Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Travel Writer...

OK, another chapter on "MY BRILLIANT CAREER"...

Did you see that Australian movie or read the book? On a shoe designing trip to Spain, I took a vacation to Morocco.

I fell hard for the souks and bazaars, took loads of pictures

and dreamt of doing a coffee table book. Ever practical, I figured I'd better do a European flea market guide first. Since my shoe company was sent me to London, Paris, Rome I piggy-backed flea market research onto the shoe jaunt. The Mediterranean "book" would have to wait. First day out in London's Bermondsey Market, I met Graham, a free-lance dealer. He became my flea market research assistant. What did I know of antiques. The page shown is from a pull-out section for Mademoiselle magazine. Having no typewriter, I hand-printed everything...

Grossett & Dunlap saw the Mademoiselle article and asked me to make it into a book. Off I went to produce shoes with Graham along to explain silver marks and dealer tips in the flea markets on the weekends.

Here's a spread from the Paris Puce section..
Next I approached Mademoiselle on the souks and bazaars idea. They were thrilled! A book contract followed from Grosset. I'd earned my street creds and this time I got comped by all the tourist offices to do guest travelwriting in their countries - all expenses paid. I got comped in Turkey, Greece, Tunisia, Isreal. In Iran I joined a group of travel agents to eat my fill of pistachios and caviar. Pas mal. No "research assistant" for this project, so I used my imagination to come up with stories on the souks of
Tunisia, Morocco, Turkey, Israel, Greece, Yugoslavia, Iran.
The book went to "blues" (the first publishing test run used for correcting errors etc.) But
the Iran hostage crisis caused on the Med book to be shelved.
A US flea market guide was next. First for Mademoiselle and then a 3rd book for Grosset. But problems surfaced. I don't like driving, so it became all writing and little drawing.

Articles for Art News and others followed. Plus an illustrated column for a travel magazine. I accumulated a lot of antique junk in the process. But time to move on to another career.

To be cont.

18 comments:

  1. get out!
    you are so ***amazing***

    the ~Med book~ that went to ~blues~
    needs to be rediscovered and printed,
    even now,
    ESPECIALLY NOW...
    OK, maybe you might need to change
    the text a bit,
    BUT STILL...
    it might be used as
    AN INSTRUMENT OF PEACE,
    or something...
    peaceful shopping...

    if you ever make it to florida,
    i will drive you around,
    and be your **research assistant**

    :-)

    PS--it might cost you macarons...

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  2. How fascianting you are and your career moves......nothing like not moving in life in a straight line!

    I think there was a reason why you did not have a typewriter.....your imagination is your constant companion, Carol!

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  3. Anonymous9:27 AM

    I am speechless. You just keep amazing us. You have traveled far and wide in the Art's. Way to go.
    Cris in OR

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  4. I love it! Seriously, you ARE amazing. You just--get up and go with things! No holds barred on life. I love it.

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  5. I'm planning to go to Morrocco... would love to have that book. Your public demands the publisher give it another go. (OK, that might not be the best approach with a publisher, but I'd buy a copy!)

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  6. Thank you PATSY and EVERYONE!
    Grossett & Dunlap is no more sadly. I'm just parading here my past lives..there are so many :)

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  7. foodwalker3:52 PM

    Will you STOP!
    Too, too much
    Too talented too :)
    Annie

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  8. you have had a seriously diverse and fun life so far, and worn many hats. :)

    I love that, for me, even in business, if it stops being fun, it's over. who knows what's around the next bend??
    Lidy

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  9. Love your drawings of the Babouche.
    All I can say is your the best.

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  10. I LOVE this type of book. I will be happy to collaborate you sometime on such a fantastic project.

    And the 47 cent price on Amazon - none left! I just spent $12.65, a price that is well worth it!

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  11. ooh - forgot to say that my friend is going to Morocco in October and I'm giving her the book!

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  12. A lovely idea - and perhaps there is an opportunity to do such articles but on textile treasures for Selvedge magazine (www.selvedge.org) who do travel items. I write for them from time to time, and the editor is Polly Leonard (editor@selvedge.org).

    In one of my past lives, in the early 80s I wrote a leaflet on Lovely Loos in London, but unfortunately it was text only.

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  13. I love when you open your bag of magical tricks and adventures.
    What will you pull out next to share?

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  14. what a sweet little tour.....love the sketches of toys

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  15. You wear me out. How can you pack all this into one life. Are you sure you haven't been reincarnated??

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  16. how many lives we lead! yours is wonderful and so is your work. i'd be happy to assist you anytime!

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  17. Your article is amazing.
    I was in Morocco 5 years ago, your article and your pictures made me to remember all memories and impressions about this fascinating country. thanks ,good job!

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  18. Inspirational! I've wanted to do something like this for the area I live in. Now I just have to give myself a kick up the derierre and do it!

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