Saturday, December 26, 2009

Close-up of the M*A*S*H book co-author

From the Norwich Bulletin (Dec 25th, reported by Deborah Straszheim), in part:

Lisbon, Conn. — In the news: Mark O’Neill, 44, of Preston, has co-authored the book “TV’s M*A*S*H:* The Ultimate Guide Book” with Ed Solomonson. It was published by Bearmanor Media and has a foreword written by the creator of the show, Larry Gelbart. The book is available on and the Bearmanor Web site.....Background: O’Neill works at Walmart, in Lisbon. He received his bachelor’s degree in communications from Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. He has written humor columns as well as illustrated cartoons, including Potluck Parish, which was distributed by United Features Syndicate from 2000 to 2003. Potluck Parish featured a Catholic priest and was created to be a humorous slice of life. O’Neill currently helps Gary Burghoff, who played Radar on M*A*S*H*, by illustrating his comic strip, The Home.

About the book: O’Neill spent 10 years on the book, which includes interviews with actors, guest stars, people who worked on the production, trivia and episode guides. O’Neill conducted the interviews and organized each chapter. Solomonson dissected the episodes. The teamwork, said O’Neill, paid off — the book has been given positive reviews on O’Neill said this is the first comprehensive book on M*A*S*H*. At 830 pages, it gets to all the nitty-gritty of the show, he said. “As a fan, this is the best book ever done on the show,” said O’Neill.

Quotable: “The lines were so funny,” O’Neill said of the early M*A*S*H* shows. “It was so funny but so natural. It didn’t seem forced. It was so believable, and that’s what I took to.”

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