Bert VanDercar

February 8, 2008

Post #2357 – 20080208

I have been reading your extraordinary books to my children for years–well, for several months, it only seems like years but in a good way, really–and have now enjoyed seventeen of them. When the children occasionally tire of a steady diet of Pinkwater we cheat on you with some Richard Peck, but we are pretty much a Pinkwater family. We would like to know if you ever intend to craft a sequel to Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars. These are characters and exploits of which we simply must have more. We are great fans but not so weird you need to erect a barbed-wire fence or anything. We look forward to reading more of what you have already written and all that you are still to write. Cheers!

Daniel replies:

Thank you. I feel like saying this, so I will say it to you: I believe that, over the past 40 years, more than half my energy has been expended dealing with publishers, and the other less-than-half in doing creative work. By dealing with publishers, I mean tricking them into doing what is good for them, for me, and for readers. There are many books I would have liked to write, but never did--this because I could not persuade a publisher to write a contract for them. One example: It took me years of trying to persuade different publishers to do an inexpensive paperback bind-up of all my out-of-print novels. They all said things like, ""That sounds like it would be hard to do,"" ""We have never done that before,"" and ""We don't know how to do that."" Finally Farrar, Straus and Giroux did it in a limited way. ""5 Novels,"" hovered around the number 300 on the sales ranking for the first 18 months, and is still selling steadily years and years later. Simon and Schuster had similar success with ""4 Fantastic Novels."" There are many books I would like to write, and you might well like to read, that will never exist. I continue to do what I can. Meanwhile, I invite you to visit the Pinkwater Podcast on this website, where there are free audio books you may download. And I invite any smart publisher reading this to get in touch with me for some serious conversation.