Bob's Biography


Robert VanDeventer started writing at Duke for Professor William Blackburn, whose students included Mac Hyman, William Styron, Reynolds Price, and Anne Tyler. Robert contributed fiction to the Duke Literary magazine (then edited by fraternity brother George Grune, later CEO of Readers Digest). He wrote a musical comedy for the campus showbiz group, read Keats, and graduated with a bachelor of arts degree. Then, Bob held fiction writing in reserve, as he engaged in a major career in New York, writing speeches and articles for high government officials (including three governors) and a half dozen corporate CEOs. These included Austin Tobin, head of the Port of New York Authority, E. Mandell de Windt, CEO of Eaton Corporation, and T. Lawrence Jones, President of the American Insurance Association.

Bob published one novel in that period, working mostly weekends, MR. AND MS. MARKHAM (New American Library, 1974). It was a success but increasingly responsible positions in New York precluded work on a second novel at that time.

When Bob was finally secure enough to withdraw from the New York scene, he entered, surprisingly, the field of automobiles - especially auto auctions in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. His work as a "designated buyer" at the major auction center in Manheim, Pa, was preserved in print by his friend John McPhee in his book IRONS IN THE FIRE. Later on, Bob used the same experience in the field of automobile auctions in developing the novel now on the market called WHO IS MISTER I?

He also drew on previous experience for THE STORY OF TWENTY QUESTIONS (BearManor Media, 2007). This is a novelized memoir based on both his smiles and tears as a student at Princeton High School in New Jersey, and his most unusual simultaneous duties on radio and television. Through all four years at PHS, Bob went to New York every Saturday night to appear, as Bobby McGuire, on the radio and television program, "Twenty Questions." Later on, he also wrote the questions for two other television quiz shows -- "Dotto" and "Brains and Brawn." This led many years later to association with personalities throughout the radio industry, especially in more recent years with Old Time Radio devotees with their many connections.

Bob has also published two novels with "niche" publishers. One is ORPHAN ANNA ( Publishing, 2007). The other, THE STAR OF THE DUSTY LANE, (Publish America, 2003). The latter work was originally intended as a pathway toward an expose of the publisher, but nothing to expose ever appeared.

Recently on the market is the unusual novel entitled CONS FROM THE ROCK. It's about Alcatraz and how one man really did escape -- with help from a very famous politician, who was murdered soon thereafter. This story has never been told before in print or film.

Bob's latest work just recently joined the market parade. It's THE JANUS IMAGE, which might be looked upon as two adventures in one -- each with its own flavor.

Bob lives in Virginia, where he is hard at work on what he calls "THE BIG ONE."