Good evening, my name is Yang. Tim Yang.
October 15, 2001 8:39 PM   Subscribe

Good evening, my name is Yang. Tim Yang. A group of nine authors, three of them Booker prize winners are accepting bids to name the characters in their next book after the winners. The authors include Margaret Atwood, Terry Prachett, Ken Follett and Raymond Benson (who is taking up the reigns of writing new James Bond novels). Prices go for as high as GBP6,200. I think it's a fantastic idea! I've always wanted to see my name in print. What role would you like to play if you won?
posted by timyang (16 comments total)
Well, if my name was John Smith or Ray Chang, I don't think I'd be bidding on that. Or if I did, I'd at least ask for some donations from the other million people with my name.
BUT! If my name was Ian Paul Freely, Richard Head or Joey Jo-Jo Junior Shabadoo, I think I'd put some money on the line to make the authors sweat a bit.
posted by Grum at 9:01 PM on October 15, 2001

I'm going to change my name to "Ima Pretentious Jerk" and sell my house to bid on Atwood's next heroine.
posted by Hildago at 10:27 PM on October 15, 2001

It's a good idea in theory...but with my luck, the character with my name would be a spandex-wearing, mall-bang ridden woman with a perchant for knitting mufflers out of kitten fur and a questionable Elvis fetish.

Oh, the teasing resulting from that...
posted by Windigo at 10:56 PM on October 15, 2001

Raymond Benson (with whom I've had the pleasure of drinking, along with other 007 fans) has already written five James Bond novels, and in each one he's named a character after a pal met through the James Bond International Fan Club, several of whom are regulars on The Ian Fleming literary estate has directed him to write a mix of elements of the Fleming books and the Broccoli-family movies. As a long-renowned 007 trivia expert, he includes many small and beloved details, though it's often clear that he's not an accomplished novelist, and that he's American. I recommend High Time to Kill and The Facts of Death, with Never Dream of Dying and Zero Minus Ten getting mixed reviewsl. (Stay away from Doubleshot, unless you're a completist.)
posted by dhartung at 11:34 PM on October 15, 2001

Cult fantasy writer Terry Pratchett - the UK's all-time best-selling novelist - is also willing to write a fan into his next book for a price.

Can Pratchett really have sold more books than Agatha Christie?
posted by bilco at 2:21 AM on October 16, 2001

Or Dickens?
posted by thijsk at 5:43 AM on October 16, 2001

Does it have to be your own name? I'd pay millions to see Bubbles Powerpuff in a major ("major" meaning 700+ pages) artistic statement.
posted by jfuller at 5:47 AM on October 16, 2001

Lots of Personalized Books are already being marketed for children who can't get enough of themselves.
posted by Carol Anne at 6:23 AM on October 16, 2001

What if you end up blowing $10,000 on one of these things, and the writer goes off and makes your character a wife-abusing, drug-addicted murderous psychopath? And then the book goes on to become one of the greatest novels of the 21st century, with your character becoming a household name? As, you know, synonymous with wife-beating, drug addiction and mass murder?
posted by aaron at 6:32 AM on October 16, 2001

Don't worry aaron, that could only improve your reputation here.

I knew a guy in college who won such an auction at a small science fiction convention; for about $100 or so (donated to charity) he became the main character in one of Mike Stackpole's Battletech novels. When the book came out, he hated it.
posted by harmful at 6:47 AM on October 16, 2001

hey, send me money and i'll name characters in my work after you too.
posted by tolkhan at 7:17 AM on October 16, 2001

I relish being hated by people as laughable as you.
posted by aaron at 9:44 AM on October 16, 2001

If I win, can I have them spell my name "Nick Wolf"? That always seemed like a much cooler secret-agent name than mine...
posted by nicwolff at 10:12 AM on October 16, 2001

I never meant it as anything more than a joke. I'm sorry.
posted by harmful at 8:23 PM on October 16, 2001

didnt you guys have those books as a kid that your parents could buy and they pay whoever they buy it from to put your name and the names of your friends/cousins/whoever as the characters of the book?
i know my aunty did that for one of her kids because i remember getting a real thrill when i was a little girl reading an actual book and seeing the names of my cousins, my brother & sister and i as characters in it! it was soooo cool! or so i thought at the time :)
posted by endorwitch at 7:18 PM on October 17, 2001

My name's Tom Clancy. I relish not seeing it in print. I'd go with Bubbles Powerpuff as well.
posted by yerfatma at 7:28 PM on October 17, 2001

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