Mailer's interview with Robert Begiebing (83.10), one of his three or four most important interviews, is published in Harvard Magazine. In it he discusses at length his years at Harvard, and also explains the origins of Ancient Evenings (83.18).
Preceded by advance excerpts in Playboy, Vogue and Paris Review, Ancient Evenings, set in Egypt 3,000 years ago during the reign of Ramses IX, is published on 4 April. Reviews are mixed but the novel climbs to number six on the New York Times bestseller list in mid-May.
In August, he moves from Little, Brown to Random House, the publisher of all of his future books. Jason Epstein becomes his editor for the next 20 years.
In late September, Mailer is nominated for an Emmy for his screenplay of The Executioner's Song. Tommy Lee Jones, who plays Gilmore, wins an Emmy for best actor.
In October, he purchases a home at 627 Commercial Street, Provincetown, where he will spend as much time as in Brooklyn from this point on.