Q         I haven't been to any of your readings or bookstore appearances. I would guess that the Leyner Army out there in throngs?  

ML     Yeah, usually. Lots of people come. There's no merchandise, although I'm always asked, "Where are the key rings? The belt buckles?" It's interesting to be touring for a book that was written a while ago. In order to do a book tour well . . . you have to repatriate yourself into the country of that book, even though you've probably moved. But it's fun. I mean, when people ask me, "Do you have your bodyguards with you?" It takes me a minute to know what their talking about.

I really play this (tour) stuff to the hilt. Like room service: the other day I called for a cookie just to see if they'd bring me one. They said, "No, we have an assortment of cookies, sorbet and ice cream." And I said, "No, I want one cookie." I wanted to see the one cookie on the big plate and when the guy took the silver lid off there'd be one cookie! And they always tell you what it is, no matter what you get. In a fine hotel, the waiter comes up, and he'll say, "Mr. Leyner, this is your coffee, your egg-white omelette, this is your croissant," as if you're a complete moron. I just wanted to see him say "This is your... cookie" when there was nothing else there.

from An Interview With Mark Leyner by Alexander Laurence, 1994