UPDATED, 5:28 PM: North American rights to Diary Of An Oxygen Thief just sold to Jeremie Ruby-Straus at Gallery, the Simon & Schuster imprint. Waxman Leavell now is looking to make an international deal.
EARLIER EXCLUSIVE, 1:42 pm: Just as an auction for publishing rights is going on, Gotham Group has acquired screen rights to Diary of an Oxygen Thief, a book written by an anonymous author that takes a raw look at the complicated relationships between men and women. Told from the male perspective by an unreliable narrator, it’s tonally compared to Fight Club or American Psycho. It has been a bit of a secret till now, but there is an auction going on through publishing agent Byrd Leavall of Waxman/Leavell for the first book, to be published in the fall. Gotham Group will produce the film version of the book and its follow-up, Chameleon on a Kaleidoscope. The author’s working on a third installment. You can blow up the below image to read a sample or find it on the book’s Twitter feed.
The author — who wrote the book under “Anonymous” and is a award-winning former creative director from a major ad agency — has been hand-selling the book on street corners in Soho and biking copies to local bookstores. He replenishes the supply a few at a time, as the book built steam and would sell out. Copies are on sale on eBay for as much as $1,250 for a hardcover; used paperbacks are selling for more than $100 on Amazon, making it a bit of a self-publishing phenomenon. The book has sold more than 50K copies in the past three months alone, bringing the total to 90K.