First came former Valleywag Nick Douglas' Twitter book deal with HarperCollins, followed within a month by New York Times columnist David Pogue and his similar compilation of tweets for O'Reilly. Now Pogue is trying to leapfrog.
According to a press release from his publisher, reprinted below, Pogue's book now has a publication date of August 12, nearly a full month ahead of Douglas' book (Sept. 8), despite the writer's late start.
Douglas was mostly polite about the competition in an email conversation — "I'm sure both his book and mine will do well," yadda yadda — but we did manage to elicit one underminey quote:
I'm impressed with how quickly Pogue and his publisher turned out their book, since I started working on mine last fall and only just this week approved the absolute final draft. I'm pretty thankful for the long process.
With less time, I couldn't have gotten contributions from Jimmy Fallon, Ashton Kutcher, Susan Orlean, Eugene Mirman, Michael Ian Black and Michael Showalter, or Sarah Silverman.
Zing! (In fairness, we'll be happy to print a reply from Pogue. Feel free to go way over 140 characters, David!)
Though Douglas may have the big names, Pogue has a decided PR advantage. The high-profile columnist and TV commentator has a head start, and thus a pretty good shot at sucking up all the available press for a book of witty tweets. He's also got claim to calling his book the first of its kind, as he does in the press release below.
Now Douglas' publisher HarperCollins has to scramble to catch up. An old-line publishing house moving at Twitter speeds? Stranger things have happened.