Granted, it’s not exactly the breaking royal news and gossip in which The Royalist usually trades, but The Daily Telegraph carries a fascinating story today concerning the memoirs of legendary literary agent and publisher Charles Pick, who died 12 years ago at the age of 82, author of an unpublished memoir. The manuscript has now been donated to the University of East Anglia, along with the rest of his archive.
His memoir recounts the occasion when the Duchess of Windsor, Wallis Simpson, summoned Pick to Paris to discuss publication of her 1956 autobiography, The Heart Has Its Reasons.
He found her reclined on a chaise longue in her drawing room “with a large, round box of Charbonnel et Walker chocolates within reach of her right hand.
“As she rose to greet me her opening remark was, ‘Can you please tell me who Marilyn Monroe’s publicity agent is?’
“I had to confess I had no idea but enquired as to why she wanted to know. ‘Look,’ she said, ‘I have all the newspapers each day and I was generally on the front page. But now I see that Marilyn Monroe is on the front page. Well, somebody has pushed me off!’
“I could see I was in for a difficult time, but I explained that I wasn’t in any way able to help her in displacing Marilyn Monroe in her favour.’”
Sixty years and hardly a slip.