Artist and adult film star Zak Smith surveys the scene at Chelsea’s Fredericks & Freiser* last night during the release party for the book that isn’t called Gravity’s Rainbow Illustrated. In the background, you can see Rob Spillman, the executive editor of Tin House Books, who explained to me that Penguin‘s threatened lawsuit against the small press over the original title was “a huge boon to us.” You see, the first printing was in a PGW warehouse, ready to ship, when the legal hassles forced Tin House to put stickers bearing the new title on every copy. Thus, the books couldn’t ship until January, which means that the money for those orders isn’t tied up in the AMS bankruptcy proceedings…about $100,000 that would have been lost if the books had shipped on time. So the Penguin exec who got bent out of shape after seeing the initial press on the book ended up doing Smith and Tin House a favor. “And the additional publicity didn’t hurt,” Spillman smiled; in fact, they’re already gearing up for a second printing of Pictures Showing What Happened on Each Page of Thomas Pynchon’s Novel Gravity’s Rainbow next month.
*Warning: The gallery’s current home page is not only mildly NSFW, it will prevent you from ever being able to look at Blondie the same way again. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!