The late fashion icon Bill Cunningham left behind a memoir

When legendary street fashion photographer Bill Cunningham died last year, he left behind an incredible trove of photography which, according to Page Six, is worth a cool $1 million in rights. Now, the New York Times has reported that he also left behind the completed manuscript of a memoir, which will be published this September.

“It seems so unexpected,” remarked Christopher Richards, an editor at Penguin Press, in an interview with the Times. “He really didn’t divulge anything about his life to his friends and his colleagues. He was so private. I think it was a shock.”

The memoir will cover his hardscrabble upbringing in a “lace-curtain Irish suburb of Boston,” where he struggled to express his vision to his family. “Bill kept his family life in Boston and his work life in New York very separate,” his niece Trish Simonson told the Times. The narrative then chronicles his eventual rise to fame as New York City’s most prominent and influential street photographer. Along the way, he spent months living off spoonfuls of Ovaltine and gate-crashing exclusive parties as he worked his way to the top.

The memoir will include an introduction from the New Yorker critic Hilton Als.