Arguably one of the most enjoyable parts of the publishing process is receiving blurbs for your book. Aside from the contract with the publisher and notes from the editor, these mini-reviews are the first real responses you receive regarding your book's worthiness. And because blurbs (usually) come from individuals whose work you admire, they carry a lot of weight, both emotionally and intellectually.
Beginning with Neil Strauss, Everything Is an Afterthought's blurbers have been very kind. Though they're not all posted yet, you can check them out by clicking first on the book cover at kevinavery.com and then on the "More Praise" link. Conversations with Clint has only one posted blurb thus far, from the great critic Andrew Sarris. To read it, simply click on the book cover and follow the "Praise for Clint" link.
Yesterday we received the book's second blurb. This one came from Paul Nelson's old friend, the singer-songwriter Elliott Murphy, who resides in Paris, France.
It's fitting that this book's first two blurbs should come from Sarris and Murphy. Paul idolized Sarris and often referred to his criticism (especially the book The American Cinema: Directors and Directions 1929 - 1968) in his own work. And in 1973, Paul discovered Murphy and tried to sign him to Mercury Records. His Rolling Stone reviews of Murphy's first two albums are the most glowing notices an artist could ever hope to receive.
Here's what Elliott had to say about Conversations with Clint:
"Paul Nelson was the first serious film aficionado who, way back in the early 70s, turned me on to the importance of Clint Eastwood as an actor, filmmaker and American icon. He showed me the S&W Magnum .44 he kept under a pile of sweaters in his closet. ‘Same as Dirty Harry,’ he said, explaining that if he was going to write about men with guns he had to know how it felt in his hand. We were both devoted to F. Scott Fitzgerald and hoping that Clint Eastwood would play Gatsby in the upcoming film, which, of course, he didn't.
"The repartee between these two straight shooters is more revealing of the inner workings of Hollywood and the creative process of Clint Eastwood than anything I've ever read before."