Kevin Brennan Writes About What It's Like

Front matter: the agony of inscribing books


This is funny stuff, and it brings back uncomfortable memories of wracking my brain to come up with individual pithy things to inscribe books with. Sure, for certain people you know well you can get coarse, suggestive, or even raunchy, like Karen Russell: “For Bill — You douche bag, you think you can emotionally manipulate me, a very nice person, into insulting you, by appealing to my niceness? Fuck you, Bill. You were right. Fuck you, dude.”

Oh how I wish I could have written something like that in Parts Unknown for some special so-and-so.

I like Stephen King’s too: “A dog as big as Cujo was nothing to get screwing around with. Not unless you wanted to spend the rest of your life wiping your ass with a hook.”

Any favorite inscriptions you’d like to share? Given or received?

And what’s to become of these things when the ebook takes over completely?

(Photo of a Mark Twain inscription via The Grems-Doolittle Library Collections.)

5 comments on “Front matter: the agony of inscribing books

  1. sknicholls
    June 21, 2013

    eBooks can now be autographed also. I forget the name of the company that does it.

    • Kevin Brennan
      June 21, 2013

      No kidding? I’ll have to look into that…

      • sknicholls
        June 21, 2013

        Somebody posted on it recently and I meant to write down the name of the company. Some people use a product called evernote to keep up with things like that…It is the only thing I don’t like about blogging. Trying to save pages. if I bookmarked every interesting page i’d go nuts.

  2. John W. Howell
    June 21, 2013

    I like “Thanks for not stealing this book.”

    • Kevin Brennan
      June 21, 2013

      Good one. Then I heard of one by George Bernard Shaw, who signed a book, “With esteem.” Years later he found that very copy of the book in a used book shop, bought it, and gave it to the original recipient with the inscription, “With renewed esteem.”

      Now that is suave.

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This entry was posted on June 21, 2013 by in Et alia, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , .
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