tv Mitchell Kaplan Les Standifrod and Ana Menendez Discuss Books and Reading CSPAN April 20, 2017 6:46am-8:36am EDT
books in beautiful on this beautiful night here in south florida. so we welcome you to our store. >> most book stores don't open in a front yard? >> no, what we did is this building was built in the 20s for karl it is very old. historic building. and the book shop runs around the courtyard cafe, and as you can see particular plenty of people who come and partake of this and we have in music on the weekends but we just think that flows beautifully with books. >> how many book event dos you do on a regular basis? >> on a yearly basis we do about 600 book epghts year. about 600 events often kids and adults and other kinds of things. but we're a very, very active school. >> when did you open? >> i opened books about 35 years ago. >> why? >> because, you know, the story
is basically i was a failed law student english major in college an i didn't want to give up u the dream of being part of a literary culture so one quick way of doing that was getting into the book business into book stores and i always loved book stores. when i was a kid i find myself in a bookstore more than i was in college. in law school. so just seemed unnatural. >> like cable -- >> originally from miami beach believe it or not, and so -- you know when i moved back from where i was going to school, karl gave us -- didn't know very well but i explored it and a it was right before an independent book shop. seems to be a booming town it is surrounded by miami. >> yeah about five mile front seat airport. about 26 different little cities, miami beach, miami, hilia, miami itself so karl is
one of those little cities and one of the most historic of all of the cities as well. founded by a man named george merrick and in the teens, in fact, more of a book that was published on his life by the university of florida. and -- or it is a gorgeous little city that has become a cultural sham within the miami community. >> who is your audience? >> or audience is just about everybody actually because of the uniqueness of the store we get people coming from all over. but the local audience is an audience just a couple of blocks away with is ridge area where in a business district -- across the street is a wonderful art cinema as well. >> but what we like to think we draw them from everywhere actually. >> you're actually involved in the book fair. what is jr. involvement? >> one of the founders along with eduardo, i was a young kid,
and had no idea of what had the future would bring and eduardo and other book sellers together and let's put on a book fair and he said greats. and we did, and miami at the time was in the early 80s. in the magazine had a store that says miement paradise law in a big question mark. i think what ed war with doe wanted to do was bring rights to miami in the book fair, and i've been to new york, book country and others, put together a whole community came together, it was a very diverse community at the time. still is and we decided to kateer to diverseness. >> what is it today? >> a very is entry brant interesting city with so many different communities that are so different more than others yet tied together by its diversity.
it revel it is in its diversity. >> what is happening cultural community is becoming really much more sophisticated. we have incredible writers here. top men and women, and movie "moonlight" was a miami original more or less. so there's a lot happen hadding here. that wasn't happen hadding when i was a kid growing up in miami beach back in the 70s to early 60s. >> >> the festival started out with two day. back almost 34 years ago and it fell a full week, and we have now probably close to 600 offers that have come over the week period of the book fair. and it really is something that miami is not really proud of is, big tent under which all of miami sits, and so it's been something that i take a lot of
pride in so does miami -- >> why has miami developed such a writers -- village? weprobably spent two tore or the programs on that. you know miami started probably if you ask people about miami they would have told you about the mystery writers like charles throughout miami blues, even orlando hung out here, and you know -- [inaudible conversations] all of those guys, and then that all happened because miami was so strange. you know all of the strange murders that took place here. you know the cocaine cowboys. couldn't make up something that didn't appear in the news a few days or few months later. but since that early, early plus of miami you then begin to find miami as a community becoming more rich allowing to live here.
we have some like -- who won the kingsly prize, and he lives here in wright. you have a wonderful fiction writer living here. you have an incredible diverse latin american community people writing in spanish. and portuguese, so you do have the diversity of miami is what you made it to interesting. >> couple of authors one of the authors we talk to on mendez from cuba, talked to one from haiti, all of those writers are so important to what makes up miami now. >> well welcome to miami. this is booktv on c-span2, and for the next two hours we're going to have a discussion about book and writing, what you're reading, what some of our guests are reading as well. mitchell kaplan is poundser, owner of books and bookstore. pef this location in gable. they have a location at the miami airport as well and where else? >> we're in lincoln road on south beach.
we're in the beautiful -- [inaudible conversations] and then also in the performing arts center. adrian and -- performing arts. we have a store there as well. and then we've opened up a new store, books and box and bikes a bookstore, bike shop. >> that is in lynwood which is -- our version of a little bit of brooklyn with, you know, incredible -- >> it is, it is. >> well, we're going to be having that interactive discussion on c-span live programs your chance to participate. we'll put the phone numbers up a little bit later after we meet or ore guests so why don't we go on inside and we'll -- join our other guests as well. let tom go in first because he's got the camera. so -- mimple el kaplan can an independent bookstore thrive and survive today? >> i think most definitely. right now independent bookstores
are come intog their own once again. i think last year there was something like 60, to 70 new book shops that have opened, and there's something for real spaces and what people do on internet. there's certainly internet shopping that goes on but a sense of community that's created with with a real space like a book shop. >> is this a community space go ahead and sit down. >> oh, most definitely it is i think we are really about spaces. >> see folks that have joined us program in utah even more thani. what they are really doing is let's introduce you to mmfa program at florida international university and author on its rights and mendez a an author, former journalist. autumn menendez you have a book called in cuba i was a german shepherd how do you come up with
a title like that, and what does that mean? >> not autobiographical. >> it was punch line to a joke that i heard when i was a reporter used to cover little havana, my first time at the harold. and it was a joke that -- a wonderful sculptor and i didn't know how to do it but it stayed with me and when i left journalism and began to write fiction i was going to write a story revolving around this joke 2378 >> let's stand before what is master of fine arts and how do you get into your program at fiu. >> master of fine arts is degree that i would he hesitate to tell parents to send their -- daughter and sons to come to because the -- the parents probably want them to learn how to sell bonds.
[laughter] do thing they can make sure can sell their children a lot of money and you don't become a writer to become rich and famous. what we do is offer the opportunity to those people who can't do anything else to take that talent. >> thank you. >> to take that talent and -- bring it to the max to shape it into a -- into a way that will find that audience that -- that the person is looking for. and it's a -- like all of the arts, many, many, many are called and very few are chosen, but the reason we're there i think is to give those applicants and students that are admitted professional tools so that when they go out into that cold, cruel world, they really know what's required that is not a guarantee of
success as we know, the arts are terribly competitive. but ours are very practical minded program not theoretical at all. you want to reach your audience. let talk about what your audience is, let's talk about how you can take that talent that is already there and hone it to the professional level. i often liken it to -- a bunch of young men who have shown up have been drafted by the nfl, they show up at summer training kmp, an the coach says you know you're tremendously talented. now let's talk about what it takes to operate at the professional level. day one, all of those fresh faces looking at you, what do you tell them? thing as originality. what they are really doing is they're worried about going 't be. let's talk about how to shape that talent in a way that makes a connection? you know, everybody who come miss is very good at expression but i say you know babies are too. they just nobody wants to hear
what they have to say. you're very good at expressing yourself what we're talking about is making that connection with the audience. how does that happen? what does it take? >> autumn menendez when you sit .. town to write a book, what's the most difficult part for you? >> well let me just say before that -- is you wouldn't know it by his use of the word but mys professor many, many year ago he's not to blame for anything. [laughter] but he -- was the only class that i took and it was undergraduate all needed encompass everything from soim very grateful to him, of course, for that. and then i have a book that i still carry which was a book that he used and i think still uses by anyways what's the hard est thing when i sit down to write? these days it is sitting down to
write because i have a small child, and time has just gotten away from me unfortunately. >> we're showing this book. what is it about this book that -- works for you? >> well, i have -- i brought three books and they're all of poetry that have been very important to me throughout my life, and the first one was karl samburg well wind i think was first one and then early moon which my uncle joni martinez who is a poet mitch -- gave me as i was a child. i was i think i was six or seven when he gave me had the first one. this one dedicated in 1979 so i was nine, and it was a very -- it was just a beautiful i remember the fog comes in and it just -- a beautiful book and i think that what it did for me was that
it demystified poetry we're so afraid of poetry, and it just made it, you know, part of my language. and then there was this book that they introduced to me almost 30 years ago i suppose it is now. and -- [laughter] all of us here, and then another bosks one that i picked up here at books of books. when i was a columnist in miami harold and kind of having a rough ride i used to hang out here a lot, and i especially among poetry books for some reason and i picked up i think and picked up -- imitate it heavily. the notes of horace, which were translations by contemporary poet david mcclatchy and their fantastic.
horace is a nice comfort. why do you worry, the internet question with your finite mindss >> obvious questions i have for you, knowing your love of poetry. you are not a poet. i do incorporate poetry into writing? how does that influence youraltm writing?sa >> i'm not sure it has come although some people would say that my writing is lyrical. but i think it's just the love of the word and a sense of the rhythm, but also promote poetry strides forward, which is a sort of capturing and that is such a
wonderful calling. >> host: les standiford committee of britain of fiction and nonfiction books. but you're not a poet either. why do you treat poetry or bring poetry into a writing class? >> when i was in graduate school myself, the program at utah even more than 30 years ago, we were forced, even if they thought of ourselves as fiction writers, to take a class in the writing of poetry. i remember walking across the campus that january morning, could take a class with henry taylor who went on to win the national book award in poetry and thinking wow, this is a good digit is that. after this class, i am out of here because my idea of poetrydt poetry -- i had no idea that modern poetry lies. but i went there and i discovered a whole new world.
the fact is for the first career four years after i graduated, the only things that get published for poems. i was, for many years ait, practicing poet and enjoyed itde and came to understand i ain't got a lift there after they say in essential moment that fiction writers are at the end of the story or at the end of the novel. although we writers want to have the reader put down the peace and say yes, that is exactly right. that is what i was looking for. when i had the athletic the songwriters, they can get that in a page, in such a short period of time. i'm working for a 20300 pages two or three years in the rain to get that hopefully at the end of the book.
the words are so important to me, the language of every sentence, even if it's not fiction is just as important to me as a line of poetry. >> host: recent nonfiction by les standiford. who is henry flagler question what is his role? >> is going to call the book the man who invented florida.lo because before henry flagler, there wasn't much to florida. the largest city in the state was jacksonville with about 4000 people. a couple thousand people in tampa. if you drew a line from jacksonville to southwest about the middle of the state, that was as far as you could go. there was no boca raton, no miami. the key west, the most importanp city in the state are in a way
was 20,000 people. you could also get there by boat. for a long time after flagler and came in the late 1980s, it remained that way. but he did an amazing thing after extending his railroad down the eastern seaboard of florida creating palm beach, who creating miami throughout dallas. and then someone came to him at the notion of extending the railroad over 153 miles of largely open water to key west. at the time he was 72 years old and all the money he ever needed. and still he said i'm going to do it. people said it's impossible. the impossible could be done anh in doing so he staged that little island to close the
american friends here in 1912. post also is responsible for that traffic jam on 95. [laughter] >> guest: no matter how many lame to key west and that there will never be us because people are fascinated going to the end of the american road if he was. >> host: mitchell kaplan, what are you reading? >> well, interestingly i've been reading a book that many people know. there are two books i've been reading. when is the book by a tool for one day called even mortal. it is a book that if you haven't read, you ought to read.ma it's really kind of amazing. i'm dealing with in sickness in my own family and this has been very, very helpful in terms of ain't how one deals with an elderly parent in the kind of things to look out for in the
kinds of conversations to have been that sort of thing. so it's been really good. and then, we'll shall all be ark solid kind of remarkable in its selection and essays that he wrote a book called books foror living. a series of books that have inspired him over the years. i've been reading this to get a little bit of sustenance but the challenging times of next week's. >> host: ana manon has come the same question.rsations >> well, i just finished for the second time -- i really recommend books because i feel it so personal and i don't want to impose my taste on people. but it's a really beautiful book and i love everything about it. it's of course voices about thef
end of the soviet union and it covers the globe. and she talks to ordinary people about their struggles with the end of the soviet union. the voices she collects are astonishing. the fact that they are ordinarys people is something we aspire to as fiction writers. this is what we aspire to his people in a in how they rise to those occasions. since the collection and maybe hundreds of these places. i'm reading right now.ct, i'm i'm not finished with it. i'm only at number nine. it's more like a long essay on
tierney. 20 lessons by timothy snyderme just came out. we were talking about the things he can do stories that you can put on the internet. number nine where it admits it is the time to our language. avoid pronouncing phrases about nonsense. think of your own way of speaking on separate yourself from the internet read books. i will end it there. it is kind of its cure for most americans writer who is a czech writer and i just finished reading two love of solitude which is about books and love books give you. it's a quirky book. it's not anything that i think would be published here today
because there's -- it's a very sharp look. it's about a man who collects wastepaper and when he sees the books that he wants coming he takes them home and the artifice to collapse on him.. there's no real plot only knew through. dishes the love of books and a beautiful little book i finished reading that she had >> once again the authors name? in the book name? of >> too loud of solitude. >> too loud of solitude. professor stand up for it, what is on your list question art >> let me just preface with a couple of things. first of all, i want to second the idea or third video browsing in a bookstore that delay. there is no such thing -- the internet allows to buddy richig thinks they might not have on b otherwise. there's no such thing as a pile
of books on a table on the internet. you come into the nonfiction section and maybe you're looking for some thing and you can't fight me, but while you're looking for you see a dozen other books sound interesting. you pick them up, look at them. maybe you could learn how to do this on the internet, but i never had. it's wonderful to browse. the second thing i want to say it's about ian asked what you're reading, reading my studentagese manuscripts, since the pages. they multiply like a mudslide in california during the rainy season. some of them thank god because i have graduates to vent, to an undergraduates are good. i also read many of the books people have come to know in this business. sort of like following up on what anna said, i've gotten to the point where i just can't
bring myself in public to say you should read this one because my other friend is listening and they are thinking --listen [inaudible] >> i'm sneaking up on my answer. my lifelong friend and a wonderful writer who many of you now, james w. hall. i wouldn't dream of missingho james w. hall. i hope some of you feel the same way. a couple of books that i've been reading recently and i have nothing to do with the use, do not know these people.co one, a novel that is going to come out of here in a couple weeks called unreliable by a guy named delete rv.
he wrote a couple of almost unknown historical mysteries in the early part of the century. this book is a real tour de force that says you can't trust a thing i say.ma but i may have just killed my ex-wife and i am not so sure if perhaps my love her, too. for me, it was a bear that i i couldn't pass up. you do finally find out who did it in by the end of that time, you don't really care. i really enjoyed that book. and a very different kind of look, a piece of nonfiction that i think it's just absolutely remarkable. i can't imagine anyone not reading this has not been swept
away by it. it's called rise by care of brookings. it is the story of a woman whose family issue is abuse, her children abuse. she walks out and gets it in her mind the way she will say this family, put it back together is to build a house for more all in up and she manages to do it. the record of it is absolutelyiy astonishing. i can't recommend it highly enough. >> the four we go any further, i went to get a television audience involved. we are going to put the phone numbers on the screen.lk we're talking about looks, reading of what you are reading. if you dial the number and cannot please let us know what. you are reading right now. we've got three people very involved in the world of literature and books. here's your chance to ask them some questions as well.st and
(202)748-8200 for those of you in eastern and central time zone. (202)748-8201 if you do not and pacific time zones. contact us from social media as. well at ein buch tv as their twitter handle.fa make a comment on her face but age right there they spoke.com/buch tv. finally, you can send in e-mail to buch email@example.com. also we have an audience here, one of the 600 event that are happening this year. we are going to be passing around a microphone. if you have any questions for our panel as well, please ask them. s we got this information from your staff mr. kaplan, and the top selling at books and books right now as far as nonfiction goes -- hill billy by jd vance, have any
of you read this this has made a lot of list, a lot of best seller lists, et cetera. given our world today has anyone picked this up? when you see a best seller list do you go to those books? [laughter] >> well, you know the way -- probably pretty much like last -- a lot of times i'm reading books far in advance before books have actually come out so i cially don't necessarily pick up a book because it is a best seller. but i've certainly heard mr. vance you know i think on c-span and all over the place talk about this book. so i understand why it's such a big seller trying to explain this selection more or less. and he does an interesting way. >> not usually pick it up but i rely on the staff books and books or friends this on tyranny was recommended by my friend the novelist christina garcia.
and i bought it immediately and it wasn't -- this point at all but also tries to explain last selection or rather next one trying to save us. [laughter] excuse me and i also get recommendations from other books i mean books aren't like good friends they lead you to good books, in fact, they have a really great blurb for this book on tyranny and it is really coif a tree of association that is how i find my bock and book reviews things like that. >> jennifer. >> very rarely you know, i'm an outliar. writers are for the most part live on the edge on outside looking in, and i'm always looking for that book that no one has had told me about. i don't have to worry about one that everybody has heard about. i know it will well taken care of and read by readers and i'm
always looking for the other one. >> also i should say one of the things that we've done as an industry, independent book seller in the industry we have indy next an indy next list and comes in brochure is like this and you can find it. what it does is it has book seller recommendations each month i believe it is about 20 different books, and they're actually blurbs from book sellers all over the country a diverse list. very interesting list and book that was chosen as the number -- book for this month of march was exit west. by moshi hamid and book you might not sleard of before. i think the dirty little secret in books is there's so many books being published that -- all of us book sellers, authors, peel in the media, any time we can shine a light on something
that is not tcially well known it does that author and book a great service. because none of us have the kind of money that it take to have to advertise wide like you would if you were selling razor blades or something else. so all of us have a duty to be able to let people know about those books that are really, really good and really important to each of us. >> well this reminds mitchell too of alan schutte his daughter is here used to say he didn't really like to give bad reviews if he didn't like a book he wouldn't you know do that review. because there were so many wonderful books that were being published and deserve to be praised given a wider audience and that was philosophical stand and i've never forgotten that. >> before we get any further in, there seems to be a really strong cuban american writers community.
especially maybe because we're in south florida. but fair statement? >> i went with a group of them to cuba and we just cam back a couple of weeks ago where i picked up this horrible cold, and otherwise great trip, and there is. and we -- we know each other. we try to support each other and we just did an event last saturday here. with the cuban at fiu. yeah. >> while here. >> i want to show this book as well by anna. this is -- loving what is this about? >> that's my second book, my first novel, and it's about a woman who goes back to cuba to find out what happened to her mother. her mother abandoned her to the states with her grandfather and stayed in cuba. and developed a love affair
with -- [inaudible conversations] may or may not have been in her mind. and it ruins her life and ruins her daughter's life, and yeah. to voice. >> this is an autograph copy that we pick here at books and books. [laughter] hard to get back. [laughter] >> that's the end of her david the historian has a new book coming out in april is that a u must read? in -- i think you know what i mean. >> now, that's one of those when i said rarely well that's one of the instance where is, obviously, i'm going to go look at the chief -- in my area, and see what he's up to. see what he's doing and a eric larson and simon and those guys are going to be on the best seller list with whatever it has think bring out because they're good and i want to see what they're doing because -- aspire that's the bar you aspire
to the very best, and you don't turn away from it. you i think you -- try your best to do what the best are doing. >> mitchell kaplan david's new book how do you -- how do you stock your shelves with that? do you order five copies? >> enter this room david all through here. no, he's -- he is one of the great -- best selling authors who sells across every single retailout let. as i was telling you earlier there's sol best selling authors who we won't really very much of because they're found in costco or other places an they're not necessarily -- books that speak to our customer base but customer does as does eric larson and others mentioned but red lights nice thing about having a book shop is being able to have met school of the authors over the course of time and david was coming down to
miami very early on when he wrote the john adams biography because his daughter -- very few people know this, about his -- i can't remember son or his daughter was married to senator bob graham's child as well and they were living in miami. so david would come down and browse in my old shop and there was nothing better than a day in which david came in and to be able to tack to him about books and all of that sort of thing. >> he's a wonderful guy. i don't to put you on the spot but relatively famous customers who come in. i don't know if you want to say their names or not. you've told me. >> name is being top florida so diverse. you never know who you will meet in the store. you can have -- you could have you know one of the most conservative -- senators sitting in the -- in the courtyard and then browsing shelves to be one of the most liberal congress people here.
so we have people of all kinds that come in and out of the book shop and that's what we think of as a bookstore is a very safe space with all kinds of plel views are welcome. that's not the case necessarily on my own facebook page but certainly is the case in the bookstore is where we welcome voices of all kinds. smg we will recently up at politics and book stores in washington where they're doing -- you know we talked to it in musk teen co-owners about to teach him what they're doing. is that something a that a lot of independence are doing? >> one of the phase you know in the incredible -- upheaval is that they're talking about what can we do to act as true community centers and i think that best thing that we can do is try to bring rationality and fact based
discussion back into, into our dialogue into our civic dialogue. and we're going to start a series called shine on, and you know shine on immigration, and shine on other issues. it comes from a poem that autumn wrote 1939 i believe in which we talks about darkness descending before world war ii and way that we keep darkness from descending completely is to shine lights at each other that allow darkness to be fought off. and i think the role of a book seller is something like that as well. >> i want to say that miami is a remarkable literary center when i came mere in 1981 that was i looked around i saw a lot of guys with shirts up to navals riding fast boat but i wasn't there were a lot of people reading books in miami and there was no books and books yet -- and chase -- we --
in past 35 years what's happened to this place in ternals of a couple of universities developing mfa program and books spreading all over, a -- a community well most exciting thing is an educator having students like other people who have gone to become important spokespersons cuba pan american community see that actually developing before your very eyes in your bard and be able to give people from part -- [inaudible conversations] that place is amazing. we're very, very fortunate. >> when you think about it you have a rise of a book fair with year round programming miami dave college with fiu florida university of him. i recall earlier -- on when the wonderful writer and you mentioned before was here in miami for grant to james had given university of miami when he wrote the book caribbean and
he left some money and remind me to encourage caribbean writer. and i remember as a young girl coming into the book shop with reading of a book not published yet. so you know you see this -- this growth and it has been really wonderful to see how a literary community can have such an impact on the growth of the city as well. >> of course there were in the 80s and before there were wonderful spanish language bookstores which no longer -- [inaudible conversations] >> downtown bookstore and those are no longer -- no longer -- they're closed. >> and part of the reason is that -- the major book shops as well started to sell books in spanish that's why there aren't as many book shops around as well and in fact some of our best sellers are books? in spanish german girl i won't try to -- speak spanish when i'm not goig to pretend that i'm the fliewngt when i'm not.
[inaudible conversations] i speak english. it was ceased at cuban book fair. they wouldn't let -- actually they gave it an award and ceased it at the book fair and nonpolitical book. [laughter] although apparently draws parallels between the germany and the, you know -- castro. >> could be fair. >> decent spanish language and we have a spanish language program. programming that happens in spanish and rereally try as much as we can to cater to the broad cross section of spanish writers here. who often don't get a voice. it is hard to publish in spanish actually. the other thing that has happened i should say interest about miami is that we're also developing a publishing community here where we never did have one before. there's a marvelous just blocks
away called mango media and they publish lots and lots of different books they have a deal with the -- ap who say publish some books by the ap. they publish books by the miami harold and then they publish a lot of original works as well and that's just beginning to develop. which is so nice to see as well. >> autumn menendez are your books available in cuba? >> i don't know. i didn't go looking for them. this time that i was there or any time i've been there. i did bring copies of my books for some literary we met with some authors and some literary critics so i brought them. but unfortunately the only book that has translated to spanish f mine is loving chi. i was hoping they bought the rights looming in spain with a german shepherd and waiting for it because i wanted my
grandmother to read it and my grandmother died in 2010, and book has not been translated into spanish unfortunately. and now and then i hear people saying i'd like to translate the book and please do and nothing happens. which is a pity. but i brought the english copies. >> ever thought about translating it yourself? >> no. i write now and then in spanish. but english is really my strongest language now even though i spoke spanish exclusively until five or six. but i went to school in english written in english so strongest language and you should only translate into your strongest language. >> we have callers on the line and you're very patient let's hear from michael in galesburg, illinois you're on c are span 2 from miami. >> how's it going? >> i wonder if anybody on the
panel heard of richard rodgan watermelon and i'll take my answer off air. thanks, bye. >> thank you, sir. >> i see you nodding your head. >> he was talking about richard an interesting writer, and richard brotgan and which i was in high school but richard is a very interesting writer his own write. >> in new york -- [inaudible conversations] do you know what we're going to have to put mary on hold for just a second. sign the line mary. reminder that you if you get on you'll hear everything through your trch let's move on to brian right here in miami brian go ahead.
>> i was asking about to ask this panel you know individuals or -- [inaudible conversations] development of the future. >> i couldn't hear -- >> can you reare repeat it more slowly having trouble hearing you. >> yeah. my question was the panel and i wanted to ask what can individuals do to support bookstores local aand help them develop to the future? >> thank you, sir, and we're not going to ask mitchell kaplan that story. [laughter] we know what he's gopg going to say but we'll go to -- [inaudible conversations] >> you know. >> one of the most natural things instead of an idea of what to buy is to come into is an evening program. listen to people talk or read, then browse and you probably
come out of here with an armloads of books. you don't have to think too much about how to support this story if you just come in and feel it. >> love the question because that is something we can't take them for granted like we can't take our newspaper for granted or institutions for granted and something that timothy snyder talked about so i love the question an love empus of it and what he said just come in all the time. i'll meet people -- for lunch and pill say well let's go to books and books because i get time to browse and we're surrounded by this -- great collection and yeah. >> what a great concept to have a cafe, a coffee shop and bookstore when i was growing up two things never crossed paths what a marvelous notion. >> did predate borders in barnes & noble doing is this? >> what happened was as i told
you earlier i was dropout of law school from the loot -- and i went to law school in washington, d.c. in your neck of the woods and i happen to live right down the street from kramer books and afterwards which was one of the first bookstore cafes i've ever seen and those days more bookstore than cafe now i think it has become more cafe than bookstore. but it is -- and what politics and pros is doing with busboys and poets as well. so i always felt that it was unnatural coming together of that sense of community revolutions could be hatched over a cup of coffee and that sort of thing but felt it was a natural, natural fit and while we were able to find this phase with a courtyard it all, you know, light bull l about went off and all made perfect sense. >> so important also to reconnect after this -- crisis to reconnect with the analog world and book stores are --
the place and it is a place to connect with friends face-to-face three or four of them instead and on facebook, and that -- and that has helped me. >> it's very funny that you say that because i love the analoghs world. one of the books i was going to recommend was smooth globe prove one of michael's earlier books was about a record store and the loss of records stores. i heard him give a lecture once about the notion of old technologies and how they are old and on the layout doesn't doesn't mean they were bad. different stores that we have and there's a lot of people out there looking to do that. and it made me think if i were to do another story nobody stealing this idea an call it analog sell type writers and you
know records and turntables and -- [laughter] all of that so i think as you know -- >> trombone. a book coming out in which it is a selection of stories and he's a collector of typewriters and each story has a typewriter a different typewriter that is central element in the story. that will be on september. and then another person paul who -- is marvelous called four, three, two, one, paul writes all of his books on a typewriter and 900 page, and so i think he probably wore out two or three -- i think you probably were out two or 300 luster in the magician david blaine and we also brought in sophie auster, paul's daughter. we get a break a celebration for apollo 70th birthday as well. >> are libraries analog?
>> if they are selling books they are. libraries to me are those things that we need to support in greater numbers because libraries are the places thatos young readers and almost a place of entry for people who want to read. it's also very democratic. he knows about when carnegie started his library. it's kind of the foundation of t democracy to get people who aren't able to purchase and to go win and get a book for free. >> why did you call your book about andrew carnegie all see you in? th the center of the book is the partnership the richest men ind the world and somebody who wasn't too far behind him.
data terrible falling out and towards the end when they were both sick, carnegie friend his butler down the street from fifth avenue to now the great museum in new york with the note that said there getting up there in the years, perhaps about toge meet their makers. should make it together and patch things that before they died. racks response was to the god, so carnegie once to meet you? you can tell me i'll meet him in where we are both airheaded. that's the title of the story those -- libraries that carnegie founded around the world a thousand of them and several hundred still in operation and all of the ones in pitts bring particularly full. absolutely full of kids, elementary school kids many of
them who were going to computers there they didn't have access to it at home but just as many with a pile of books around them doing books for school and gave me help that libraries found a way to connect and stay relevant and to the 21st century. those place were jam-packed i'll tell ya. >> we've got a microphone in the audience and raise your hands and get to you after we hear from everett in sedona, arizona. go ahead. >> hey, i have a question i don't want to keep you too long. but -- it's pretty isolated out here living in sedona there isn't even a bookstore here, and i -- i had a professional life in advertising and i've made a move into writing, and my one question is, is there any value to self publishing is there, is
that like spitting in the wind or is there something to that? to go that direction? >> everett do you have a library in sedona and do you frequent it? >> yes, we do there's the sedona library and i'm there a lot. >> sir, thank you for calling in let's go right down the panel and let's hear. self-publishing. >> we know the example of "fifty shades of grey" that worked out -- [laughter] in that instance the shack sell published coming out it can happen but look being struck by lightning. >> but the odds -- you might learn something about by self-publishing you might discover whether or not there's an audience that you didn't suspect. it's the long shot way to go because the difficulty in self it is democratic allows you to get out there and publish your book but real question becomes how do you draw attention to your book once it is on the
internet and -- boy, i don't know u enough about those marketing efforts to say. but that fills me with dismay. the prospect of how do you -- well once you put it up how do you get people to find it? >> i agree wasn't bridges in madison county as well self-published at first. the version -- what was that, maybe i'm wrong. >> a long time ago. but i don't remember. >> yeah. there are as he said you can become a multimillionaire like -- you know. "fifty shades of grey." but i think a better -- rout something they can't interest an agent is to go the contest rout where many small -- that have contest or manuscript poetry or short fiction and you know to go that rout perhaps first because i think what you're up against is what he said.
is there's so many books being published and so many books published by established publishers that still don't get seen and don't get marketed in people don't learn about that you're really -- setting yourself up for obscurity perhaps. >> before we hear from mr. kaplan have either of yoif as authors thought about self-publishing? >> no, i haven't. no. that's a -- a tough game but i've always accepted the fact that i've -- if i can't break in, then i -- work doesn't merit it. >> let's go -- i agree with everything what they said. but i would add to that is as a writer you have to ask what your purpose is. if your purpose is just to get something out, maybe so that you can document an experience that you had then maybe it's very
those in your family or those people who are you know in your broader community then self-publishing might be the way to go. if it is to make money maybe it's not. and only other thing i would say is left out something important he wrote a book about a guy who did self-publish that became a gigantic self-publisher man who nchted christmas about charles dickens writing of a christmas carol. christmas carol was the great self-publish book that is almost sold more copies than just about any other book, and only difference was there that he had five booings that had proceeded at some of which had published more -- sold more copies than any book ever had previously. and he had basis on which to build. >> but we have to create excitement about this. but there's more to this story. >> we did a movie based on that
book so you can't really -- too much. that was a very big, major to do if >> i'm trying to be a self-help in se done know. but yeah wait until november comes then. you see this movie. did -- ... we really hope that not only did charles dickens bush one of the most successful self published books, but we hope that it leads to one of the most successful movies ever to have been made. >> how tough it is business? there was a time when charles into a dirty published five
books couldn't get a christmas carol published. think of it. >> ana menendez, is charles dickens important to read today? >> i think so. i remember reading a christmas carol. i must admit eight years old before christmas. i else i read 1984 and made t. 94. >> they renamed it 2017. [laughter] i think so. you know, we have these discussions about the dead white males and shippers to be reading them. i don't see this as an either oh comer greediness and either or. i see reading as an ant. you read that can send you read,
you know, suing time. and so, yes, there's a lot that he can teach you as a writer i think. ask him so many years i don'tbev believe insane these people don't speak to us anymore. a maybe it'll speak to everybody. but you may find yourself spoken to by somebody who seems irrelevant now. >> to have a question here in the audience? anybody? hi. tell us your first name. >> i married. >> hi, mary. >> hi. question for les. how do you decide on a particular topic to write about? >> thank you that's a great question and it's always -- i have always drawn i think as paul harvey was feared around
the field radio program where he will tell you the rest of the story. he always picks someone famous. if you understand this is about george washington and you did know that, did you? i'll be back in a couple of minutes to tell you the rest of the story. and he loved to revitalize. the whole point was to get people interested in george washington as a person again by going after some name that had not been made much of, oakland still and harleys mind important. well, that's what i look for. one big story out there to people not know everything about. that's a tall order and it takes time.s i keep looking and i keep looking and sometimes the charles dickens story came from one of those on the anniversary of the publication.
then i realized charles dickens had to self publish a christmass carol and several other questions about it. did i know charles tickets is broken and ready to quit? the answer was no. so i don't remember who sent me that e-mail. i'm sure i'm going to hear from them now. [laughter] but i immediately thought it had been taken. i went looking for the book and the book was there. sag, i've got an idea and away i went. the carnegie team came from ig was there to lead mentions on fifth avenue. everyone knew carnegie was the richest guy in the world, but did they know pms guy had actually come to fisticuffs in their office every bit as steel.
but finding out that there is material they are about a larger-than-life figure in that inaction that people haven't heard about before. [inaudible] >> could you repeat that? >> start your search. >> how do i start the search? i just cast a wide net. the dickens story found me. as i'm finishing up work on another book, i say to myself, what is next? i am working on now a book about the struggle for the power to control the circus industry. another gilded age story. our numbers daily pursuing lay, which came to me because my wife showed the aflac on a hotel
ground at a ritz-carlton naples, florida that said teaching job wrangling once owned by spot of land? i said of course not. who would've ever thought the circus guy on a plot of land? it turned out he was a titan of his time and forget the circus. i was saved money for a fortune i never knew about. it is like that. >> while we are getting the microphone to the next person in the audience, let tear from michael in pasadena, california. these go ahead. you're on booktv. >> hi, i've read -- but then ia rad white trash, which is a history of discrimination and the class structure in this country from colonial times all the way up to the present.
that an extraordinarily interesting book if you want toy know why the south with respect to the north of the discrimination which has taken place.s not just against black people, but we know that with indigenous. but also against white people and how that exists today. the other book i've been reading and disappearing formative book as well is washington's farewell address. and not, washington days the united states. that is to say is the country, three times. once the revolutionary war and twice as he became president at times when this country could do these really have fallen apart. the interesting thing that i take away from all of these books essentially is essentialla
how people, the supreme courtia justice who believe in originality know very well that there is no such thing as originality, but what they arere really doing is they are worried about going out that the balance of the constitution. so they've been sent to this thing about knowing what was int the mind of the founders and pretending it's even relevantto. today. so there's my take away from those three books. all have been on booktv. thank you. >> yes, they have. thank you for that, michael. and a comment for that color? >> i just saw that white trash has been wildly successful. found its readership. >> mitchell kaplan, did you notice that ticket sales after november 8th? >> absolutely. we noticed an uptick
particularly in sales of folks dealing with some of the issues that the campaign about. in fact, it reminded me of a book i wanted to point out. i had just seen this motioneen h picture and it's a, a documentary called i am not yout and it's really taken from all that tax to james baldwin. so this film and this book really does bring back -- take you back to the time when baldwin was such an intrinsic part of the national discussio in the 60s and early 70s and tells you how relevant he is today as well. these are the kinds of books that have been telling after the election as well. >> what about art of the deal? have deal? have any idea about that and have you seen an uptick in sales question are
>> we do have it for sale. i think it's in the fiction section. [laughter] i'm kidding, i'm kidding, i'm kidding. art of video i have not seen a big uptake of it frankly. certainly tony schwartz did all he could do to promote it in one way or another. but you know, it's probably a book we should all read to get an insight into our president today i would think. but i didn't see it very uptake although it didn't sell quite a bit more. >> ana menendez. >> have i read it? no. i read tony assures peace on his regrets in "the new yorker." but mitchell is right, it is something we should read. i just don't know if it is him or if it is tony assures sir to make believe to miss making,
which is also the word to now. >> i remember looking on it at the time. again, i really didn't know enough about the subject matter to be able to discern for myself whether this is done back are based on donald trump's opinion. since i'm not a business man, i said this book is not for me. but i remember looking at it. >> when the book came out it is a big, big bestseller. my kids were in preschool at the time and it helps get them through it. insert like, no one knew donald trump as the character and figured that he is today backumt then. they thought of him really as with the book said it was. in fact, that book probably started more than any books i can think of.
jane fonda's workout book started the whole workout book craze. in his book, the art of the deal really didn't start to a large extent because of how well it holds. >> we've got another question. and so yet. >> he we are sitting in a bookstore, i thought i would ask that question from the caller about self-publishing. we think of this question, which i'm wondering about. the other panelists can weighwa in. for people in talented cities that have lost their bookstores, i am just wondering obviously there is to be human and we all know about where we could go online and order books and they are delivered the next day. but so quick and easy, then just wondering specifically for
people around the country who may be watching that now because there are ways to support local bookstores of independent bookstores throughout the country and maybe offers than site about ways to kind of be involved. you mentioned in the next. that is one thing. i'm just curious. i think that your discussion about books toys becoming community oriented places, for people that don't have access to does, how can they reap the benefits? >> i think i would like to broaden it just a little bit.ro that is i firmly believe that independent bookstores, we are all businesses than it does to a larger issue of how we are to support our miss in the communities that we live becaust so often small businesses buy
online retail by then anything else. there have been stories to show every dollar spent locally is expanding for $5 on the internet and the money stays in thelars community. people get jobs in the community. people who have small businesses usually buy their supplies from other members of the community. so really, what i say about independent books are his applies to small business asto l well. after home, after work, where do you go? you go to the local bar, local restaurant, beauty parlor or shot. that is really, really hard to create a sense of community. it goes to what we were talking about before, which also goes to civic engagement. the more cynically engaged the wire.
and then we cannot get back to hillbilly apology with this notion of how diverse we are as a society. the more we get to know one another, the more we are able to talk to one another about issues that matter cannot be in our own little silos as well. that is what a bookstore does probably better than most otherb kinds of places.he if you are in a place that doesn't have a bookstore, what can you do? well, it's hard.d. one of the things he could do is think about starting a bookstore. books are is their starting. it's really amazing.g. i go to the industry meeting now and i used to be the kid. obviously i'm not anymore. there are kids who are my age when i started 25, 26 who are now starting bookstores in faraway places like athens, georgia, small towns in missouri and small towns in indiana.thesr
.. bookstores starting. places that you would not think, you think would be over bookstores like brooklyn. they now have a million new bookstore starting.new jersey and other places. so yeah, i think it is a very viable kind of thing for younger people to think of as an institution. and one way of doing that would be to get involved with the american booksellers association. there are ways that you can learn how to do it. and you know, i am always asking for advice. and a piece of advice i was give to a bookseller in miami is misread by the building that you open your store. something i never learned. [laughter] someone asked me what have you learned as a bookseller in miami? and i say i learned i should have been a realtor. [laughter] and but anyway, there are ways in which you can ma about the online presence of booksellers. you want your books to sell on
amazon, don't you? >> yes of course. you want your books to sell. tried to sell them at books and books. about the elephant in the living room, when i was living overseas, living in istanbul and in time and in five years in the netherlands, i always was afraid to tell mitchell, i really lived with kindle. it was only way to get the new releases, for me, primarily, i said this at a panel somewhere that i primarily a reader before i am a writer. a writer. we have panelists that are real writers that were kind of shocked but i really am at my happiest as a reader. and not having access to that was really difficult.
i wanted to keep up my reading so i do want to state that. i'm grateful that there is another option. >> in the future we will go wherever you go. wherever you are. [laughter] >> thank you, follow me around. that said, you know echo everything that mitchell said about the need for civic engagement in this idea of rejoining the world that so many of us abandoned. part of this is to come back. and you make these happy finds of about the indignity wanted. and you run into people who can give you recommendations and challenge you. and that is really important for all of us to do. and book bookstores are the place that really make that happen. it brings us the news. >> i want to say, the kind of thing, kind of mission that we
are on is to do things like this. it is a wonderful book called hearts of men. this is a book most people would not know about. but we're going to have an event with him. thank you, we are going to have an event with him in about three weeks here at the bookshop. it is a marvelous book. you know beautifully rendered, beautifully written. it is a coming-of-age narrative and nobody would know about this book but for the fact that we are going to do an event here at the store. that we will be featuring it and this is the job that we have is booksellers which was to introduce new authors to people. and to make a selection so that customers coming into the store can bump into these. i didn't mean to take your time on this discussion. >> while mitchell brought over stacks of books and he'll get through them one way or another.[laughter]
>> i feel for the caller from sedona who says we have no bookstores here. i'm glad you found out that they could access the library. at least that, because i think back over the last 35 years about how, with great gratitude about how important, how much a part of mileage books and books is. how much time i spend here, how much of my connection to a cultural world comes through this place. i am very fortunate, amazingly fortunate in that regard. i have a book, a new book out from which this has always, this is always a place to launch. and the people that come, to be able to make that one-on-one connection and the theater, that doesn't happen on the internet. there is no way to re-create that. so thank you mitchell.thank
you very much. >> i would also have to say that although we are independent booksellers we do believe in the ecology of all bookselling. and the internet does have a place for that. as you the chain bookstores. like i said libraries, there is this - but i believe that you know, one should not overtake another. in other words, there is a role. a really and portal for independent booksellers you have. i also believe these others need to exist in order to service people who are in places where there are not bookstores. >> so if your books and bookstores curated different at the airport -- >> yes they all are. we have all of these different stores in miami and some even we have a store in the cayman islands as well and they are all very different. we treat them all that they are in their own communities.
the managers have the ability to bring whatever they want. we have staff selections and you can really feel like you are in different stores by going into the different books and books stores as well. they are not cookie-cutter at all. >> by a show of hands of any of the people here attended a book taught by an author you had never heard of and he just wanted to see what it was about? has anyone here, has anyone here been to books and books before to attend events regularly? there we go. there we go. and we will come back to the audience for another question after we hear from lauren in sellwood florida. hi lauren, please go ahead. >> hi. i have been doing the show very much and i wanted to ask anna menendez a question about her book and about the joke that she referenced. since i have been on hold, i have been saddened. i have been saddened because
the conversation has turned political. and you know, i am a conservative and i love books. and i live bookstores. and i don't understand why you would want to make people feel unwelcome in a bookstore or in your bookstore. i'm sorry if i have put a damper on that but i cannot help it. it really bothers me. >> lauren, thank you for calling in. ana menendez, first of all - she wanted the joke but then, if you would all adjust the issue at she raised. that she felt unwelcome. >> i think mitchell made the point that this is a safe space for everybody. and i think that is certainly true. and i have a lot of conservative friends and conservative family who love the bookstore and i see them here. and they feel welcomed here. so i do not think that is an
issue. outside of the facebook page. >> it turned political only because we've been talking personally.but in terms of the bookstore, we present authors of all different types at this bookstore. and -- we even have some very conservative people working in the bookstore. we honor everyone who comes in. we were just talking personally and if we offended you, i am terribly sorry about that. >> so is sellwood close to miami? so if lauren comes down to the store - >> i would love to have a cup of coffee with her. >> call me up we will have coffee. the joke, to go back to politics briefly, a lot of my deduction i was a registered republican. not a lot of people know this. i was first registered as a republican and my first vote was for george bush junior.
obviously a lot has changed but a lot of my misgivings about the new administration goes back to things that i heard my parents say in things that i've learned about. about a hemorrhaging takes over and how freedom of expression begins to be curtailed. and so i misgivings are actually rooted in my own history and in my parents history. so i will say that we do not have to agree on that but that is my, that is where i'm coming to my politics. but now a joke. it is a very old joke and i told it once to a group of. this was when i was in india. i told her to a group of people in india and they laughed uproariously. and then they said that they had the same joke. this is a little dog, and little mutt comes up the boat
from cuba. he is walking around the streets of miami and enjoying the view and a french poodle walks by and because he is a cuban dog, he has to start complementing and say, oh you are so beautiful and are you from around here? i love the way you want. and she looks down her snout at him and says do you have any idea who you are talking to quake you are a mutt and i am a french poodle. i am a breed of distinction. and so the little mutt sort of is temporarily speechless. and then he says oh well, here i may be a mutt but in cuba i was a german shepherd. [laughter] >> les standiford what have you heard from this discussion?
>> as a writer i think you have two, when think what is said most eloquently you have to be capable of holding two diametrically opposed concepts in your mind at the same time and then when you sit down to write you have to be able to write characters who might be opposed in the same way diametrically. no matter what you believe in order to write compelling fiction or a worthwhile story for that matter. i would not have enjoyed spending very much time. i think with either andrew carnegie or henry clay. but if i were able to inhabit each characters persona at the time i was writing about their part of the book, nobody would have been able to, i think read that book or have founded
anything but propaganda. and no matter what, all of this, i have tried and done my best to become that person to get in the head of the person that i can barely fathom as they are delivering the state of the union address that say. it would behoove me as an artist to try. i am an artist. i'm not a politician and i'm not a businessman. and that's what i have to do in order to write good fiction. obviously when i write the fiction or vibrate nonfiction narrative, my politics are going to come through. my empathy's are going to come through. but i'm always trying to do justice for the other side. i have to. i shouldn't be doing this otherwise. >> can i say one last thing?
and how does like to say that i think one of the things she addressed was about this program tonight. and i have to say that i'm a veteran watcher booktv and watch what you do. and i think in booktv that is in seemingly fair in terms of presenting all different sides of what is being published. and i think publishing itself, publishes from every different point of view. there is a point of view that i think is left out. in publishing. i think that the service that you provide through booktv is something that is enough existentially for our own industry to survive. and i want to thank you and i you and eastern time zones you s can reach us at 20-748-8201.
we also have an audience for the discussion books and reading any young lady with a question in the back. tell us your first name. thank you for being here.this is fantastic.unfiltered politics, unfiltered everything. the only thing that you need is scotus. we need scotus televised. that's all i want to say if you can try. let us know what we can do. >> i will say, we do not offer many opinions at c-span but we agree with you 100 percent. [laughter] mitchell kaplan, i asked you this earlier and hope you answer this. in this room at books and books, is this what your living room looks like at home? [laughter] >> a little bit. to my wife's chagrin. but i was telling you earlier
that in the 35 years i do not think of myself as a book collector. but i am a book accumulator. and i have accumulated lots of books. you know, being a bookstore owner is a terrible tease. because they are somebody wonderful books that have come out every single year. and there is no possibility that i can read everything that i want to be. i feel like i'm on that lucy arnaz thing where there is nothing that goes by and the chocolate factory and you start grabbing everything. that is kind of what i do. i grab everything i might want to read and it is backed up in my house. and also i was just sort of browsing what i had and i picked up. - i'm a basketball fan and i pick up something on the dunbar basketball team. was people probably don't know
is the greatest high school basketball team ever. it had five players that went on to the nba.including muzzy and others. and i just happened to pick it up and read it and it was fantastic. so that is kind of the way that this scattered approach to accumulating books is what goes on with me. >> for your parents readers? >> i grew up in my room. i will not forget, you made member the old quickbooks series. my parents had it almost like an encyclopedia. had every one of the great books. and they left it in my room as a middle school kid and i remember picking up robinson caruso and all the other things. this really did come from them i believe. >> ana menendez, did you grow up reading? >> yes. and we grew up reading lots and lots of books. when we went to the mall, the
first place would go to dalton's. then also went to libraries in the night ended up in other places. but that said, i remember i read everything. i read all the time. in the trees you know and in my room and i read, one of the books that had a lasting impression on me was robert cormier's i am the cheese. he is best known for the chocolate war. but the book that really affected me was i am the cheese. and it is a strange bucket alternated with a psychological questionnaire and then it is this kid whose parents have suffered some horrible events. and it's a big mystery. and when i finished reading the book, i was a basket case. i guess it was, i was maybe seven years older eight years old. and i just cried. for hours and days. and i was in bad shape.the
mother who was a leader. she said if you keep this up, this is going to be your reaction to books that we will have to stop all of this reading. [laughter] so luckily it did not come to that. but you know, books always did have that very strong effect on me. >> les standiford? >> i taught myself to read before i got to kindergarten because my mother read to me all the time. i love being read to. and i finally figured out, i would get her to repeat sentences and i would say that with that word means? so had this great advantage. by the time i got to kindergarten i could read the titles of the books and when the teacher would come to reading our, i could always say why don't we - and i would give the title or ask about one and the teacher would say, she
never really asked me are you reading?i always got to pick sneakily because of that. and my grandmother would never have gone to high school, was a great read herself. she had all of these books on her shelves. beautiful books, tom swift, i can still see the covers of these things. beautifully illustrated cloth covers. and i would read and step to 2 o'clock at night reading these things. with flashlights long after i was supposed to. and then every book and through - reading to me was i going to the magic show. and that is what, i was like a kid who wanted to be a magician. he went to the magic show and wanted to do the thing that he leapt so much. so that's why i'm sitting here right now, sitting in my grandmother's parlor reading those old books. >> mitchell kaplan.
>> obviously you cannot be in this business without thinking about it. and i immediately make that go away as fast as it possibly can. because i think in college i thought maybe i would write. and then i realized i did not have neither the patients or probably the talent to do it. but i respect writers so much. then i would have writers block immediately by sat down to try and write. but there are lots of interesting stories to tell over the 35 years. i feel like the luckiest guy in the world being a bookseller. and i have been able to meet you know the heroes that i grew up finding, the people that i found is heroes growing up. one story i would tell it does not happen anymore, but when i was a kid in elementary school you know the safety patrol that most elementary schools have?
my elementary school had something called a library patrol. we got little buttons and we will go to the library. and we would help the librarian out and we would talk about books that we read and one of the book ribs i think that i had ever been a part of. in fact it was in that library were discovered that john f. kennedy had gotten shot. the librarian came in and told us that that had happened. so i always had this connection that way. and i think it is something that more and more schools are to do early on to make that connection between relevance reading and the book and some particular way. >> and professor les standiford. any advice to that reader who does not know where to get started? >> you have to read and to copy the book that you love the most. good writers borrowed great
writers. no one will notice if you're copying shakespeare, trust me. -- but, so how do you think writers figured it out before there were creative writing classes? they read other writers and said, am going to emulate. i'm going to try and do what he or she did only a little bit different. and that i think, if you are in sedona and there is no bookstore and no creative writing classes, that is what to do.take the book that you love and essentially tell your version of it. >> ana menendez. >> i'm thinking about this. a great cuban poet ruth behar, ruth was telling me when people come to her and say what do i need to do to be a writer? to write poetry she would say
read more and write less. [laughter] basically. and i know, i set up this creative writing program at the university which is wonderful. and i miss them all tremendously. and one of the first things i did, the first. they just read. not even really writing. they start taking notes and doing things on their own. but i am not reading the creative output. i just have them read. i think that is the best advice. i mean that is how a lot of us. inspired from reading and just learning to do it. >> rita, you've been so patient thank you please go ahead with your question. >> thank you. c-span is just the most wonderful thing. the book weekend, i love it. thank you.
i called and with an innocent question about, and did not hear you talk about the topic but since then i would like you to answer, i have two more things i would like to comment on. one is, i do agree with lauren. i think we need to give this new president a chance. and she is just, what he is now is just the butt of a joke. and i just think that this is sort of like, he is like a substitute teacher and he goes into the classroom and all of the children are going, while that's not the way the other teacher you know our regular teacher does it. so we need to give them a chance. the country is in a lot of big problems and we do not have, i think it is really unhealthy the path you're going don't
know. -- >> linda? >> i do know what conservatives i can relate to what they feel like. what they are afraid to say out loud. what they think in this country now. it is really, d ? >> linda thank you for your point. i see mitchell kaplan. >> i am curious as to what linda is reading. that would be a really interesting thing. >> we would like to know what books you bought recently. >> i wanted to give mitchell a compliment. i am looking at the t.v. screen and seeing these beautiful books. click. >> we are all. >> i wanted to give mitchell a compliment. i am sitting looking at the
background and it looks like the most beautiful bookstore. these tall wonderful, i mean there's nothing better than tall shelves with books in them. and it just looks like the most beautiful. i am in california so i don't think i'll ever, i don't go to florida. but oh my gosh, it is gorgeous mitchell. >> linda we have a lot of people on the line we are going to have to let you go. i'm afraid we will not find out what she is reading. david's new book is coming on april called the american spirit. right there is some information for you. bill o'reilly. and coulter,, some conservative authors but often on the bestseller list. do they sell here in south florida? >> they do. we had a book signing with and coulter. she came in and sign books we had a big line going out the door. so there are markets for all of
those people. and bill o'reilly i think is one of the biggest selling authors around these days. with all of his series. and you know, it goes, it is a big country. there are a lot of books being published. there is a lot of interest that different people have. and there's no reason why, there is no reason why it cannot be big enough for everyone to be able to read something that they like. megyn kelly is another book that is recently published. and - >> did she come here for a book signing? >> she did not come to miami. but i would like to see more conservative authors coming to miami. they do not come as much to miami because they do not see miami as conservative as maybe a little further up the state. so, but over the years we have had just about every conservative thinker you can imagine come through. >> so new books that are coming out by politicians.
basically just want to know if these are important books, if these are books that you will read.elizabeth warren has a book, george w. bush come out with a book on veterans. chelsea clinton's book just came out on global healthcare. senators sheldon whitehouse on the environment, al franken is writing a book as well. and governor john kasich. are those important books? would you pick those up? and do they sell? >> well, you know - this is about every book. to be honest it is ultimately about the writing. it is ultimately about the book. it is really not about you know, the genre or about you know, is it someone's position paper. it is how the story is told that makes a book sell or not sell. that is different than whether or not there is an autograph in going on.
so if someone doesn't autographing you want to meet the person more or less handled by the book in order to meet them. but whether or not someone would pick of john kasich's book, which is a position of some sort. i do not know. barack obama's book sold because they were well written. there were accounts of a person's life.george bush's first book that he wrote. >> turning point? >> that sold really well because it was the account of how he viewed his presidency. the same with bill clinton's first book. so those are the times, it is an important book and people will buy. summary people get caught up in the genre. know what trend you know what are people buying way you know it is really about the book. it does not matter what genre it really is.
>> do we have another question here in the audience? be point for the mike and we will take this call from jerry in hialeah down in south florida. jerry, you are in booktv. go ahead. >> good evening. i would like to ask a question to each of your panel members may be hypothetical. if you were each given a manuscript of books and you are not familiar in any way with the material, and you are not told who the author was, could you tell if that book was written by a male or female? >> why do you ask that question jerry? >> i wonder if there such a thing as a male or female style. if there was at one time or if there still is now. >> les standiford. >> no, no way. number i mean statistically speaking, you might say, i used to be a mystery writer. and people used to say that there were no feminine mystery writers. i only like to read the
hard-boiled stuff and you know, no women do but i don't think that is true anymore. particularly since, as the word has gone out about and you know, as the world has gotten smaller. i don't know. i do not think there is those books you listed a moment ago, do i think they're important? yeah, but i'm a storyteller. the nonfiction i write has to have a store in it, a beginning, a middle and the end. it's not about the subject matter. is there a story you haven't heard before. all those books, unless someone said this is a great narrative of how we came to hold these opinions, how we started off akn liberal and became conservative. i might read that book. how did that happen to you? i just want to read stories, and so politics --politi >> ana menendez?
>> no, you can make assumptions and in some cases you might be right, and in some cases you might be wrong. i'm thinking of an unnecessaryse woman. reminded of the author. -- reminded me of the author. i forget the authors name, but basically it's from the point of view of a woman so you might get this manuscript and say obviously a woman wrote this and you would be wrong. >> you make of this manuscript and they will obviously woman wrote this. and you would be wrong.there are many many books and this is the first one that jumps out at me right now because it is the most recent one i read but there are many books that you can make assumptions about and be wrong.
i gave it to mrs. jones, my fourth grade teacher. and she said very good going. you keep at it. >> i wasn't planning to publish. i wish his writing for the pleasure of it, and it found its place. >> mitchell kaplan, i am so sorry we did not get to your whole stack of books over there. come to books and books and you'll see his books, stack over there. thank you for being our host this evening. we appreciate it. and menendez, les standiford, thank you both. thank you all. [applause] >> this week on q&a, pestering david mccullough on his book the american spirit, who we are and what we stand for.
>> the 20th century center who has been written about the most is joe mccarthy. >> there's a dozen books about mccarthy yet there is no biography of the senator who has the backbone to stand up to him first. margaret j smith. >> do you remember how you went about preparing for that speech? >> hardest i've ever worked in anything i've ever delivered from a podium. >> david mccullough on his book the american spirit, selection of the speech is going back to 1989, sunday night at eight eastern on c-span's q&a. >> coming up in about ten minutes treasury secretary steven mnuchin and white house budget director mick mulvaney will speak at the institute of international finance policy summit in washington d.c. we will take you there live when it starts. but first a look at the freshman class of the 115th congress.