The James Altucher Show

Ep 84 Ben Mezrich - The Art and Science of Being a Successful Author


James and Ben Mezrich dig deep into the art and science of writing books as a full-time career. His parents gave him two years to make a go at it, but secretly he gave himself five. As Ben tells James, he never wanted to do anything else. After college, he locked himself in his apartment and wrote nine novels. He got rejection letter after rejection letter, about 190 in all. Eventually he found an agent and finally sold his first book, then his second and his third. But as he says... Nobody was reading them, until he finally got his break. Ben has now authored fifteen best-selling books. His book, The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook, a Tale of Sex, Money, Genius and Betrayal – debuted at #4 on the New York Times list. The book was adapted into the movie The Social Network – written by Aaron Sorkin and directed by David Fincher – and was #1 at the box office for two weeks, won Golden Globes for best picture, best director, best adapted screenplay, best score, and was nominated for eight Oscars, winning three. They also talk about his new book, Q. "The real information superhighway isn't in your computer it's in the sewer system." Q is the story of a regular cop, Benjamin Grady, who suddenly finds himself on the front line of an unyielding, terrifying epidemic. His job is simple- to quarantine the Probables- those most likely to be carrying a deadly disease. But Grady quickly learns that no amount of training, no amount of lectures from the experts at the CDC or the military infectious disease specialists can prepared him for a society on the verge of losing the war to a microscopic, unrelenting scourge.   Plus, He breaks a secret on the show today and tells James about his next book.