“The Day I Became a Matador,” by A. E. Hotchner

I’m going to take you back to Spain in the summer of 1959, when the big event was a mano a mano bullfight between the two great matadors of that era—-Luis Miguel Dominguín and Antonio Ordóñez. There hadn’t been such a bullfight, a mano a mano, in thirty years, and there hasn’t been one since then. So it was a great event.

And my longtime friend, Ernest Hemingway, called me and said, “I’m going to go there and cover it for LIFE magazine. Why don’t you come on over, and we’ll have another adventure?”

I had met Ernest when I edited his novel Across the River and into the Trees, and afterwards I had adapted many of his short stories and novels for television and for the movies. We’d had some great adventures together…