Shakespeare and Company

Want to hear something stupid? I’m going to Paris next Tuesday. Want to hear something more stupid – even stupider? I’m going there with the intention of staying for free in a bookshop called Shakespeare and Company which houses young (and otherwise) writers. Apparently August is the worst time to try and stay there because it gets very full and the worst time to visit Paris in general as everyone is on holiday and those who aren’t on holiday are moody and hate you and spit at you. I don’t know where I’ve picked this information up from. It’s quite possible I made up.

The reasoning that lies (more cowers) behind my decision to go to Shakespeare and Company at the worst time of the year is that I intend to work on three books. Not one book – one book would be more than enough – but three books. One of those books is the book that I was working on in Dubai and the dog-end of last year. The other book is a book based on Pitching the World. The final book is a novella. A fucking novella.

Why I thought booking a coach – a coach! – to Paris to stay in a bookshop to write three books was a good idea is currently beyond me. I’ve had 35 years to write one book and failed. What are my chances of writing three books in a week or two whilst sleeping in a bookshop? Slim, would be my guess. And that’s assuming that they have room and like me. I might have to write three books whilst sleeping in a park in Paris. Perhaps that’s what I need. Perhaps my life has become both too unbearable and too comfortable at the same time. Who knows? Not me.

I could perhaps do with your help. Do YOU live in Paris? If you do and would like to take me out for cocktails on my birthday in a couple of weeks then please let me know. Otherwise I’ll be spending my birthday in a park alone trying to write three books at the same time.

In other news, I met a friend last night who is the deputy editor of a fitness magazine and he wants me to train for a triathlon and write about my experiences. This I like. This is the sort of stuff I should be doing. I might have to fit the training around my writing of three books – oh, and an article for a magazine about the bookshop – in two weeks in a bookshop in Paris, but I’m sure I’ll manage.


11 responses to “Shakespeare and Company

  1. Good luck! I don’t live in Paris any more but visited the shop hundreds of times in the 10+ years I did live there. It’s a great shop – I wonder if it has changed much.

    Would you like me to try and persuade some friends from Paris to meet up with a complete stranger on his birthday? I doubt you’ll need it as once you’ve been there a few days you’ll meet people. You’ll have a great time, enjoy.

  2. Good luck! Sounds like a brilliant plan. Certainly more brilliant than getting wasted at your partner’s 30th birthday party, making an ass out of yourself, and then not remembering half of the night. In short – don’t be like me! Good to see you, at least the half of the night I remember [insert shame here]. Hope you had fun.


  3. Will I meet people Little Me? And will I have a great time? Hope so, otherwise you’ll be getting an email. Thanks for the luck and the comment – I’m feeling much better about things now.
    CB – It is a brilliant plan, isn’t it. And you were brilliantly wasted. I did indeed have fun.

  4. You’ll meet loads of people. You might not like any of them but I ain’t taking responsibility for that.

    And you will have a great time. Paris is fabulous, and being on one’s own there and not having the pressure of a romantic weekend (I find it about as romantic as Morecambe prom having lived there for so long) you’ll be able to discover all the nice bits where not many people go.

  5. Pitch,

    My birthday is in 3 weeks. My hair is falling out too.

    Anyway, last month I quit my office job and opened a small bookshop in camden. Well, it was more of a shop unit. A small shop unit. Ok it wad a market stall with lots of second hand books.

    Anyway, nobody bought my books. They bought other stuff from other shop units. Oh, how they bought other stuff pitch. Just not my stuff. I dont sell books anymore

    The point is my girlfriend is french. Her family live in noisy le grand and i will see if anyone can put you up for free. I might even join you for that drink because im finished with london.

    I might even bring my unpublished novel too. You can get

  6. Hm, I didnt finish the last post. Im on a train. I was going to say you can get drunk and have a good laugh at my manuscript. Its not even a comedy. Need I say more

  7. Chris, it’s been a while. Yes, please ask people to put me up for free and yes, please let’s meet for a drink sometime. In Paris? I look forward to reading your unpublished novel.

  8. Hi Pitchy,
    After chatting with you on Thursday, I decided to peruse through your blog this morning while procrastinating work on my own writing. Your blog is very humorous and reading it was a wonderful way to waste a morning. Although, you do seem to mention fucking people in bins with alarming (amusing or alluring?) frequency. Enjoy Paris!

  9. Hey Mary-Anne,
    A wonderful way to waste a morning? How lovely. I’m afraid the alluring bin fucking is poetic license. I’ve never done it. One day though. I’m going to Paris completely broke and relatively fragile but I’ll do my best to enjoy it.

  10. Shakespeare, bookshop and Paris, Sounds devine pitchy. Creativity and inspiration will be blasting out of your folicles in droves, you will be an unstoppable writing machine, finishing all three of your books in no time I’m sure of it. Just think how the great creatives love paris, it has an unrivalled allure for artists everywhere, maybe you could also try your hand at painting a million pound master piece while you’re there? I’m sure you can fit that in too. I’ve never been to Paris so am looking forward to reading your future posts on the place, do tell us its as amazing as I think it is. Keep pitchin. 🙂

  11. Thanks wrenfrost56, but I’m afraid the place isn’t as divine as it sounds. In fact, the whole trip has been a bit of a shambles. More to follow and I will indeed keep pitching. Hopefully.

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