There will be much more news in the coming months, but for now here’s a bit of background.
Last August my fiancée and I became addicted to Instagram. We filled our idle seconds and minutes with an endless scroll of landscapes, selfies, and FOMO catnip. I thought I should add something nominally educational to my feed so my time wouldn’t be entirely wasted. (It didn’t occur to me to just use Instagram less.)
I sketched a few brief facts with the purpose of giving people an exit strategy for awkward pauses. To be more specific, I thought of that difficult first-date leap from “hello” to a more substantive conversation. She might hit the bar to order drinks while he checks his phone (as 33% of us do). She returns, there’s a moment of silence, then: “Did you know Samuel Beckett used to drive a 12-year-old André the Giant to school?”
I quickly learned Tumblr was a better venue than Instagram for the concept, and I was thrilled by the attention from Buzzfeed, Mashable, and A Cup of Jo. (Even a New Zealand magazine for teenage girls covered the blog.)
So! I’m hard at work on the book researching the most interesting facts in the world. That’s right, the most interesting facts in the world. The final product will be a conversation-starting talisman of great power, just like Evil Dead‘s Necronomicon. But without the zombies.*
Lastly, I want to say thanks to my editor Wynn Rankin, my agent Kate McKean, and Tumblr’s Rachel Fershleiser. And in particular to Summer Smith, my one-woman, infinitely patient focus group.
*The special edition may contain zombies.