Friday, September 23, 2005

And We Didn't Even Need to Hire a Naked Parachutist

Well, check this out!

From Reuters, via ABC News:
Sep 23, 2005 — NEW YORK (Reuters) - Writers can rejoice — Oprah has returned to picking living authors for her book club.

Credited by U.S. publishers with being one of the biggest sales drivers in the business, Oprah Winfrey's book club began as a segment on her television talk show in 1996 and she initially picked new novels.

But she suspended the club in April 2002, before relaunching in June 2003 with classics such as John Steinbeck's "East of Eden" and Leo Tolstoy's "Anna Karenina."

Earlier this year, a group of novelists wrote Winfrey a letter (although the letter was *not* delivered by naked parachutists, as I suggested that the author group do) begging her to resume picking living authors, and finally she has relented.

Her latest pick announced on Thursday on her Web site was "A Million Little Pieces," a memoir by James Frey about the author's time at a rehabilitation center for alcohol and drug addiction, published by Random House imprint Anchor Books.... {{{more}}}
And here's the New York Times article on the subject (subscription free but required):
Oprah Winfrey said yesterday that she was expanding her highly influential television book club to include the works of contemporary authors, reversing a policy of choosing only classic novels and once again offering authors and their publishers the hope of huge sales resulting from her picks.

"I wanted to open the door and broaden the field," Ms. Winfrey said in an interview. "That allows me the opportunity to do what I like to do most, which is sit and talk to authors about their work. It's kind of hard to do that when they're dead."...Ms. Winfrey said she was aware of the [author]petition and was moved by it. {{{more}}}
Here's James:

He'll make a better interview than a dead guy. But that photo needs cropping, I think...

I haven't read Frey's book but had been intending to. I guess now I'll have to. Not like he needs the extra press or anything... *SIGH*... ah well. However, I think this is really good news for authors.