Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Bloggers inherit the Earth

Two bloggers have just been hoisted out of the torrid obscurity of the blogosphere and presented with fat publishers’ cheques.

Today, in the Independent, we learn that Catherine Sanderson, on the strength of her blog La Petite Anglaise, has landed a six-figure two-book deal. There’s even talk of a movie-of-the-blog starring Kate Winslet.

Ms Sanderson had already come to public attention last April when she was fired from her job because of her internet site – in one entry she writes disparagingly of her boss’ “braces and sock suspenders … when I speak to him, I can’t prevent myself from mirroring his plummy accent.” She is currently suing her former employer for wrongful dismissal and is claiming £50,000.

The other star-is-born is Judith O’Reilly who has just picked up a £70,000 deal with Viking Penguin after her blog Wife In The North impressed a number of notables including journalist Andrew Sullivan and Tom Watson MP. After exiting the Sunday Times as education correspondent and downshifting to darkest Northumberland, because of some romantic notion of her husband, she retained her sanity by writing a public diary.

The churlish will say that her Sunday Times connection won’t have hurt her. But the blog does have a must-read pull, thanks to Ms O’Reilly’s facility for soliciting our pity as her metropolitan spirit struggles in the northern heartlands, all rendered in a velvety prose style. Remarkably she only started blogging in earnest in January.

Both sites strike me as reality blogo-soaps – the way forward with publishers, plainly. And but for the blogs it is highly unlikely that these two fortunate people would now be contemplating a life of recognition and perhaps the odd guest spot on Radio 4's Start The Week.

You maybe assured that Madame Arcati shall resist any temptation to start her own reality blogo-soap ....


Susan Hill said...

I`m sending you oop 'tnorth. All the best people come from there.

duralex said...

<< You maybe assured that Madame Arcati shall resist any temptation to start her own reality blogo-soap. >>

Oh, I can understand that. Being in the blogo-soup is quite enough for her, I guess.

Okay, don't cry baby, that's it... for today. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I read the wife up north blog and just thought it was patronising. It's a London journalist thing and I expect it appeals to Londion journalists. 'Lets go and laugh at those funny uncultured people who live in the sticks'. Ha.

Ms Baroque said...

Oh dear. I just looked at Wife in the North. If that's what people want, I'm cooked.

Anyway I've always been told that I am, personally, like a soap. EastEnders, to be specific. (Eastenders makes me laugh, as it goes; Wife in the North didn't.)

steg said...

Don't worry Ms Baroque, I've looked at your blog and it is much, much better than wife in the North's. I have a lot of time for books of blogs when they are worth reading - Salam Pax or Riverbend, for example. In both cases something awful and momentous has taken over their lives and they are recording a piece of history. Wife in the north has not been invaded, she has merely been uprooted a couple of hundred miles.

Ms Baroque said...

Steg, that is so sweet! Thank you. All I need now is a commissioning editor & I'm away. (I say that, but we all know I will never leave.)