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but it was too late. They had made up their minds before
he could plead his case.
Who took over finally?
We put a fellow named Pitkin in. Pitkin was the son
of the professor who wrote Life Begins at Forty. He had
been a professor of mine up in the Pulitzer School of Journalism.
Young Mr. Pitkin only lasted a little while. Then we
were lucky. We landed a knockout named Oscar Dystel who has
built Bantam up to be a huge paperback house. I guess it's
number one today.
Do you still have meetings together?
Well, everything went along beautifully for a long
time. Then came a time when all the other paperback houses
were doing originals. The Bantam boys wanted to follow suit.
At this, young Charles Scribner, who had long since superseded
his father, rebelled. He didn't like the profitable
paperback business even though he was an owner of about
one-twelfth of the Bantam stock. He didn't want to have any
part of it. Young Charles Scribner is one of the finest men
that I've ever met and most honorable--though I think he was
very foolish in this instance. He said that he wanted to
get out. All he wanted back was the money that his father
had put into the business. We said to him, “Charlie, if
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