Once a reporter…

… will remain a reporter for the rest of his life. It’s a chronic disease. You are invited to an event and you automatically start looking for the details behind what „everyone sees”. What could call for attention at a book presentation?

First the environment: usually an institution or association, coordinated by the town hall or county council and 1-2 companies (sponsors). What was different in Dej on February 24? The organizer was the author himself, Istvan Horvat, who simply invited us to a restaurant, accompanied by the publisher of the book, H. Szabo Gyula. Why did I notice this detail? As it seems essential to me, I was grateful that I was not forced to listen to 3-4 boring and pointless speeches by the officials present, based on protocol, on the contrary, the attention went straight to the book and its author, the main characters of the evening, but which in other circumstances he would have been lost among so many v.i.p.s.

 

Foto: Peti Luidort

Secondly, the meeting scheduled for 6 o’clock started at 6 and not „sometime, when the boss determines that it would be proper”, and this detail tells me that no „protector” was expected, who would have been upset if the event began before his arrival, an old weakness from the gallery of complex social relations. The editor contented himself with asking a few questions strictly about the book, did not present us, as usual, the entire editorial plan and did not come with 2-3 other books, maybe these will sell as well.

Detail 3: the book sold really well, proof that the guests came to buy the book and not for treats and other attentions, even if the meeting took place in a restaurant. On the tables, a few bottles of soft drinks that each of them bought from the bar. Did it work? Yes, here it did.

Detail 4: the supposed readers had an applied dialogue with the author who did not feel the need to bring „stars” from the capital, stars who usually do not read the book and only speak in generalities, but who, as some believe, give the event a shine. The political party that you would have expected to  campaign was also missing, as well as the church (Catholic and Reformed), and I want to tell you that this did not in any way hinder the success of the evening.

Foto: Peti Luidort

I can’t write anything about the book yet, it takes me at least a week to read a book, I admire those who have the exegesis at hand right at the start, I admire them but I don’t follow their example. I wrote these lines with the intention of arguing against the prejudice concerning the lack of interest in reading and reminding anyone that readers usually react to how authors behave in relation to them.

z.d.

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