highlights, including her amazing stint working with David Lynch on the series TWIN PEAKS. And now this book recounts her remarkable trajectory with intelligence, humor and great feeling, hallmarks of her acting which shine through in her writing.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This has got to be one of the best auto biographies that I've ever read. And I've read many many bios. First of all, it's got humor, pathos, honesty, and very well written. And I'm afraid that I've fallen in love with her all over again. She just pulls you in to her life. I wanted to send her personal congratulations, but I'm at a loss to make contact with her. Anyway, she looks terrific, and I'm very happy for her success. And I most certainly recommend this book to everyone who enjoys reading bios. Frank Taglieri
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book on the surface is a typical tell-all book about a Holywood movie star from the 1950's onward. There are the numerous love affairs, including one with a future U.S. president, an abortion and the usual starlet roles with scripts that all seem the same. However, half-way through the book, Laurie changes direction and decides to take control of her career, switching from film to television, pursuing good scripts and directors and from time to time, doing some directing herself. She receives acclaim for these roles, particularly Something About Lee Wiley ane the TV version of Days of Wine and Roses. What I hoped to see from this book was the evolution of an actress and that point is realized. The book has a good picture section, but since Laurie was and is a glamourous red-head, it is possible that one may not be able to see her in color in this book, because I don't think Kindle touch technology has reached the color level yet.
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