Entries from March 2012

The latest on Defending Jacob

It’s been a while since I posted one of these updates about Defending Jacob, so here we go.

The biggest news: Warner Brothers has optioned Defending Jacob for a movie. No actors or directors are attached to the project yet. It will likely be a year or so before we have a screenplay, which will make or break the project since it is the screenplay, not the novel, that will attract actors and directors. Now, what I know about the movie business would fit on the head of a pin, so I won’t predict how this will turn out or even whether the movie will be made at all. But every indication is that the producers are intent on making this happen. Stay tuned.

Last week, Defending Jacob was published in the UK. My English publisher, Orion, has orchestrated a phenomenal publicity effort. Luckily, I will be in London in April to see it (and to drop by the London Book Fair, briefly). The first reviews from England have arrived as well, all quite favorable. In The Times, Marcel Berlins wrote that Defending Jacob is “worthy of being mentioned in the same breath [as Presumed Innocent], which is a high compliment.” It certainly is.

Another exciting aspect of this whole adventure has been foreign sales. Defending Jacob has sold in nineteen foreign countries, an absurd number. Now, the trouble with selling so many foreign-language editions is that sooner or later you run out of places to keep selling. Which is why it was so remarkable when we sold the book in Macedonia last week. Because, well, it’s Macedonia. The advance will barely cover a dinner out with my family, and the print run probably will be around 500 copies. Still, I would bet that more American novels are optioned for film than are translated into Macedonian, so let’s pause to savor this milestone, too.

Finally, yesterday morning was a remarkable one here in Boston, where I scored a publicity twofer. First, my hometown newspaper, the Globe, ran an interview with me — and put my mug at the top of page one. This is the very definition of a slow news day, one would think, but there it was. And second, I appeared on the popular morning drive-time show “Matty in the Morning.” The show’s host, Matt Siegel, is a Boston institution and a genuine, enthusiastic fan of Defending Jacob. (You can listen to the interview here.) So Bostonians on their way to work yesterday could hardly escape me.

What a long, strange trip it’s been.

Categories: My Books    Tags: ·

UK pub day

Defending Jacob UK hardcover

Today is the UK publishing day for Defending Jacob. Safe journey, little book!

Categories: My Books    Tags: ·

Ad of the day

Berliner Philharmoniker

Cool print ad campaign for the chamber orchestra of the Berliner Philharmoniker featuring expansive photos of the cramped spaces inside musical instruments. More images here. (Via Andrew Sullivan)

Categories: Design · Music    Tags: ·

Yale vs. Princeton, 1903

The oldest surviving video of an American football game, Yale vs. Princeton in 1903 (via Kottke)

Categories: Sports    Tags: · · ·

L.A.P.D Archives, 1955


Categories: Crime · Photography    Tags:

London Tube campaign

With our UK publishing date fast approaching, Orion will soon have this outrageously cool series of posters displayed alongside the escalators at select London Tube stations. Jacob is coming, Londoners — and he doesn’t look happy. (Defending Jacob will be published in the UK on March 15. Click image to view it larger.)

Categories: My Books    Tags: ·

Quote of the Day

Even within the most beautiful landscape, in the trees, under the leaves the insects are eating each other; violence is a part of life.

Francis Bacon

Categories: Odds & Ends    Tags: · ·

“MCMXIV” by Philip Larkin

Those long uneven lines
Standing as patiently
As if they were stretched outside
The Oval or Villa Park,
The crowns of hats, the sun
On moustached archaic faces
Grinning as if it were all
An August Bank Holiday lark;

And the shut shops, the bleached
Established names on the sunblinds,
The farthings and sovereigns,
And dark-clothed children at play
Called after kings and queens,
The tin advertisements
For cocoa and twist, and the pubs
Wide open all day —

And the countryside not caring:
The place names all hazed over
With flowering grasses, and fields
Shadowing Domesday lines
Under wheat’s restless silence;
The differently-dressed servants
With tiny rooms in huge houses,
The dust behind limousines;

Never such innocence,
Never before or since,
As changed itself to past
Without a word — the men
Leaving the gardens tidy,
The thousands of marriages,
Lasting a little while longer:
Never such innocence again.

Categories: Poetry    Tags: ·