Liz Smith, the "longtime queen of New York's tabloid gossip columns, who for more than three decades chronicled triumphs and trespasses in the soap-opera lives of the rich, the famous and the merely beautiful," died November 12, the New York Times reported. She was 94. Her column, "Liz Smith," ran in the Daily News from 1976-1991; New York Newsday from 1991-1995; Newsday until 2005; and in the New York Post from 1995-2009--"a 33-year run that morphed onto the Internet in the New York Social Diary." The column was also syndicated for years in 60 to 70 other newspapers, and she wrote magazine articles and books.
In 2005, she published a book of reminiscences and recipes, Dishing: Great Dish--and Dishes--From America's Most Beloved Gossip Columnist, "a serving of celebrities garnished with favorite foods," the Times noted. Natural Blonde, her 2000 memoir, was a bestseller.
Yesterday, New York City's the Strand bookstore posted on Facebook: " 'Frankly, if I hadn't had the Strand in my life, I couldn't have worked effectively for the past 45 years.'--Liz Smith. Our thoughts go out to the friends and family of fiercely loyal patron and dear friend of Strand owner Fred Bass, Liz Smith. #rip."
Gilbert Rogin, "who had an enviable run as a writer of droll short fiction for the New Yorker while building toward an impressive career as a top editor at Sports Illustrated and other magazines," died on November 4, the New York Times reported. He was 87.
The New Yorker published more than 30 of his stories beginning in 1963, and he had written several well-received books, but "in 1980 Roger Angell, the magazine's fiction editor, rejected one of his submissions on the grounds--as Mr. Rogin later told the tale--that he was repeating himself. He stopped writing fiction entirely," the Times noted. Rogin's first book, a story collection titled The Fencing Master, was published in 1965, followed by the novels What Happens Next? (1971) and Preparations for the Ascent (1980).