Saturday, February 28, 2015


Had at once a good and bad experience today, reading a bit of my novel, SILK LADY, which they expected at Warner Books would be a big hit, and wasn’t.  They dropped support of it immediately when it didn’t get the action they thought it would, all except for a couple of TV hostesses who had me on and were sassy.  I was stunned today at how good it was, and don’t imagine I could write anything like that again.  Real instances of sharp experiences were in it, transformed and with changed names, where the mistress of an Asian who owed a private club in D.C. where all the big, overpaid parties I attended actually jumped over a table and seized another woman by the throat.  I think it might have been me. 
      I fictionalized his name as Hiro Takeda, and don’t remember what it really was, but he was a Superstar in D.C.  Nobody was afraid to accept favors then, and everybody, or almost everybody, was ready to have a good time no matter what the cost was, as long as it wasn’t to them.
      The sister of Dear Abby, a darling woman was there, and as I remember, accepted an actual table to be sent to her home from whoever the man was—I will probably remember his name in the middle of the night when I remember a lot of things now, including my husband, Don, a truly adorable man, very much in love with me, the most generous blessing of my life, who could not stay long.  He died in 1984, very young and handsome, wracked with cancer and gone from the scene very quickly, sitting on the edge of the bed as I put on trousers to take him to the hospital, putting on glasses in the midst of his agony, to look at me and say “You look so cute.”
      “Oh, honey,” I said to him.  “With everything you’re going through, that you would stop to admire me.”
      He said: “But it’s true.  You can tell them for me, your friends on ‘the path,’ that you have made it to a whole new level.”
“Thank you,” I said.
“Don’t thank me,” said Don.  “You’re the one who did it.  I just gave you the opportunity.”
That’s who he was.  So anyone who thinks I was shortchanged because he wasn’t rich or powerful is really stupid.  I still miss him all these years later, special as he was and would have settled for no one else, including Cary Grant.  Oh, maybe Cary Grant, but only if he had Don’s soul.
I wrote SILK LADY while he was dying, and didn’t stop even when or maybe especially when we found out he had cancer—he was only 45—and think writing the book probably saved me from going completely insane, or at least more crazy than I am.  I am hoping there is really a Heaven, and have had frequent indications of it, and hope there is a library so he can catch up on how much I thought of him.  He really enjoyed my writing and was in love with me even when I when I was fat, which I was in the beginning of our relationship, going on a strict diet that was almost a fast so I could do better, which I thought I might if I met Cary Grant.  I did meet Cary Grant well into my marriage, and he really was Cary Grant, more charming and special even than you might have hoped or even more.  But so was Don.
But it’s strange and interesting, in a sad way, that SILK LADY didn’t happen, as it was really sharp and on the nose of all the bullshit that was happening in D.C. and NYC at that time.  Another novel was written a couple of years later on the same subject by the very successful but shallow writer whose name I can’t remember either.  I am having a hard time with names at this time, except for Cary Grant.  And, of course, Don.