Things That Never Were
July 7, 2003 8:47 PM   Subscribe

Things That Never Were is a new novel from an ex-weblogger. First it was Cory and now Matthew. Who's next and are there any other webloggers turned authors? Not the other way around.
posted by john (28 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'm next.
posted by scarabic at 8:49 PM on July 7, 2003

Is anyone out there in blog land not trying to write a novel?
posted by xmutex at 8:51 PM on July 7, 2003

If blogger novels are as compelling as their blogs, then I'll be ignoring them in favour of more stimulating reading -- like the nutritional information written on my newly-bought box of Special K.
posted by Dark Messiah at 9:04 PM on July 7, 2003

Matt Rossi, honestly, was always a standout. A complete loon, and a really entertaining one. Hurrah!
posted by blissbat at 9:07 PM on July 7, 2003

I got next after scarabic.
posted by lnicole at 9:51 PM on July 7, 2003

Indeed, Matt's extraordinary talent manages to stand out from any crowd - even one as potentially diabolically weird as the internet at large. Dark Messiah, may I suggest you put down the War and Peace version of Special K and find some more interesting blogs to read?
posted by Nyx at 9:58 PM on July 7, 2003

Bill Whittle over at Eject, Eject, Eject is certainly trying to master 'the long form' and has, in his last long essay "Trinity" declared that he's writing a book spun off of his web writing. He'll probably be published too.
posted by boswell at 10:26 PM on July 7, 2003

And, for that matter, my first book, RULES OF THE NET, would not have been possible except for about five years on the Well before I wrote it. That and, of course, my collaborator, Tom Mandel. God, it would have been great to see what Tom would have blogged.
posted by boswell at 10:29 PM on July 7, 2003

i'd by a book by bobby burgess in an instant. someone please publish this kid.
posted by dobbs at 10:34 PM on July 7, 2003

I am proud to say that Matt Rossi is a friend of mine.

He may kill me for posting this link, but if you want to see some early (1993-1994ish) writing of his, head over to the yabbs message bases and search through them for posts by a Badger01. It's on a variety of topics and I can't speak to the quality of it, as I was 18/19. I'm not saying what my handle was.

I'm really happy that Matt is finally getting a book published and that I'll be able to buy a copy.
posted by eilatan at 10:36 PM on July 7, 2003

Cory Doctorow has published material going back to 1990, so I'd call him more of an "author/blogger" than "blogger turned author".
posted by teg at 11:05 PM on July 7, 2003

This may be blurring the definition of "blogger" somewhat, but I'd say Paul Ford definitely ought to be writing a novel, even if he isn't. And if you'd rather stretch the definition of novel, Wiley Wiggins' Solarcon 6 is an interesting, albeit somewhat experimental, book available for free download.
posted by arto at 12:35 AM on July 8, 2003

I just read an excellent book called Things me and my girlfriend have argued about, which is loosely based on the website from Mil Millington

Quite an entertaining read!
posted by sebas at 12:42 AM on July 8, 2003

oh god. please god, don't let my girlfriend write a book based on her blog.

it's like sebas's link, but on steroids
posted by quarsan at 12:47 AM on July 8, 2003

My novel Old Man's War sold to Tor Books after I serialized it on my Web site last December; Tor's editor saw it there, read it and made an offer. It'll be out in May 2004.

Aside from the specific case of the novel, all the books for which I am the sole author or have contributed to have been published after I begun writing regularly online. The two books I am currently writing have their lineage tracing back to writing I've put up on my site: An other novel, which is part of an overall two-book deal Tor, and a book on stupidity (The Book of the Dumb), the publisher of which, Portable Press, I began a relationship with after it used several entries of my 1999 "That Was the Millennium That Was" online series for its "Uncle John's Bathroom Reader" line of books.

My experience with writing in and about the online medium was also partially responsible for helping me land my first book deal for The Rough Guide to Money Online, which was published in 2000. A second book published last May, The Rough Guide to the Universe, came out of that relationship.

I was a professional writer prior to writing on the Web; be that as it may, for the "author" section of my resume, writing online has been very useful.
posted by jscalzi at 1:03 AM on July 8, 2003

I'm a writer-turned-blogger, not a blogger-turned-writer.
posted by doctorow at 3:40 AM on July 8, 2003

Ok so it's just Matthew, then?
posted by iconomy at 5:17 AM on July 8, 2003

Generally, yes, people call me Matthew. Ezrael also works, but obviously, I'm not putting the book out under that nickname.

And it's not a novel. Truth be told, I have no idea how to describe it. Paul Di Filippo called it speculative nonfiction. I guess that works.

And I will admit to the horrible poetry Natalie was so kind to point you to. I was young, and very very drunk. This does not excuse how very very horrible it was, however.
posted by Ezrael at 5:32 AM on July 8, 2003

Well, to be fair, Matt, I've got some horrible poetry in there, too. And while I was young, I wasn't drunk, so I have no excuse.
posted by eilatan at 5:46 AM on July 8, 2003

Yeah, I got a book in the works. "The Heart's Filthy Lesson."

This may or may not suck. I suppose we shall see.
posted by adamgreenfield at 7:24 AM on July 8, 2003

The Heart's Filthy Lesson?
posted by eustacescrubb at 8:07 AM on July 8, 2003

Is anyone out there in blog land not trying to write a novel?

Yeah, me. Mine's simply a storehouse for ideas and things of note. That's it. If others read it, fine. If not, also fine. I can't tell you how many times I've searched the archive for a contact or project whose name escapes me in my old age, thankful I had the presence of mind to blog it. If I had to keep all the links and info and bits of bits in my head I'd have no room to think.
posted by yoga at 8:11 AM on July 8, 2003

I'm focusing my efforts on a screenplay.

Ya know--less words, and all.
posted by brittney at 9:43 AM on July 8, 2003

Good to see Matt getting published. He's the only person I've known who would skip classes in college to go read in the library.

(Yeah, Matt, I keep saying that, but I still think that's a cool thing.)
posted by zedzebedia at 10:42 AM on July 8, 2003

Sorry for the error there Cory.

Arto, I agree with you about Paul. Todd Levin seems to have written everything short of a novel. Then there is Craig who has kept many people waiting for chapter 24 of She Hates my Futon, but he's not been idle. And then there's another Mefi member that I'd like to see in print.
posted by john at 11:53 AM on July 8, 2003

Wow, I'd completely forgotten about "She Hates My Futon." (I think he was up to maybe chapter ten or so when I left off...) Thanks John!
posted by arto at 12:41 PM on July 8, 2003

Oh, and go read this thread from July 2nd for discussion about another blogger-turned-writer.
posted by Asparagirl at 2:58 PM on July 8, 2003

None shall read this here, I suspect, at the bottom of this now-elderly thread, but Publisher's Weekly has announced that Grove/Atlantic will be bringing out a book based on Salam Pax's famed Iraqi blog. The PW website requires registration, so here's the full text of their newsbrief:

Salam Pax, the web diarist known as the Baghdad Blogger, has been signed to a deal by Atlantic Books in the U.K., with parent Grove/Atlantic bringing out the book next fall in stateside. The paperback original is the "ultimately embedded" account of the second Gulf War and will feature a collection of Pax's pseudonymous postings. Pax was the blogger who wrote revealingly and comically of life in Baghdad, maintaining skepticism about both Saddam and the invading armies.
posted by BT at 10:32 AM on July 11, 2003

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