TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Authors Offer Immortality in Web Auction

Authors Offer Immortality in Web Auction

Claudia Parsons (
Thu, 18 Aug 2005 23:25:02 -0500

By Claudia Parsons

How much would you pay to be immortalized as a zombie in a Stephen
King novel or a good guy in a John Grisham thriller?

King and Grisham are among 16 authors selling the right to have a
character in a book named for the buyer to raise money for the First
Amendment Project, a California-based nonprofit group that promotes
freedom of information and expression.

Details of exactly what each author is offering have been posted on
Internet auction site eBay and the auctions will be held between
September 1 and September 25, the group said on Tuesday.

King said he was offering the chance to name a character in a novel
called "CELL," to be published in 2006 or 2007.

"Buyer should be aware that 'CELL' is a violent piece of work, which
comes complete with zombies set in motion by bad cell phone signals
that destroy the human brain," King said.

"Like cheap whiskey, it's very nasty and extremely satisfying," he
said on the site, adding that if the buyer wanted the character to diee,
it must be a female name.

David Greene of the First Amendment Project, which provides legal
representation in freedom of expression cases, said fans had already
shown significant interest.

"My job is to put out the most conservative estimate and we're hoping
to raise somewhere between $40,000 and $50,000 between the 16
authors," Greene told Reuters.

The auction is not without precedent -- religious fiction writer Karen
Kingsbury has raised some $100,000 for charity in recent years through
a series of auctions that her publicists say bring an average of
$2,500 per sale.

In the auction posting at, legal writer
Grisham promised the character whose name he is selling would be
portrayed "in a good light" in his next novel.

Amy Tan, author of "The Joy Luck Club," and best-selling romance
writer Nora Roberts are also offering names, but they gave no
guarantees about what sort of character it would be.

The author of the children's series "Lemony Snicket's A Series of
Unfortunate Events" is selling "an utterance" by the infant Sunny
Baudelaire, the youngest of the three orphan children whose adventures
are chronicled in the books.

"Pronunciation and/or spelling may be slightly 'mutilated.' An example
of this is in 'The Grim Grotto' when Sunny utters 'Bushkey,"' the
posting said.

Dave Eggers, author of the memoir "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering
Genius," said his buyer would be featured in an illustrated story
called "The Journey of the Fishes Overland."

Copyright 2005 Reuters Limited.

NOTE: For more telecom/internet/networking/computer news from the
daily media, check out our feature 'Telecom Digest Extra' each day at . Hundreds of new
articles daily.

Post Followup Article Use your browser's quoting feature to quote article into reply
Go to Next message: Arthur H. Rotstein: "Arizona High School Trades Books for Laptops"
Go to Previous message: Mark Crispin: "Re: Not so Fast! 'xxx' Startup Put on Hold"
TELECOM Digest: Home Page