Life & Tomes
But what he really wants to do is…publish? Lord of the Rings sword wrangler Viggo Mortensen is looking to tear a page from McSweeney’s, the indie press owned by that staggering (or is it heartbreaking?) genius of a memoirist-novelist-publisher, Dave Eggers (inset). Mortensen, who recently drew some 500 fans to a reading of his poetry in L.A., has cofounded Perceval Press and is turning to Eggers for pointers. ”I asked questions about the difficulties he faced,” says the 44-year-old actor, who’s mimicking Eggers’ small-is-better approach by placing just three titles on his roster. Two are books of Mortensen’s own poetry and artwork (including portraits of such past costars as Elijah Wood and Gwyneth Paltrow) and the third is a sketchbook by artist Lola Schnabel. Future projects could range from a collection of essays on contemporary Cuban art to the biography of a 1930s trick roper. ”I don’t want it to get to the point where I’m doing this on a large scale,” says Mortensen. ”If it can pay for itself that would be nice.” Hobbits be damned, perhaps the pen is indeed mightier than the sword.