Going Modern VS. Blowing My Hero (& Fencing With the Shadows)

mjp

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There is another thread here about Amber O'Neil's Blowing My Hero (well, actually, the thread is about Born Into This, which is why I started this new thread), wondering why it is so expensive when a copy comes on the market, and that discussion made me think of this:

goingmodern.jpg


This Oro Madre publication called Going Modern was printed in an edition of 500, but the story is the Bukowski was unhappy with the quality of the publication, so John Martin "suppressed" it, and most copies were destroyed.

Yet I see this thing all the time. For every copy of Blowing My Hero that comes up, I must see at least five copies of Going Modern. So what's the story? Anyone know if the bulk of these were actually destroyed? I wonder. Any documentation or correspondence between/from Bukowski or Martin on this?
 

cirerita

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I think I know as much as you do. Bukowski was unhappy with the "amateur" quality of the publication and, apparently, 90% of the material was destroyed.
 

mjp

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That would mean there are only 50 or so copies of Going Modern in existence, and I find that hard to believe, just based on the relative availability of the thing.
 

zoom man

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And what about Fencing With The Shadows?!,
Same thing,
It was supposed to be destroyed but I don't see any of them coming up?!
I have that Going Modern in Green leaves,... it wasn't that sloppy of a production.

"Going Modern" comprises vol 3 no2, a special chapbook issue of ORO MADRE Magazine (issn 0730-3475) published by Ruddy Duck Press. Freemont CA

Mine says 'Limited, First Edition
This is No.____ of 500
Copies, of which 1-25
Have been signed by
The author."

Oro Madre is edited
by Loss & Jan Glazier

It has one illustration by Buk,
One photo of Buk,
And 6 of his poems (uncollected?!, don't have the time right now to see)
-Endurance
-The Old helping the Old\
-See:Ending
-The Improbable Probability
-Garbage, and
-Going Modern


The pages that contain the poems are a real ugly
(help me here mjp)
...I don't know, like a pale-puke orange......
Nifty little ad for "All's Normal Here" at the end,
And the pic of Buk,
Ah,
He looks so happy
 

Jason

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Yes, MJP, you're right: it seems there are more copies of Going Modern available than would be if the issue was suppressed and destroyed.

As for Fencing..., it was destroyed by the printer, though I believe there are some copies around...
 

mjp

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zoom man said:
Mine says 'Limited, First Edition
This is No.____ of 500
Copies, of which 1-25
Have been signed by
The author."
Yeah, mine has the nonexistent limitation number as well.

Compared to All's Normal Here, which was published by the same guy, Going Modern *is* a crappy production. But no worse than a lot of other things Bukowski appeared in. Come to think of it, I see All's Normal Here (worth buying, by the way) for sale less often than Going Modern.

The story of the suppression and destruction just doesn't ring true to me. Until I see some documentation I'm sticking with my gut feeling that all 500 of these are floating around out there.

But I'll be happy to be proved wrong, since I own a copy. Of course, everyone else seems to own one too. ;)
 

Jason

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zoom man said:
And they are availble where?
Well, your own 'COA' states that 'some copies had been sent out'. The copy I have did not come from those sent out, so we can assume that there are 'some' copies around...

...And as Hank Solo pointed out, one is still available from you...
 

cirerita

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I thought that, too.

anyway, if you google "fencing with the shadows" there is at least one seller in the UK offering it right now. That makes 3 copies that we know of.
 

Jason

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cirerita said:
anyway, if you google "fencing with the shadows" there is at least one seller in the UK offering it right now. That makes 3 copies that we know of.
World Cat lists one library with a catalogued copy.
 

mjp

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Re: Going Modern, I've just been looking at another copy that is numbered, where the copies that zoom man and I have are not numbered.

gmNumbered.jpg
gmUnNumbered.jpg


My first thought was maybe they actually reprinted it later, but after a close comparison, I'd say both of these copies came from the same run (the paper stock is identical, it's even folded the same - slightly off, so the back section extends further out from the fold - bad bindery work. ;)). The only difference being that one is numbered and others aren't. Could be that they numbered them as they were distributed, before Martin pulled the plug, but that doesn't seem logical.

In any event, it still seems to me that all 500 of these are out there. But this is the first numbered copy I've seen. Weird.

I guess we'd need to hear from the publisher to get the real story.
 

cirerita

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well, as far as we know, Eric's, Jason's, that one in the university library and yours. That makes 4, right?
 

bospress.net

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Fencing with the Shadows

HI,
I know another 4 people who have one. Also, I assume that Nick LAwrence has one. He has multiple copies of every release, so I assume that he has this. I bought mine on ebay about a year ago. He would have paid any price to get it if he needed it.

Bill
 

cirerita

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that makes 8-9 copies, which means "some" copies survived somehow.

another Bukowski myth dispelled :D
 

bospress.net

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HI,
I would guess that there are probably not more than 25 copies around. If you take who you and I know and then assume that we don't know everyone. Also, there are probably a great many private collectors that have EVERYTHING. I can't imagine that they would be without this.

Either way, 25 or 4, it is painully scarce....

Bill
 

hank solo

Just practicin' steps and keepin' outta the fights
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Originally Posted by Jason
...And as Hank Solo pointed out, one is still available from you...

Originally Posted by Hank Solo
Huh? No I said Erik.

Originally Posted by mjp
I thought zoom man was Eric...
Oh yeah. zoom man is THAT erik6545 character. How confusing.

So, who's Erik? I am confused.
 

zoom man

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hank solo said:
Oh yeah. zoom man is THAT erik6545 character. How confusing.

I'm not sure what I think about being a 'character'.....
Maybe it's really cool,
And i'm really happy.....
And i'm just not sure yet.

Yes, I am erik6545 on e-bay,....
And I have more to say about that,
As long as I know that___________
Well, never mind
 

hank solo

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zoom man said:
I'm not sure what I think about being a 'character'.....
Maybe it's really cool,
And i'm really happy.....
And i'm just not sure yet.
Something funny happened to me last week.

This was in a pedestrianised shopping lane in my City Centre.

There I was just sitting on a bench, in the sun, eating a sandwich.

This rather bedraggled, worn looking fellow sauntered up to me and said

Can I just say something, youngman. And I'm from Yorkshire. But you look like a character.
Well, obviously I said "Oh. Okay."

Then he walked off. Well, it was the weirdest thing that happened that day at least.

Someone once compared a Yorkshireman to a Texan, in terms of their attitude and personality. I don't know what tha might mean though.
 

mjp

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jason & nymark, are your copies numbered?
I'm told by a reputable source that none of the copies were numbered by the publisher. A rare book dealer numbered some copies after the fact to make them more "desirable."

All 500 copies of Going Modern made it to the marketplace, so I think we can remove this from the list of "suppressed" titles. But fencing is definitely rare, seeing as the publisher destroyed the bulk of them himself before sending them to Martin.
 

bospress.net

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HI,
I agree. No copies should be numbered. As we know that they are numbered AFTER the fact, that would be considered a defect...

Best,
Bill
 

Rekrab

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Over 1000 posts
Wow. As rare as Fencing seems to be, it would be smart to buy it now even at a high price. Meanwhile, I'm counting pennies to buy groceries, so I won't be bidding. That's a great story about cutting them in half and including a crucifix. That's making a statement.
 
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