Remembering Ivan Doig

The Daily News Online

I think it was the fall of 1977 or the spring of 1978. We had opened the Bookloft in Enterprise in late 1976, and were going to our first “trade show.” It was in a Seattle hotel, and there were tables and tables of books—books recently published or about to be—with publishers’ representatives standing behind their wares and offering special deals…. if we would just order so many books.

And there were authors’ appearances. Over the course of a weekend a dozen or more authors read briefly and talked about their new books, and we booksellers, new cloth book bags in hand and already filled with publishers’ catalogs, stood in line after the appearances for free autographed books.

Ivan Doig was an unknown at the time—still making a living as a journalist as I recall. But he was good, and I stood in line for him, and made it to the front before Harcourt Brace & Read The Article

Something for the Birds

I finally got a copy of the movie, which was based in part on a story by Alvin Josephy, and stars Victor Mature as a Washington D.C. lobbyist and Patricia Neal as a bird lover on a mission to save California’s giant condors. The movie is nicely done—I particularly liked the old guy who passes himself off as a retired admiral and goes to all the big parties and receptions in town. In fact he works in a print shop that does fancy invitations, and, over time, follows the invitations he engraves to the parties. And of course becomes the lovable yentl in the romance between the lobbyist and the bird lover.

But the title and the movie say it all as far as Alvin and Hollywood are concerned. At least that is what I gather from recollected conversations and what he wrote about Hollywood in A Walk Toward Oregon. After the War, he had come to Hollywood thinking Read The Article