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Notable New     Yorkers
Select     Notable New Yorker

Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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man from upstate New York, who wrote this book more or less as a joke. It was an immediate, overwhelming success. There was great speculation as to who Warner Fabian really was. We kept the mystery going for a long, long time. I had a girl up at Vassar at that time, and she demanded to know who Warner Fabian was, and I made her absolutely swear that she wouldn't tell one soul. She gave me her word of honor, and I told her it was Rudyard Kipling. About a week later the gossip came back. Winchell wasn't around yet, but one newspaper man boasted in print that he had found out from an authoritative source that Warner Fabian was Rudyard Kipling. Of course there were screams of laughter. When I charged this girl with having spread this story, she indignantly denied it for about an hour, then finally confessed she had told one other girl.


That's the way rumors start! Did you realize while you were at Boni & Liveright that Horace was just living for the day?


No, I told you he had this extraordinary flair. He had an uncanny knack for getting bright young people around him. I told you at one time Lillian Hellman was there, Beatrice Kaufman, Louis Kronenberger, Manuel Komroff, Ted Weeks, Richard Simon, myself. These were all people who went places. They were on their way.


As far as you were concerned, did you think this was really the way to run a publishing house?

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