Entrepreneurs, meet Thomas Pynchon.
Earlier today, Publishers Marketplace editor Sarah Weinman broke the news that Pynchon, who literary gadfly Harold Bloom called one of the four best American writers alive, will take on Silicon Alley in his next book. “The Bleeding Edge,” Pynchon’s first novel since 2009’s “Inherent Vice,” is set amid the New York startup scene “between the collapse of the dot-com boom and the terrible events of September 11.”
Our first thoughts? Well this isn’t exactly the most compelling era of New York tech for Pynchon to cover (try 2013). Not that it matters: If Pynchon can turn the story of Mason and Dixon into a surrealist romp involving conspiracies, robots, and talking dogs, I think he’ll find something interesting to say about this period.
That said, we wonder what other movements and characters from startup history would benefit from the Pynchon treatment. So if you count yourself within the thin sliver of Venn diagram space shared by Thomas Pynchon fans and startup enthusiasts, enjoy these rejected Pynchon tech novel ideas:
Vineland II – The dope-smoking hippie-nation PR³ from the first “Vineland” rebrands itself as an actual PR firm. It’s an easy pivot. Meanwhile, in a metaphor for the state of journalism, a militant film collective becomes so obsessed with Vine that they forget about their original quest to expose injustice. They do, however, make a really clever stop-motion clip that makes it look like a cat is cooking dinner. It gets over 2,000 Retweets.
Andreessen & Dixon – This 900-page tome documents a surprisingly eventful Virgin Airlines flight from New York to San Francisco where two entrepreneurs, Marc Andreessen and Chris Dixon, face a multitude of hardships including screaming babies, shoddy Wi-Fi, and a talking Henry Blodget that won’t stop liveblogging his lap.
The Crying of eBay Listing 49 – Social media marketer Oedipas Maas unearths a minutes-old conflict between Gmail and Hotmail. The novel ends with Maas bidding on eBay for more Twitter followers.
Against the Hsieh – A metahistorical retelling of Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh’s efforts to revitalize the Las Vegas startup scene, in which Hsieh travels through time and space in a magic Tesla Roadster, piloted by Nikola Tesla himself.
Gra-Viddy’s Rainbow – In a last ditch publicity stunt, the flailing video app Viddy fakes a fake hack on Twitter, though wasting so much time on Social Media Engagement™ leaves them vulnerable to a real hack. This glowing achievement in linguistics is written as a conversation between Horse_ebooks and a lolcat.