Sunday, October 24, 2010

Conversations about Books

Day 258 of the "What are you reading, and why?" project, and today I'll report on some mini-conversations about books, and give a tip on where to send some creative writing if you are an Illinois teacher.  So heads up to Donna, Susanna, Alice, Chris, Amy, Tom, et cetera!

OK, one conversation was about why this book was $40! Otherwise, the guy would have bought it, and I know he will seek it out, because he was very intrigued by reading around in it.

Here's what the author said about it:  A surreal semi-autobiographical blackbook record of a semi-mad period of my life, in that mindless, timeless state most romantics pass through, confusing flesh madonnas with spiritual ones.  (According to  Know who and what it is?

Yes, Her, by Lawrence Ferlenghetti. It's $40 because it is a first edition hardcover copy in very good condition, with its dustjacket also in very good condition. 
I'm glad that he'll be able to find it at Amazon in paperback as cheap as $5, new, and $1.83 used, and see that it would have been a good deal at $40, since the only hardcover offered in the Marketplace at the moment is $137. But it's signed.

And Lawrence Ferlinghetti would probably be happy about the cheap paperback, too, as he co-founded City Lights Books for softcover books! We checked our paperback fiction shelves at Babbitt's, and even the poetry shelves (just in case) for a softcover edition. But I think A Coney Island of the Mind was somewhere in the stacks on the floor.

Another sweet conversation was with a very young girl who likes very old books. She has some at home.  Her dad says our bookstore looks like his house, with full shelves and piles on the floor that make it hard to get to the shelves.  I was glad I had explained the trade policy to his daughter. They might be able to bring in more than they take back out, reducing their floor clutter....and adding to ours. Uh oh.

And, indeed, some of today's conversations with were people who brought in bags of books and who will be back once somebody has a chance to look at them.  I got only a tiny stack done because on Sundays I teach my little poetry class in the rare book room.

And that's how I got a copy of New Scriptor, published at Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, Illinois as "A Forum for Illinois Educators."  (I will peruse it and return it to the group, to be passed around among educators, next week!)  According to the inside rear cover, "Any Illinois educator may submit ficiton [sic], poetry, drama, art, and expository writing."  Typographical error in the guidelines notwithstanding, this issue does contain poems by Martha Modeana Vertreace-Doody, well-known Illinois poet and educator.

Gosh, I better not make any typos in this blog entry!  Oh, wait, it's a blog entry.  I can relax!

Anyhoo, you can get more info about the journal here.

And numerous conversations today were actually about Babette, of Babette's Books.  (That would be the very cute kitty you see here, who now lives in the bookstore.)


Kim said...

I'd like to try writing some ficiton, too.

DJ Vorreyer said...

Thanks, Kathleen! I will check it out. I'm about ready to send two chapbook manuscripts out to contests again...cross your fingers!

Kathleen said...

I'm crossing my fingers for you, Donna, and my eyes for you, Kim.

Susan Ryder said...

Kitten!!! I love kittens!

A. and S. said...

Boy, I miss Babette. And I'm only on day one of my two days off.

I also admire that Ferlenghetti book.

My favorite little-girl customer is the one that always buys Tolkien (The Silmarillion, Farmer Giles) with her pocket money. I wish there were a legal, non-creepy way to kidnap a child. As in "Will you be my daughter?" (I cannot stress enough that I mean this in the most innocuous way possible.)

Kathleen said...

Kitten love is shared and understood. I also look forward to Babette as a grown-woman cat (I see her this way) sunning in the picture windows, right next to a fine display of such books as Babette's Feast, Cats are Better Than Man, et cetera.

SHS, I'm sure her parents forgive you and understand, and, in her teen years, might take you up on it.

SarahJane said...

Children who spend their pocket money on books! Makes me feel better about the future.