Condoms with Love
When we see
the colour colour red, the British public think
of Virgin and when they see orange we think of
Easyjet. The two famous brand colours.
magical publisher husband Martin Breese decided
it was time to go into 'mainstream' publishing
and was inundated with unsolicited manuscripts by
wanna be published authors.
He did however
purchase UK rights for American Personal
Development books and in particular a book on sex
entitled 'How to ask your lover to use a condom'.
It was the
late 80s and women still were embarrassed
to suggest their lovers should be wearing condoms.
Martin had the
unusual idea to ask Virgin to supply 1,000
condoms and he wanted to glue a red condom in a
cut out window on each cover as the cover
of the soft back book was red and black.
manager agreed and a man arrived to deliver the
large but lightweight boxes. I asked him if he
could guess what the boxes contained. He
collapsed when I told him.
My job was to
sit on the floor and open all the boxes of ten.
They were perforated and came in sheets of three
and so I would have to cut each condom.
Eventually he got a company to glue each condom
onto the first page so that it showed through the
The book was a
flop. It was banned in Ireland. Almost all the
booksellers, like Waterstones, returned the books
unsold because persons unknown had stolen the
thousand hits you might say. Good publicity for
Virgin and Richard!
at Hotel Belmondo, Chania, Crete December 2015.