There were such nice responses both here and on my Facebook page last week when I published my farewell to Mobile Libris, I thought you might enjoy a poem I wrote a few years ago in celebration of our fall 2010 season, one of our busiest. I read the poem at our annual ML holiday party, and it was a huge hit. There are, of course, some inside jokes, but I hope readers here enjoy it, too.
The poem includes book titles that we sold during the season, along with excerpts of blurbs and reviews from the books, a bunch of real subtitles (oh, the subtitles!), and some imagined email correspondence with clients and staff. Hope you get a laugh out of it, too. The book industry is full of weird quirks, enough to make you cry sometimes.
Fall 2010, From the Desk of Mobile Libris
and the former chair of the FDIC is throwing down
the gauntlet at the New York Palace Hotel. “It’s a
Senseless Panic, we’re having a meltdown, there are
thirty-five hundred guests, we should have 150 books, we can sell
40-50 a day, we need a fix, a bailout, fix our broken
system.” Mobile Libris is given a blunt indictment…
We sold one book.
It’s 6 o’clock pm and we’re sending Half the Sky
to Women in Communications
It’s 6:30pm and The New York Public Library is traveling an
American Passage: The History of Ellis Island.
The Women’s Republican Club hosts Great Negotiations:
Agreements That Changed the Modern World.
The New School presents the season’s first non-fiction forum:
Geoffrey O’Brien and The Fall of the House of Walworth:
A Tale of Madness and Murder in Gilded Age America,
a Downward Spiral of Festering Insanity and murderous
mentality. Darkly Mesmerizing.
Developing Life’s Most Important Skill.
It’s a brilliant synthesis, a revolutionary look,
tremendously engaging. Compelling. Inspirational.
It’s Fordham University, Poets Out Loud
Eleventh Street Bar: Triptych Readings
It’s emerging and established writers
brought together for brief and luminous
readings in New York City’s East Village.
across from Chelsea Piers, and Nancy Brinker
is sharing how her sister’s struggle and death
led her to raise money for scientific research
in the hopes of one day finding a cure.
It’s KGB Poetry on East 4th St, after a bit of rain,
and Rita Ann Higgins is Throwing in the Vowels
while Cohorting with Philip Fried.
in the corner to my left, wearing the red and white striped
trunks -- Eliza Griswold with her Dispatches from the
Fault Line Between Christianity and Islam – the Tenth
Parallel!! She’s a courageous reporter, a gifted writer.
The book is deeply impressive and immensely rewarding.
Her talent is like a blinding light! She gives us a rare look
and a riveting investigation of the triumph of the human
imagination; an essential work that will remake the world
in years to come!
one of the few people in America committed to
exposing the monstrous elephants in the room, she blends
outrage and optimism, she’s a voice of conscience
in a time when we need conscience more than ever,
one of Time Magazines 100 most influential people --
Arianna Huffington, with her hard hitting polemic: Third World
America: How Our Politicians are Abandoning the Middle Class
and Betraying the American Dream.
How Our Economy is Undermining the Environmental Revolution
How the European Model Can Help You Get a Life
How Does It Feel to be a Problem?
How the Fierce Handle Fear
How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America
How the Tea Party Movement is Fundamentally Remaking
Our Two Party System.
How Wars End
How Religion Divides and Unites Us
How to Raise a Drug Free Kid
How Colleges are Wasting our Money and
Failing Our Kids – and What We can Do About It
How Pleasure Works
How Food Shapes Our Lives
How Baseball Cards Became an American Obsession
How Mighty Table Tennis Shapes Our World
How One Man and Ten Symphonies Changed Our World
How Medicine, Meditation and Madonna Saved My Life
How I Lost My Job, Put on My Pajamas and Found Happiness
Hello Booksellers: just a gentle reminder that you are expected
to arrive at your venue 20-30 minutes before the start time of the program.
Hi Sharon, Jane is going to cover my event next Thursday. Thanks, Katie.
of Half the Sky at Cooper Union, the UN, the New York Times,
Saturday morning, Monday noon, and Thursday evenings for the rest
of their lives. Can you sell books for us there?
coming down with the Icarus Syndrome.
Hi Sharon. Just want to let you know that Priya will be working for me tonight.
Booksellers: Please remember, we always tell the event coordinators
that you will arrive 20-30 minutes before the start of the program.
Please bear this in mind when planning your time. Thanks, Sharon
Sharon, Kim will be working my Saturday event. Thanks, Katie.
Dear QRST University Press. Thanks for getting in touch and
asking Mobile Libris to be part of your University Snoozefest
next week. We’ll gladly be there! Cheers, Sharon
Booksellers: You must be on time for your events, 20-30 minutes before the
start time of the program. This is important. Sharon
Hey Sharon. Shantaya will be covering my Brooklyn Library event next Tuesday.
See you later, Katie.
Hi Sharon. I know that it’s 4:45 on a Friday afternoon
and the chances for this are slim, but could you possibly
sell books for us in five minutes at Soho House? I think
we’d need about 750,000 books. They are expecting 20 people.
Hi Sharon. Anne will be covering my event tonight. Thanks, Katie.
to get over this Icarus Syndrome. Sharon
And now it is Saturday, December 18, 2010.
Our season has been The True Story of the
Riot Grrrl Revolution, The (Almost) Complete and
(Entirely) Entertaining Story of America.
A Story of Steam, Industry, and Invention,
A Super Sad True Love Story,
A Story of Punishment and Deliverance.
It’s been The Epic Struggle for Wealth, Power and
Civilization. We’ve had Adventures in Taxidermy,
Adventures Among Ants, Adventures in the
Margin of Error.
It’s been a Journey Behind the Headlines.
It’s Three Women, Three Miracles,
and a Ten Year Journey of Discovery and
It’s now The End of the Day, The End
of the West, The End of the World
As We Know It. The End and the Beginning.