JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Buying my own books

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Weird situation. Lately I’ve been coming home each day to a mail pile containing bulky packages. I open them, full of hope, and they’re almost always my own books.

Yawn.

I’ve been ordering copies of The Bad Guys Won! and Love Me, Hate Me (No. 504,064 on Amazon, b—-!) off of Amazon. Always used, never pay more than, oh, $2 per copy. I do this because, when a book comes out, the publishing company usually provides an author with anywhere from 20 to 40 copies. My contract stipulates 40, which sounds like a lot. But then—it happens.

Can I have one?

Sure.

Can I have one?

Sure.

Can I have one?

Uh, who are you?

Your wife’s sister’s uncle’s cousin’s brother’s niece.

Sure.

In that case, how about two?

The biggest depletion comes via charities. I’m not complaining about this part, because it’s cool and righteous and meaningful. But if I had a dollar for every time someone wanted a signed book for this auction or that raffle, well, I’d have at least, oh, $45! Maybe more.

Hence, I inevitably run out of books. then I go to Amazon, order them used, have them arrive in crap condition and think to myself, “Maybe I should just set some aside.” But I never do.

And round and round it goes …