22 JUNE 1974, Page 20



When, a year ago, Bookend cast a disapprovia_t eye at publishers who did not appear to 0e, paying their authors on time, Mr Desinol Briggs wrote to suggest that a list be kePL°.! those publishers who not merely paid ta`.lej authors on the dot, but who actually Pal

before the dot. After looking hard and long, Bookbuyer has discovered some edifying cal

of publishers' generosity but has sadly fon,ar no publisher, with the possible exception of mf Briggs's own firm, with a regular habit 0 jumping the royalty gun.

There is, however, the unusual instance

Mark Kahn, the Sunday Mirror's genial literal editor who also knows more than a little abotl„,

motor racing. After writing a successful a;

count of the 1970 World Cup Rally for Na' he was invited by Gentry Books to Op something along similar lines. Kahn decided °„ an analytical account of major racing accidet1 in which drivers had all but lost their lives, decided to call it The Day I Died. Since Gel" Books were in their infancy, he said he Wati,;f not take the normal advance on signature, a", , yet the part due on delivery of the manuscl but would wait until the book was publish,ce

this September. He did retain the serial rigt;

however, and proceeded to sell them to Po'f own newspaper for a considerable sualo

money — a third of which he gave to

publishers who were managing, with a ga..,e deal of courage and determination, to suril', the tragic death of their founder Bryen Gentle It must be one of the few occasions outato vanity publishing when an author has pal 0f publisher a royalty before receiving a pea' his own.

Miss E. Mitchell of Chard in Somerset, late$f quite properly taken Bookbuyer to task 0,6 his report of Masius Wynne Willia(1154 research study. Attempting to discov'e whether the public were aware of some ofl.th. season's best-selling books, Masius had ed what was supposed to be a 'trick' titlelv order to fool eveyone. This was unfortunaAte'e reported both here and elsewhere as being 1, Heat of the Day which, far from being !de product of pure invention, is of course the of a novel by Elizabeth Bowen, published 1949 and based on the late Miss Bowalito experience in war-time London. Apologieseit all concerned. It just shows how ign°he Bookbuyer — and about 15,000 members 0, ' world book trade — can be.

An aberration by Bookend's sports corres1111; dent, who should clearly be relegated t°,hLot arts pages, caused gross injustice to `-fot glamorous team Granada Palace. Through ;re omission of two lines of text they W:01, described as being masterminded by "ort:e5" the younger breed of tracksuit manag`he whose "substantial bark is reckoned t°0 worse than his bite." Students of the world must have looked, blinked and dered. Surely this could not refer to the Itrt'io formidable sales chief Aleivyn Birch, less Ye'idi the ubiquitous editorial chief Jim ReY10 who was working away in Paternoster ;sof long before it was bombed to the grouno4 course not. The happy appelation was reserl'od for shy, self-effacing, soft-spoken Ecl'11,11 Fisher, manager of Michael Joseph Uniten.

Since bookend's report on the curious saser”ao. of an NUJ member from New English events have taken a new turn. Miss Lochis has been re-engaged. Let it be hoped that 'Oil is the signal for a little mature behavionr both sides.