…Books ‘n’ Stuff

AC Books / New York

The Z Collection: Portraits & Sketches — about many of the writers and artists I have known, worked with, or written about — is being published by the AC Institute in New York in time for the 2015 fall books season. I think of it as a “time capsule made of words”: 21 portraits and sketches of mainstream and countercultural figures, including William Burroughs, Norman Mailer, Mary Hemingway, Paul Theroux, E.L. Doctorow, John Cheever, Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, Herbert Huncke, James Michener, and Nelson Algren. The title refers to the so-called Z closet at Harvard’s Houghton Library, where treasures like Charles Dickens’s weaponized walking stick and Emily Dickinson’s entire writing room are stored.
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'My Adventures in Fugitive Literature' by Jan Herman [Granary Books, 2015]

Granary Books

Granary Books has published “My Adventures in Fugitive Literature” in a limited, illustrated edition. It is subtitled “How I got to San Francisco” (TRUE), clerked at City Lights (TRUE), started a little magazine (TRUE), published William Burroughs (TRUE), and landed in Vermont (TRUE) as editor in chief of Something Else Press.” (AGAIN TRUE). Granary’s description says it “provides a vivid first-person account (SO TRUE!) of Jan Herman’s years in the small press underground of the sixties and seventies” (TRUE), that Earthquake and my Nova Broadcast Press “published Beat, post-beat and Fluxus writers and artists” (TRUE), that I was “editor in chief of Something Else Press” (TRUE), and that the book “is illustrated throughout with color photographs and reproductions.” (BEAUTIFULLY TRUE!) One thing to remember: The book is based on a presentation I tailored to an audience of Burroughs fans, many of them academic specialists and book collectors. So, though “vivid,” my memoir may seem a bit technical for a general audience. There is nothing in it about addiction (except to language), 12-step programs for alcoholics, treatment programs for drug abusers, cures for sexual maladies, or rock stars in recovery. If you’d like to order a copy, go to granarybooks.com.

A Portrait of Nelson Algren

My portrait of Nelson Algren, Ticket to New Jersey, first published in a limited handmade edition by Cold Turkey Press, is now available as a trade paperback from Impromptu Editions.

G.P. Putnam’s Sons

I’m the author of several other books, including A Talent for Trouble, the biography of Hollywood director William Wyler. It is now available as an ebook at Amazon and an ebook on iTunes at the Apple store. Putnam published it in hardcover, and Da Capo Press published it in paperback.

My theater criticism, published in two volumes, is also available: Second Nights (Vol.1) and Second Nights (Vol. 2).

I am also the co-author of the experimental fiction Cut Up or Shut Up, a collaboration with Carl Weissner and Jurgen Ploog (and with a “tickertape” intro by William S. Burroughs).

Books I’ve edited include Brion Gysin Let the Mice In, co-written by Gysin, Burroughs and Ian Sommerville (Something Else Press), and The Something Else Yearbook, an anthology of the arts.

Da Capo Press

Something Else Press

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