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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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and say, “Here you, you dumb cluck, who don't open three books a year, and you're working for a publisher! This was my dream, and what am I doing? I'm working in Wall Street.” Of course, it was my own choice. One memorable day, Dick Simon called me up and said, “You're always moaning about wanting to go into the publishing business. If you want to, I'm handing it to you on a silver platter.” He said, “I've decided to go into business for myself with Max Schuster. When I told Liveright I was leaving, he said, ‘It's a terrible time to walk out on me. I need you and the fall season is coming up. Can you suggest anybody to replace you?'” And Dick told me, “I said, ‘I have a friend who would be perfect. He was the editor of the college paper, he's Phi Beta, and he worked on the Tribune.'” He didn't tell Liveright how I ended there! Liveright said, “He'd be great if you could get him. I'd certainly like to meet him.” So that's when Dick called me up. He asked, “When can you come up?”

I said, “Any time.” Meeting Horace Liveright, a publisher! I'd never met a publisher in my life.


He's supposed to have been one of the most colorful people...


Oh, he was one of the most colorful people in the world.


What was he like?


I'll get into that. So the very next day I went up for

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