Thursday, October 09, 2014

Len Levinson Part Two

Available on e books

The survivors in writing are often more interesting to me than the stars who flame out and disappear.
William R. Cox the pulp writer died at ninety two at his typewriter. He'd never been a big star but he'd written pulps and paperback novels for sixty-some years. Ryerson Johnson graduated from the pulps into paperback originals and worked for almost fifty years. Margret Millar had never been a big seller but she finished two novels in the last four years of her life after beating lung cancer and being declared legally blind. Survivors.

Last year or so I became aware of a writer named Len Levinson. I'd seen his name on various blogs but not until I discovered Joe Kenny's truly unique and amazing blog Glorious Trash did I begin to learn about Len. Talk about a survivor. He's been working steadily since 1971 without getting either the promotion or recognition he deserves. Joe convinced Len to write about some of his books and in so doing Len has given us a finest record of the free lance fiction writer I've ever read. And not just because of the ups and downs of his writing career but also the ups and downs of his personal life. 

Len Levinson:

I worked in advertising and PR for ten years after I graduated from college, Michigan State University, class of 1961.  First I wrote direct mail letters and brochures for Prentice-Hall, a publishing company in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey.  Then I was pressbook editor for Paramount Pictures, which involved writing articles and feature stories based on information supplied by publicists assigned to movies being filmed.  Next I was pressbook editor for 20th Century-Fox, but soon was promoted to trade press contact, which involved writing daily press releases and dealing with reporters and editors who worked for publications like VARIETY, BOXOFFICE, MOTION PICTURE DAILY, FILM DAILY, and others that I don’t remember.  Finally I was a press agent with Solters and Sabinson, an agency that had many clients in the entertainment industry such as the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, Flip Wilson, Bob Hope, Benny Goodman, the Playboy Organization, all the David Merrick Shows, numerous movie clients, Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus, Holiday on Ice, Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, and others that I don’t remember.  I resigned my position at Solters and Sabinson to become a novelist.

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1 comment:

Stephen Mertz said...

Ed, thanks for this great interview with Len, who may not have gotten rich but he is getting some fame (or at least due respect) at long last from you & Joe Kenny. THE LAST BUFFOON is a great book. Len, I look forward to reading your works in progress.