I think it'd be a fanastic idea for the NYT to hire Maud Newton, who (in my limited experience--I'm new to this whole blogging thing, to be honest) seems to be incredibly smart about a range of subjects. But not to the exclusion of Mr. Wyatt--how about in ADDITION to? You see, the sexiness of an industry is directly proportionate to the number of reporters assigned to cover it.
And--let's face it--book publishing is HOT these days, don't you agree? If you have any doubts, just look to the New York Post (ALWAYS on the leading edge of journalistic trends). Used to be, back in the day when books weren't so sexy, they had only one guy writing about the publishing scene--a knucklehead who seemed to know nothing whatsoever about the book trade; so the only time he ever wrote about books was when a deal broke the $6-million dollar plateau (and even then he typically failed to spell the editor's name right). Instead all his articles were about Bonnie Fuller and Jann Wenner and Anna Wintour and those boring magazine folks--as if anyone cares!
But now they've added the terrific Sara Nelson--a real pro who knows the industry inside and out (and whose excellent book SO MANY BOOKS, SO LITTLE TIME is due in paperback any day now), and her presence restores some of the lustre to our sorry trade. So I don't mind if the coverage is sometimes shallow and "product" oriented--I just want more column inches!
With apologies to graybeards like McInerney, Ellis et al--to say nothing of snaggletooths like Mailer, Roth, Bellow & the like, much less the iconic Maxwell Perkins himself (perhaps you heard the sad news? Max Perkins, he dead...)--well, THESE are the halcyon days of publishing! And if you have any doubt about this, just wait till you see the new national t.v. spot AAP has funded, featuring Naomi Watts in hot-pants holding a copy of Jon Stewart's AMERICA [the book], and Jon Stewart (not in hot-pants) holding a copy of Jenna Jameson's HOW TO MAKE LOVE LIKE A PORN STAR [which is not pornography but, rather "a book about smart sex"], singing, Cabaret-style,
You feelin' me?
Mad Max Perkins
"Writing is considered a profession, and I don't think it is a profession. I think that everyone who does not need to be a writer, who thinks he can do something else, ought to do something else. Writing is not a profession but a vocation of unhappiness. I don't think an artist can ever be happy."
PRACTICAL MARKETING [Courtesy Zornhau, 2005]
"They should put the 1st couple of pages up in subway adverts. Having read them several times, you'd feel compelled to try the book - if it was any good."
PLATE OF SHRIMP [Courtesy Alex Cox’s REPO MAN, circa 1984]
"A lot of people don't realize what's really going on. They view life as a bunch of unconnected incidences and things. They don't realize that there's this like lattice of coincidence that lays on top of everything. I'll give you an example, show you what I mean. Suppose you're thinking about a plate of shrimp. Suddenly somebody will say like "plate" or "shrimp" or "plate of shrimp" out of the blue, no explanation. No point in looking for one either. It's all part of a cosmic unconsciousness."
- ► 2005 (75)