The Good Life  
Jay McInerney
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Jay makes "the list" and is presented with a stolen copy of a manuscript he wrote (but never published).

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Hi, Jay here again, I just finished the west coast leg of my tour. I arrived in LA last Monday to find that not only was I #4 on The LA Times bestseller list, but I was two spots above the The Da Vinci Code. I think I'm going to have to frame that one. I didn't imagine I would find myself, however briefly, above The Da Vinci Code on any bestseller list. Anyway, it was a nice little welcome to LA I read at a bookstore in Beverly Hills, it was called Dutton's. The whole west coast leg brought home the fact that people really come out of the woodwork for these things, including Bret Easton Ellis. But he lives in LA and he's always coming out of the woodwork.

I had a very strange reunion with a guy I met many years ago in Milwaukee, who subsequently decided to make a pilgrimage down to my then house outside Nashville, TN, a little farm that I had with my ex-wife for a number of years. In fact, by the time he arrived there the house was up for sale and we were not in it. Apparently he took the liberty of, well I guess he broke into the house, and he managed to discover an unpublished manuscript of mine. A manuscript of an entire novel that was in one of my drawers, we hadn't exactly moved out yet. He somehow felt he was rescuing this manuscript, this was five or six years ago. So for the past five or six year this guy from Milwaukee has been in possession of this manuscript which in fact would have been my third novel if I had published it. I wrote it, put it aside, and I think wisely decided not to publish it. Suddenly, six years later, Matt, the man in question, shows up with my manuscript and also a bottle of 1985 Dom Perignon, which he bought for me around the same time. It kind of took the sting out of it and I was kind of amazed and happy to see my manuscript. And I was very happy to see Bret there. I don't think Bret has ever been to one of my readings. Afterwards we went out to dinner at Spago.

I was traveling with my girlfriend Anne, which made the whole LA/San Francisco experience a little better, a little more bearable. In San Francisco I ran into an old old old friend who was my waitress for many years at an old New York institution called The Lion's Head, an a number of other old friends and acquaintances. In Seattle, the highlight was probably the lunch with the people from Amazon. Who would have guessed there are actually people at Amazon? But there are, very nice people, Daphne, Tom, Brad, Sarah, Terry. The people who make that whole thing run. We had a very fine lunch at my hotel, the Alexis, in Seattle. I gave a reading later at the university. And now I'm in Nashville. Tune in next time for my report from the south.

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