Sold no books.
But gave away a “Cheesesteak.”
A guy in the café, looking over my books, asked if I was from the East Coast. He turned out to be from South Philly (Southern ‘60), where he played in a combo with Ernest Evans (“Chubby Checker”). After graduation, he split for NYC, where he lived the life of a dancer/actor/artist/carpenter/handyman – and lived in the same apartment building as Sam Melville when he was making his bombs. He came here in ‘84, attracted by the “light” (a very “artist” thing to say) – and driven from the Apple one winter when pipes were freezing and madmen were screaming in the street.
Anyway, he made no move to purchase, so…
In other news…
Okay, it’s not the same as an editor at a notable NY publisher saying she’d read your short story, do you have a novel she can look at, but, as things stand, pen-and-paper ledger-wise, having a publicist at a notable NY publisher ask if you would review a book about the 1936 Berlin Olympics, recently translated from the German, is a kick. When you stand this far from the literary red hot center, any approving nod is a ticker tape parade.
How did you get to me, I asked. Usually it is some off-the-wall, transgressive, outlaw cartoonist, thinking, well he liked _____. Maybe he’ll like me. (Which I also, let me quickly add, welcome.)
It turned out to be my otherwise-ignored panning of “The Boys in the Boat” as manipulative, manufactured hogwash in the not-widely-read broadstreetreview.com a year-and-a-half ago. She hadn’t read the book but my review “fascinating and the criticism valid.”
So I checked “Olympia” out of the public library for Deep Background.
Toss stones into ponds and you know where the ripples lead – even if sometimes it’s only a free book.