(from the desk of Glenn Eichler)
The whole story is so well known by now that I feel kind of silly rehashing it, but since you asked: I first got the idea for Mush! Sled Dogs With Issues in a dream, when a talking Weimeraner named Berkowitz appeared before me and commanded me to kill time. He suggested writing a graphic novel about dogs with interpersonal problems. It seemed like a better idea than the book I’d been planning, a romance novel about the square root of pi, so I went with it. With the help of awesome editor Tanya McKinnon I finished the manuscript and turned it in to First Second, and they got me together with even awesomer illustrator Joe Infurnari, who not only drew the book but also gave it its name. We hit a little bump in the road when some JPEGS of Joe’s initial sketches somehow found their way onto WikiLeaks; the buzz around them became so fierce that an assistant curator from the Tate Gallery broke into Joe’s loft and tried to steal them. Luckily, Joe is handy with his antique Mauser. The judge ruled it justifiable homicide.
Sensing the potential of the finished book, First Second immediately put it on their fast track to publication. In less than a decade it was in the stores. I wish they’d waited a little while longer, since I’ve always wanted to be published posthumously, but you can’t have everything.
We had the publication party in Madison Square Garden. Yankee Stadium had been suggested, but I didn’t want to be a showoff. I regret that decision now, because when it turned out the Garden couldn’t accommodate everyone who wanted to come, a bloody fistfight broke out between Doris Kearns Goodwin and Taylor Swift. Luckily the reporter from TMZ was so entranced by the live dolphin birth that he never even noticed.
You know the rest. American Book Award, Pulitzer, PENCIL/Faulkner Award (not as well known as the PEN/Faulkner Award, but it has the advantage of being erasable), Booker Prize Short Hairs List, Neurotic-Dog-A-Day Calendar, Golf Channel docudrama. I’ve now had so many people approach me to say Mush! changed their lives that I’ve had to have business cards printed up reading I’M SO FLATTERED, NOW PLEASE MOVE ALONG. That’s not to say I don’t appreciate my fans; I cherish every one of them. Now please move along.
So thank you to everyone who helped make Mush! Sled Dogs With Issues one of the bestselling books of last Tuesday afternoon between 1:15 and 1:16 (especially you, Mom). And to those who have pleaded with Joe and me to turn it into a Harry Potter-style epic series featuring a 10,000-page finale, I’m sorry to disappoint you, but that’s just not my style. I can’t stand repeating myself. Besides, I’m too busy working on my next book, Meow! House Cats With Problems. I think it’s really going to make the Nobel Committee sit up and take notice.