Famous Writers

With the passing of renowned poet Robert Creeley yesterday at the age of 78, I am thinking of well-known writers I’ve met. It would be a little too grim to limit this to those who have died.

Here’s a few Creeley lines from For Love: Poems 1950-1960:

What is it that
is finally so helpless
different, despairs of its own
statement, wants to
turn away, endlessly
to turn away

(I heard Creeley read while I was in college. I was also admitted into one of writing classes, but I had a geographical problem: he was in Masschusetts; I was in California, attending classes because I didn’t get into his class quickly enough to suit me. “The apparition of these faces in the crowd/ Petals on a wet black bough.” Damn, I was good.*)

Excluding co-workers, I think the most well-known copywriter I have met was Tom Nathan. He taught a copywriting class in N ew York and had worked at Scali McCabe Sloves. He wrote some incredible advertising.

The one I remember most vividly is
A Volvo discovery. Rain also falls on the rear window. — showing of course, the rear window wiper on a Volvo station wagon.

Does anyone have any encounters with famous writers or copywriters? What ads, what marketing campaigns, were they most famous for? And if you are Ed McCabe, don’t tell me because I just won’t believe you.

*OK, the poem is by Ezra Pound called “In a Station of the Metro.” The link has a wonderful description of how Pound came to write this poem.