CHICAGO, Illinois (AP) — Oprah Winfrey said she was “stunned” to learn her father plans to write a book about her. “I was upset. I won’t say devastated, but I was stunned,” Winfrey told New York’s Daily News in a story published Tuesday. Winfrey said she laughed when one of her assistants told her the newspaper was calling to ask about a book her father Vernon Winfrey was writing. “I said, ‘That’s impossible. I can assure them it’s not true,”‘ she said. “… I called him and it turned out he is writing a book. The worst part of it was him saying, ‘I meant to tell you I’ve been working on it.”‘
Winfrey was living with her mother in Milwaukee when she was sent as a young teen to live with her father in Nashville. She previously has credited him for imposing discipline on her and stressing the importance of an education. The Daily News reported that the conversation with Winfrey took place Sunday, when she was in New York to receive the Elie Wiesel Foundation Humanitarian Award.
Reached Tuesday, Michelle McIntyre, a spokeswoman for Winfrey’s Chicago-based Harpo Productions Inc., said: “We’re not going to issue any further comment.” Vernon Winfrey, who owns Winfrey Barber & Beauty Shop in Nashville, had left work Tuesday evening and was not available for comment.
Winfrey told the newspaper she last saw her father when he accompanied her on a trip to Africa a few months ago, but that they often talk and she has a good relationship with him. “I would have preferred to have known my father was working on this. It would have been a nice gesture, a courtesy,” she said. Vernon Winfrey plans to call his book “Things Unspoken,” according to the newspaper.