Beth Macy, author of “Factory Man,” and former Roanoke Times reporter spoke Thursday in Victory Chapel at King’s Grant about her experience researching and writing the book, which was reviewed favorably not one, but three times by the New York Times. The book also gained an early fan in Tom Hanks. The actor’s company, Playtone, has purchased the rights to turn “Factory Man” into a miniseries for HBO. However, Macy said that just because they rights were bought doesn’t mean the miniseries will happen.
When Macy learned, during a project for the Roanoke Times, that Henry County had lost 20,000 jobs to offshoring, she said she wondered, “What happens to a community when half of its jobs go away?”
For her book, “Factory Man,” the former Roanoke Times reporter talked to local residents, furniture company heavyweights and plenty of people in between. Macy said she was able to tell the story of globalization’s effects on a smaller scale by using the local Bassett family and the rise of its company, Bassett Furniture.
Afterwards, Macy held a book signing and question and answer session.