Sold two books.
The first buyer, Pat, was from Ireland. Husky; white hair; short, full white beard. He took a “Schiz.” Reading, no doubt, for the long flight home – and opening up a new country of readers to me, I believe.
The second, Dobie, black t-shirt, green skull cap, tattoos up both forearms, went with “Cheesesteak.” He’d lived in Philly for a year, on 46th Street actually, but across Market from where I grew up. He was from Stockton, lived in San Francisco, but came to Berkeley to see his therapist. He worked “in bars,” doing what left unspecified. He was a published “Meat Poet,” a term he didn’t care for, but had no chapbooks with him so we couldn’t swap. Next time. First, he was going on a three-book-store reading tour of New Jersey. (He’d like to write and teach but the bar money was to good to give up.) We had a nice chat about “The Writing Life.”
In other news…
1.) Two other people showed interest. A young woman – blond pony tail, back pack, nice smile behind her mask – self-described as “More an artist than a writer, mostly poetry” and a middle-aged man – accent either Scandenavian or German – who asked if “Best Ride” was “a travelogue.” I gave each a card – and neither has been heard from since. (That’s 1,412 in a row.)
2.) Annals of Research: I have been engrossed in writing about a graphic “true crime-ish” account of a fatal single-vehicle accident, which occurred in a small Connecticut town in 1956. Near the end, the author reproduces the first three paragraphs of a newspaper story that appeared the following day. Wouldn’t it be nice to see the rest?
I Googled and found the paper, which I’d never heard of, still existed. It even had “archives.” I was stymied, however, because I couldn’t navigate my way through them. Then I saw the town library had the paper in its archives. I called, explained what I wanted, and said, of course, I’d be happy to pay if they sent me a copy. “Oh that’s not necessary,” the clerk said. “You have e-mail? I’ll send it to you.”
Zip. Zap. There it was. (You know how many rolls of microfilm I could have seen myself spooling through? Amazing!
I was so excited I thought, What about the police report?
“Oh, I don’t think there’s much chance we’d still have that,” I was told.
“I didn’t think so. But I just got a copy of the story from the Call, so…
“You did? I’d love to see it.”
So I e-mailed it to him. A couple days later, I got an e-mail. “Send us $2 and…”
Sold two books.