While I was conducting the researches for my novel, “Eddie must Die“, I needed to know some more detail about logistics and stage set for Iron Maiden, and on this purpose I emailed their management in London, asking to be put in touch with a member of staff. As it was predictable, they politely fucked me off, and, once shock passed, I sat in front of Google and typed something like “Iron Maiden roadie“, I can’t remember well.
On the screen appeared “Loopyworld“, a book written by Steve Newhouse, aka Loopy. This name was not new to me: in the early Maiden records he was credited as a member of staff (known as Killer Krew). By that time the book could be ordered only by sending him an email, so, since I was there, I jotted also a couple of lines explaining the reason why I was buying it (other than, obviously, own any fetish regarding my idols).
Steve answered, telling me that he liked the project I was working at, a novel set during the tour “The Beast on the Road“. It took a very short time from there to get connected on Facebook. With big disappointment I have learned that Steve did tot take part on that specific tour, but I wanted to meet him anyway, not only for the mutual pleasantness, but also because I felt he was going to be really useful to understand some backstage dynamics. After a few chats, we finally met, needless to say, at Cart and Horses.
The legendary pub organised a party to celebrate the closure and enter in a (unfortunately long and still ongoing, thanks to Covid) phase of refurbishment. Steve was there with his lovely wife Sharron and both turned out to be really friendly. That chat, inevitably soaked with beer and with the live music in background, helped me massively with the novel writing, as well as it was reading his book, extremely interesting for anybody who is a Maiden or a Metal fan.
But all this did not end up, after that wonderful evening. As far as I went on with the novel writing, I kept pestering the poor and good Steve with questions, and all of them were answered with punctuality and patience.
Some weeks after I stopped annoying him, Steve sent me a message: “Were you telling me about your skills on building up a website, or is my memory totally fucked up?”
(laughing emoticon) “You remember well… what can I do for you?”
“I need a new website, I have a low budget, but I’d love to restart selling my book online.”
“Free of charge is a good budget for you?”
“I cannot accept that!”
“You must, instead. After all the help you provided me with my book, it’s the minimum I can do.”
So, like the Arab Phoenix, loopyworld.uk was reborn, alongside with a new Facebook page. While I was proceeding with the job, very slowly due to my “real” work commitments, the idea that the Italian Maiden fanbase should know better Loopy’s book was insinuating inside me. Italian fans have always been really fond about the band, and deserved the precious story told by Loopy. Then I proposed myself as a translator for his book, obviously free of charge: not only for the growing friendship between us, but also because I was really shocked about the story behind the original version’s publication. His publisher’s contract (maybe should be called a typography in disguise) forced him to pre-purchase a massive amount of copies, and he still has a number of them still laying at home. A good online presence was needed for getting more buyers, and this publisher-printer, at the times, was not offering many promotional opportunities for the book.
Steve sent me the book’s original files and I cracked on with the task, daring the promise he wouldn’t spend a penny to get the book published. I was going to send the manuscript to targeted italian publishers, specialized in biographies and if got refused, I had a B-plan to use Amazon.
My B-plan was not applied. Almost on the first attempt, Max Baroni, a fabolous person, managing director of Tsunami Edizioni, accepted the manuscript. I was assigned to the care of another fantastic person, Dar, in charge of translations, who corrected with professionality, patience and a bit of fun, the unavoidable mistakes made by a newbie translator like myself. Now the book is about to be published: next June 2021 will hit the shelves all over Italy, with not only my satisfaction but Steve’s, who deserves it.