Fun_People Archive
3 Dec
A Letter from Nan to Dave

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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Tue,  3 Dec 96 11:36:59 -0800
To: Fun_People
Subject: A Letter from Nan to Dave

Forwarded-by: Tom Kuhn <>
Forwarded-by: HumorNet
Forwarded-by: Randy Cassingham

							22 Oct 96

Dear Dave:

I've been seeing all the publicity you've gotten lately for your new book,
"Dave Barry in Cyberspace," and I have to tell you I'm a little, um,
jealous. You see, one of my books hit bookstores recently too and I am not
getting anywhere near the publicity you've received. I realize that this is
probably due to a lot of reasons, one being that I am not nearly as funny
as you are and another being that I am not a nationally syndicated
columnist, and well, yes, probably another reason is that there isn't a
sitcom modeled after my incredibly interesting life called "Nan" on any of
the major television networks. Also it is probably because life just isn't
fair. I tell my kids that all the time when they complain that the other
guy got more sprinkles on his cupcake, but I never really believed it myself
until I started seeing your face plastered on the cover of every magazine
in the universe and all these glowing write-ups about your book in all of
the book review sections of every major and minor newspaper throughout the
free world.

Maybe it is even because your book is better than mine. I don't know,
because I haven't read your book yet. I do plan to read your book, though,
and I've even put it on my Kris Kringle list for Christmas. I'm sure I will
probably like it, too, because I enjoy reading your column a lot. When my
family and I are reading the Sunday paper and I begin laughing out loud
(that's LOL in cyberspace as you already know), slapping the table,
wheezing, and generally busting a gut, my kids ask me what's so funny and
my husband says, "Mommy's probably reading Dave Barry again." So even though
I enjoy and admire your writing, I am still kind of pissed off that you've
been getting all this fabulous publicity while I'm supposed to be satisfied
with two miniscule reviews in the New York Times and Publishers Weekly.

The problem is that with more than 5,000 new books being released every
month, the chances of getting my book noticed by a significant portion of
the reading public are pretty darn dismal. (Unless, of course, I was
Baywatch's Pamela Anderson Lee, whom I read just received a three-million
dollar advance for the rights to her book. I'm sure she got that big advance
because she is a really great writer, and I'm sure that when her book hits
the stores, she will get almost as much publicity as you have received. Memo
to self: check prices on breast enlargement surgery after finishing next

I know there are a lot of crappy books being released every month, but I
don't think mine is one of them. I think my book is pretty good.  I would
even go so far as to say that I think my book will sell a respectable number
of copies if enough people find out about it. I know my publisher thinks I
am a huge pain in the ass because I keep sending them all these little
reports and memos and reminders about things I have been doing to promote
my book and things I would like them to do to promote the book.  I've been
doing things like sending CHAT to all of the newspapers where I live, to
radio stations, and to famous people. I sent a copy of my book to Oprah,
explaining that I, too, am in the Chicago area, and if she had me on her
show she wouldn't even have to pay for a plane ticket. She hasn't called me
or anything yet, but I still get a little nervous every time my business
line rings. I also sent a copy of my book to the White House, even though
I am not a Democrat.

I have all of my friends going into bookstores across the country and asking
for my book. They then report back to me with e-mails like this:  "Nan, I
went into the Borders bookstore in San Francisco last night and they have
two copies of CHAT in the fiction section, spine out, next to Cormac
McCarthy's 'All The Pretty Horses.' I turned both of your books face out
and put them on top of Cormac's books."

Since my book came out I've been frequenting my local bookstores to make
sure they have CHAT in stock. The Barnes & Noble near where I live knows
what kind of car I drive. I'm pretty sure they've posted a full-time lookout
at the door, who, when he sees my Jeep pull into the lot, whispers into his
two-way radio, "The package has arrived." Before I've made it from my car
to the store, the clerks have had enough time to take all three of my books
out of the back room and place them on the front table display, next to the
4,872 copies of "Dave Barry in Cyberspace," just so that I will be
temporarily happy and not send another whiny e-mail to my publisher, who is
paying them to do this.

Anyhow, I was just wondering if, the next time you're at one of the
bookstores as part of your cross-country book-sigining tour sponsored by
Random House, and after you're done signing all those books and entertaining
the huge, fawning crowd with clever quips about all the weird things us
cyber geeks like to do, would you mind checking to see if they have my book
in stock, and if you do happen to find a couple of copies, would you put
them face out--on top of Cormac's books?


Nan McCarthy
author of CHAT: a cybernovel ($7.95, Peachpit Press, ISBN 0-201-88668-5)
and owner of Rainwater Press,
e-mail to

copyright 1996 Nancy J. McCarthy

+ Posted to HumourNet with permission of the author.
+ Later reposted to the Oracle Service Humor Mailing List with permission of
the author.
+ And then... THE TRUE SIGN OF GREATNESS...  posted to the Fun_People  
mailing list with the full honors given to every Dave Barry piece that  
accidentally sneaks in without or with permission of the author.

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