Edward William Bok > The Americanization of Edward Bok > Page 117

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Edward William Bok (1863–1930). The Americanization of Edward Bok. 1921.


Page 117

B. Frost, the illustrator, came in. Frost had become a full-fledged farmer with one hundred and twenty acres of Jersey land, and Stockton had a large farm in the South which was a financial burden to him.

“Well, Stockton,” said Frost, “I have found a way at last to make a farm stop eating up money. Perhaps it will help you.”

Stockton was busy writing, but at this bit of hopeful news he looked up, his eyes kindled, he dropped his pen, and eagerly said:

“Tell me.”

And looking behind him to see that the way was clear, Frost answered:

“Pave it solid, old man.”

When the stories of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Little Lord Fauntleroy were made into plays, Bok was given an opportunity for an entirely different kind of publicity. Both plays were highly successful; they ran for weeks in succession, and each evening Bok had circulars of the books in every seat of the theatre; he had a table filled with the books in the foyer of each theatre; and he bombarded the newspapers with stories of Mr. Mansfield’s method of making the quick change from one character to the other in the dual rôle of the Stevenson play, and with anecdotes about the boy Tommy Russell in Mrs. Burnett’s play. The sale of the books went merrily on, and kept pace with the success of the plays. And it all sharpened the initiative of the young advertiser and developed his sense for publicity.

One day while waiting in the anteroom of a publishing house to see a member of the firm, he picked up a

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