January 1, 1997

Post #479 – 19970101


You know what you should get them to do? You should get them to release an anthology of your short fiction. By “short fiction” I mean, of course, your picture books–anything shorter than, say “The Magic Goose.” You could probably fit all of them in one volume if you just put the text in with no pictures. Purists might complain that the esthetic experience of reading your work will be tainted by taking away the art, but I’ve read two of your books this way (“Wempires” in Omni and “Devil in the Drain” in Marvin Kaye’s _Devils and Demons_ anthology) and can personally testify that they are still dang good reads, pictures or no pictures. Plus, picture books cost a lot and the old ones are hard to find. The world needs a handy one-volume collection of Pinkwater short stories, perhaps bound in rhinoceros hide with gilded page edges, but also released as a mass market paperback so I could buy one. (I thought _5 Novels_ was a great idea, and I hope it miraculously becomes a best seller so you can release a companion volume containing _Yobgorgle_, _Lizard Music_ and the underappreciated _Worms of Kukumlima_.)

On a completely unrelated note: I am moving to Hoboken in a few days and wondered if you could tell me all the cool places to go in Hoboken. By “cool” I mean places where I won’t get beaten up.

Daniel replies:

Hal -- You can have no idea how discouraging getting ""them"" to do anything is. It took me years to get a publisher, any publisher, to do an anthology. ""5 Novels,"" appears to be selling somewhat, even with the accursed and feeble backing of Farrar Straus and Giroux. I have another collection proposed elsewhere. They've been thinking it over for the past three or four months. No sign of an actual thought having taken shape, nor do I expect on any time soon. This is how it goes.

I would say that you are likely to be beaten up anywhere in Hoboken. That's part of its charm.