About a year ago, Simon & Schuster threw a $9 million advance at Amy Schumer and told her to get writing. If $9 million seems like a lot of money for a book of essays written by a funny (depending who you ask) lady, it is. $9 million is a lot more than the $6 million Tina Fey got for writing Bossypants or the $3.7 million Lena Dunham got for Oh Shit, We Should Have Proofread This. Simon & Schuster were probably hoping that everyone was going to rush Black Friday-style to their nearest Barnes & Noble to buy Amy’s memoir, The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo, and help them make back some of that $9 million they spent. But according to Page Six, that isn’t happening.
TGWTLBT got decent reviews from critics and sold 170,000 copies so far. It has also held the #1 nonfiction spot on The New York Times bestsellers list for two weeks in a row. A rep for Simon & Schuster tells Page Six that they’re “beyond thrilled” about Amy’s book. But a book source – and yes I just pictured Fantasy from The Pagemaster whispering “Shhhh! Now listen up…” – tells Page Six that while Amy’s book is doing well, it’s not doing the kind of well Simon & Schuster’s accountants were expecting.
The source says the publishers are “hugely disappointed” and that they’re going to “lose a ton of money.” For Simon & Schuster to make back the $9 million they spent, they’ll either have to find a way to sell several million books or jack up the price from $19.99 to $499.99. And honestly, unless we’re talking about BillyBoy*’s history of Barbie, I’m not paying that much money for a book about the life of a famous blonde.
Another source tells Page Six that rival publishers are all popping bottles of sparkling milk milk lemonade right now over this news. Apparently there was a bidding war for Amy’s book, and now some of the publishers who lost to Simon & Schuster are breathing a huge sigh of financial relief.
Not too long after Amy’s book was released, she talked shit about the Met Gala. It’s pretty obvious what has happened here. Anna Wintour dragged her cauldron out from under her office desk, sent a VOGUE intern to the hex district for a fresh bottle of Eye of Newt and the head of a Cabbage Patch Doll, and put a curse on Amy for daring to speak ill of Anna’s party. “This bitch thinks she’s so damn funny, now her book will make no money. Mwahahahah!”
Here’s Amy and her boyfriend Ben Sandwich at the GQ Men of the Year Awards in London yesterday.