Tom Hanks loves to type. His new book, "Uncommon Type: Stories," is a collection of stories in which a typewriter makes a cameo in every one.
Hanks, who owns more than 250 typewriters, will portray late Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee in "The Post," co-starring Meryl Streep (opening Jan. 12 in the Twin Cities).
He also appeared in the 2017 documentary "California Typewriter."
He answered a few questions via e-mail about his book, his typewriters and his gift of a brand-new coffeemaker to the White House press corps.
Q: When did you start writing "Uncommon Type," and when did you write?
A: I worked over the course of the years since November of 2014. My schedule is not set, but the mornings were times I wrote. But when I was shooting a movie, I wrote anytime and everywhere.
Q: Where did the stories come from?
A: I started most stories with each title, seeing the characters and a theme to explore. Or, just a single moment in each story that became part of the whole chain.
Q: There's a story in the book called "Christmas Eve 1953," about a family's traditions on that night, including an annual phone call between the protagonist, Virgil, and one of his Army buddies. What is Christmas Eve like for you?
A: Christmas Eve has always shifted. With kids in the house, there is the visit of Santa leaving one unwrapped gift for the morning. We've always altered the routine.
Q: Do you have a favorite typewriter?
A: My favorite is always changing. Any Smith-Corona Sterling or Silent is a gem. Any Hermes, either the green or tan, all work like lightning. I have a thing for my Olivetti Lettera 22's, as they are masterpieces of design, the action is crazy fast and light, and the typewriter is in the Museum of Modern Art.
Q: You put a coffee machine in the White House pressroom, and you are playing Ben Bradlee. Where do you get your news, and why a coffeemaker?
A: I read the N.Y. Times and listen to NPR all day. When I can, I catch "The 11th Hour with Brian Williams" on MSNBC to get the perspective on the crazy day.
I put an espresso machine into the pressroom of the White House because they had the saddest little coffee machine I'd ever seen.