Nicholson Baker is the author of 18 books of fiction and nonfiction. He has written for The New Yorker, Harper’s, and many other publications. His latest book is Baseless: My Search for Secrets in the Ruins of the Freedom of Information Act.

"In the end, I don’t care how famous you get, how widely read you are during your lifetime. You’re going to be forgotten. And you’re going to have five or six fans in the end. It’s going to be your grandchildren or your great-grandchildren are going to say, Oh, yeah, he was big. … So I think the key is, write what you actually care about. Because in the end, you’re only doing this for yourself. … So maybe do your best stuff for yourself and for the three, four, five people who know in the coming century that you ever existed. That’s all you need to do."

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A journey to the Ukraine to learn from the world's tallest man.

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Leonid S. is eight and a half feet tall, and he is still growing. He is 34 years old, weighs 480 pounds, and he is still growing. He can't fit in a car, wears size 26 EEEEE shoes, can pick apples eleven feet off the ground standing flat-footed, and yes, he is still growing.