Linda Jacobs: Funny, Crazy, Upsetting Publishing Stories
My father died on July 11, 2005 without finishing the book. On his last trip to the hospital, he insisted on taking his copy along, though, calling it, "My most prized possession."
When he was laid out in the funeral home parlor, I went in alone with some final gifts. Waiting carefully until, Shirley, the gal from the funeral home, was out of sight, I inserted some family photos into the satin lining of the coffin. Last, I slipped in his copy of Summer of Fire.
Then I went to the bathroom to have a cry. Waited a while until my red eyes were merely pink and returned to the parlor.
Shirley was standing beside the coffin. She turned and I saw the book in her hands. My, God, does she have some kind of poblem with people putting things into coffins?
"Wh . . . where did you get that?" I quavered.
Shirley smiled. "At the bookstore," she said. "Would you autograph it for me?"