Seattle, Washington Anniversaries

Three years ago today, I uploaded this video to YouTube.

One year ago, I posted this one.


I watched it recently for the first time in a while. I’d been loafing around the house and feeling like a shut-in. It put me in a good mood, as it always does, and reminded me of some good times. That was actually the intended purpose when I started all this — something I could look back on to remind me of the places I’d been.

And that it is.

This being an odd-numbered year, I’ve got nothing to show you today.

I did put out a book recently, though. If you read this blog, you might’ve heard me mention it once or twice.

WTHIM_Cover

Here’s a sample chapter for download.

I’m working on putting up a little store on this site with a sales page. I’m going to include a custom inscription for anyone who orders from me. I won’t be able to match Amazon’s price, so I figure it’s the least I can do.

It’s not on Kindle, in case you were wondering. The book has several hundred photos inside, which makes that a tricky proposition, but not something I’d altogether rule out.

I got a call from my publisher on Thursday. They said it’s not selling great on the tables at Barnes & Noble and Borders. The stores will return copies if things don’t turn around.

Apparently the world is not clamoring for my life story.

I’m more or less unphased by that. I put out a book I’m proud of, minus a few details here and there. No one has told me to my face that it’s bad — or emailed it to my face for that matter. Everyone who’s read it seems mildly amused, which was all I was aiming for. I’d like for it to be successful, and I’ll do what I can to move copies, but the feeling of contentment remains either way.

There was a CNN interview brewing, but that went out the window when the Iranian people got all cranky about their totally legitimate and not-at-all-rigged election. For some reason CNN feels the need to provide round-the-clock coverage, which leaves me no time to promote my book. Some folks just have their priorities all out of whack. What can you do?

Plus, ya know, the publishing industry isn’t exactly going through a renaissance. Might as well say it. In switching from the newest medium to one of the oldest, a certain moribund quality seeps in.

Maybe I should’ve just blogged the book, or broken it into 2000 separate tweets to stay hip with what the young people are into. I just really wanted to write a book…or rather, to have written one.

And I did.

If you feel like buying it, that would make my publisher very happy. They would feel less regret over signing a YouTube star to a book deal, and that, by extension, would make me happy.

68 Responses to Seattle, Washington Anniversaries

  1. Frédéric

    For what it’s worth, I have ordered my copy on Amazon last week, and am currently waiting for it (in Switzerland)… so that’s a +1 on your sales figures…

    Frédéric

  2. Val

    Currently sitting on my coffee table. Works quite well as a conversation piece. Well done Matt. Hope you sell many more copies.

  3. Keith

    It’s on my amazon wishlist, although studiously ignored by family and friends for my birthday last month. What do they know anyway…
    However I would happily pay a premium to get one from your good self.

    Keith xoxox

  4. Mike Franks

    I pre-ordered it as soon as I could, and read it through. Though I had already read your journals online, it was a nice shorter refresh to your epic adventures. I hope the book does well overall, my local bookstore does not have it, though they said it was coming. I would have liked to have gotten a personalized one though, that would have been cool… oh well. Have a good one!

  5. I went on Amazon and clicked the “tell the publisher I’d like to read this on ebook” button. I’m one of those converts to the Kindle. Well done finishing the book! Thanks for the sample chapter.

  6. I’d like to buy it and will throw it in my amazon cart, but I won’t place the order right away because I would always rather buy from the author when that’s an option. I always love the stories behind stories (or movies or videos), so am glad you wrote the book. I look forward to reading it.

  7. Hi! My name is Frida and Iam from Sweden! I was visting NewYork a week ago, and saw a video of you dancing on a billboard on TimesSquare! Remembered your adress in my head (had no pen and paper) Two weeks later its still in my head and here Iam visiting your site. Did not no then that you had a book. Will check it out now!
    /Frida

  8. Jim

    Don’t get discouraged about B&N not selling a lot, i for one can’t wait to get my copy, although I’d rather buy from my local bookstore. Any chance you’re doing a signing in your hometown anytime soon?

  9. Chelsey

    Matt,
    Came to share in the experience, but stayed for the writing. Your rollicking adventures are both candid and relatable: if a sleep-deprived Mr.Bean were dressed in a hot dog suit in a room filled with puppies, the heart-warming results might characterize the nature of your journal. It’s also an excellent eye-opener for domesticated people such as myself, who cling to familiar surroundings with a parochial desperation bordering on pathetic. You are able to put into words your experiences so succinctly and captivatingly, and I am especially amused by your penchant for potentially life-threatening situations.

    Your book has moved to the top of my to-read list. I went out to buy it yesterday, but finding my local bookstore ill-equipped, I resolved to buy it online. However, I would imagine that obtaining a copy from yourself would be like standing in line at a Led Zeppelin concert knowing Robert Plant will be personally taking your ticket and high-fiving you on the way in.

    Congratulations on completing the book, I look forward to reading it.

  10. Peter Nacken

    Have you contacted the Daily Show or Colbert? That would be fun seeing you there .. and good book promo, too.

  11. Tee

    I bought 2 copies of your book on pre-order. One for a friend and one for me :-)

    Received them last week…Yippee!!

    Best of luck

  12. emily

    Now that I know you’re gonna write in it, I’ll wait for your store, but I can’t wait to read it personally. I have followed your blog for a long long time.. thru all your website iterations and all and will continue to! Thanks so much for all the funny stories you’ve shared.

    Bestest, Emily

  13. I pre-ordered and have read it once, have started it again. I just enjoy your writing so much! (And I am a published author, so I’m entitled to impress you when I say that.) The book is also handsomely put-together.

    I intend to be giving copies of it as Christmas presents this year, to which I will add a DVD with your videos on it. I don’t expect to bump your Amazon numbers enough to make a statistical difference, but if ALL your fans do something similar…

    And what better holiday gift than a smile that sits on a coffee table or toilet tank?

  14. Rich

    I hate to be the one to point this out, but it hasn’t exactly been marketed very heavily. I think that if everyone knew about it you would be doing very well with sales, but very few people know. How did people find out you had a new video? (#3) Because it was on the Youtube “top _____” list and it exploded from there. If you had slapped info for it at the end of a video that was on that list and millions of people would have known about it, sales would be much higher. Most people don’t make it to your website. :/ To me it’s not a content issue, it’s a question that most people don’t know it exists. Hopefully that will change in time.

    Rich

  15. Johnny C

    Matt – when are you gonna realize that THIS BLOG is your book! Just get it down on paper – its like the motorcycle diary by Che Guvara. The one story, with all the highlights, memories, frustration, feelings, honesty and passion – and thats all that we love about you man. This blog covers a true magical era, before your video hit it big time – meanwhile – and after.

    I started to read it from scratch and has made it into to beginning of 2006 and I just find it extremely inspiring to read! You visiting countries, putting your honest opinion and interesting ideas out there. Plus all the Wikipedia knowledge that you just throw in with your own easy going and humorous style. I can honestly say I have never been so enriched by a blog ever!

    I know you are a fan of angry video nerd and I feel the same urge to watch both you guys. There is always valid information, knife sharp wit and you are both guys that knows how to zoom out and look at the world with the eyes of the common reader/viewer.

    Don’t try so hard. Just be you. Get this blog into a book. And give it some style! No offense to your book cover – but it looks like it was made by local irish drunkard in 1992. To much orange, indiana jones and small photos. Your blog book should be of a cool, slick style with a brief color and a clean font.

    I will probably get this one cause you rock, but before I do, I’m gonna print this blog at work and make a stapled book about it to read when I get a chance. Its quality and quality is what we want.

    /best regards
    Europe

  16. Tom Carroll

    Given the cost of shipping which would really increase the cost of the book for those of us living outside the U.S. I am suggesting an alternative. Snail mail.
    We send you a self addressed stamped envelope with a copy of an invoice or receipt for our purchase and you send a little note. Do you really need or want the hassle of a store?
    Also for those international people (I am in Taiwan)the UK Book Depository offers free international shipping and Matt’s book link to bookdepository.co.uk

  17. Ricardo Alves

    Hey Matt,

    Is your book available in Europe?
    In Portugal? I can’t find.

    Cheers and keep dancing.

  18. Paolo

    Hope you’ll have it translated in many languages. I’d really love it in italian. :)
    Anyway, if you’ll take another journey around the world, let us know if you’re planning to come in Italy again.

    We hope to See ya soon.
    Keep Dancing!

  19. Barb, Loveland, Ohio

    Hi Matt (aka – world ambassador of dance & good humor),
    I have been reading your blog the past couple of years and love your stories and videos – they always lift my spirits and remind me to lighten up. Can’t wait to read your book.

    I Hope to see you put the store up on your site- would love to get a signed copy. (Way to go on getting the book written.)
    Barb

  20. Hi Matt,

    Long time reader, first time commenter.

    I’m sorry to hear about the low sales. I was hoping to see you touring with the book to be honest and it disappoints me that you’re not getting more backing. You have inspired multitudes of people, myself included, and I really feel like your story is being overlooked like so many important humanitarian stories do.

    I’ve already purchased a copy of the book but if you do a signed copy here I’d be glad to have that as well. I’ll be sure to pimp the book again on my blog, link to tru2myart.livejournal.com, and try to get the word out.

    Don’t be discouraged. The economy is at an all time low and right now is probably the worst time to try to promote a new book. But there are those of out here who are behind you 150%.

    I’m looking forward to your next adventure and if you happen to make it back to Chicago my family and I will be dancing with you. :)

    Penny

  21. Jonathan

    Matt,

    I danced with you in Austin and loved it. So I bought your book hoping to be in it. I wasn’t! lol

    But I really did enjoy reading it and your sense of humor.

    But on the back cover, the comment by USA Today “A word-of-mouse phenomenon…” I keep thinking that its supposed to be a play on words and I’m just not getting it. Or is it a typo?

  22. Gareth

    Just picked it up at the bookstore; too bad I didn’t see this post first, or I would have gotten it from you. I enjoy your writing style – very humble and matter of fact.

    I’m a cultural anthropologist; have you ever thought about pursuing a career in that area (that is, if the gum company ever pulls their sponsorship)? If so, look me, up, I live in Fremont and I’d be happy to take you out for a beer and relate whatever advice I can pull out of my ass. I’ve loved your videos for years now, and it’d be the least I could do.

    Cheers,
    Gareth

  23. TareX

    Hey Matt, I watched your videos, and was wondering why haven’t you been to Egypt yet? There are many sites to go to in Cairo, including The River Nile, The Citadel, Al Azhar Park, The Pyramids ….etc.

    Thanks :)

  24. Carol in Venice, CA

    Matt,
    I’m one of your “fans” who pre-ordered on Amazon. Personally, I loved reading it and I’ve passed it on. Maybe I shouldn’t have, less book sales! I hope the sales pick up. Anyway, after your book, I went and re-downloaded all your videos onto my desktop so I can watch them anytime I want a pick-me-up. Thanks for the smiles.
    Carol

  25. Matt: I am loving the book. I only have a few stories left to read. I showed it to all my friends at the Ed Media conference last week in Hawaii. I even included it in my talk. I will try to blog on it when I get a chance. Your stories are a key highlight in my upcoming, “The World is Open” book and the free e-book extension coming out soon. Publishers do not put much money behind book campaigns anymore. I have had to cough up a huge chunk of money for a publicist as well as programmers and Web designers for the book homepage, attorney, editor for the free e-book, etc. You have to create the hype. You can do it through your Website. You might create a video promoting the book with some unused footage perhaps. Unlike someone else who commented, I do like the cover.

  26. Vivian from Beijing

    Do you know how famous you are in China? I will order the book on your website. Waiting for you to post the sales link!

  27. John

    I agree with the Rich. Didn’t know book existed until today. How about a new project? “Where the hell is Matt’s book?”

  28. I pre-ordered mine as soon as you told us about it and have found it the perfect “gotta couple of minutes before I gotta…” book. You told just the stories I wanted to hear. BTW, forget CNN. Tell your agent to get you on The Daily Show. (Or were you on already and I missed you?)

  29. Carol

    Wasn’t sure where to post this but hey! I just saw you (I hope it was you!) doing the Matt dance in a Visa commercial! I live in South Korea; the card is visakorea.com

    How cool!

  30. Todd

    I hope you did not expect the sales in the stores to be great. Since your fame came from viral videos online, there are going to be a very large portion of people in the world who don’t even know about the book to know to pick it up in the stores when they see it. Sales off Amazon are definitely going to far exceed sales in a bookstore.

  31. David Vollmar

    Matt.
    I got your book from my 8 year old son for my birthday and it was the best present this year. (Well, the tickets to the B52’s concert were also pretty good!)
    He knows how much I enjoy your videos and he was tickled pink when he noticed your book in the local bookstore. So, please don’t get discouraged by low sales. There are lot of people on this planet who love you in a way that can’t be weighed in gold!
    Oh, have you ever read “Last Chance to See” from Douglas Adams? I thought you might enjoy it.
    Cheers
    David

  32. Briana

    Although I love your witty writing, I haven’t checked your site in quite a while. I was hoping that I would be surprised with a new video, but a book is also great! Congratulations on another “done that” check mark! You go, Matt! With this crappy economy and family responsibilities taking precedence to such an awesome adventure, I live vicariously through you! 😉

    I hope to have extra cash for purchasing the book when you get your store up and running. And, I love the “Where the Hell is Matt’s Book” idea previously posted–maybe you should go for it….

  33. Sander Buitelaar

    I second Debi’s comment, you should definitely go on The Daily Show. I don’t know how you would go about doing that, but I think it would fit really well with the show. I just read your book (I checked it out from the library) and I thought it was pretty good. You are funny (at times) and some of the stories are fascinating. Your videos are still some of the best things I have ever seen though.

    Well done Matt. Keep on dancin’

  34. Rosemarie Hogan

    Hi Matt, hope you and Melissa are happy and healthy and the book is
    doing well.

    Once again when I needed an emotional “pick me up”, I watched the
    Dancing 2008 and it lifted me up! Still has that affect on me! I am so
    happy to have been part of it.

    Tashe Delek,
    Rosemarie (one of your LA Dancers)

  35. Mary Frank

    I bought a copy of your book a couple of days ago and was really impressed by the candid stories you’ve told and really appreciate the photos. I’ve only just begun to travel outside the U.S. in the past 2 years and your videos (and now your book) give me plenty of trip ideas. Thanks! Tell Melissa that she did a superb job taping you (if that’s who did it).

  36. Mary Frank

    Oh yeah, my Barnes & Noble carried it! That’s where I bought it. Just so you know…this is in response to everyone who complained about not seeing it at their local B&N.

  37. Nilian

    I definitely would get the book. I hope you get the sales page up quickly, I rather a personalised copy than one from Amazon of cos!
    Your video clips never fail to bring a smile to my face even at my saddest times. Thank you.

    P.S. You will mail to Singapore yeah? I will pay for the international postage of cos.

  38. Debbie

    I really want the book but will wait for YOU to sell it. PLEASE keep doing things. Sell tshirts with your fav scenes from the videos (put a little “Thanks to Stride gum” at the bottom and they’ll help you.) Come dance in my hometown and I’ll make you a lobster dinner!

  39. jeni

    (i tried to send this to ur email add but it wont allow me,i dont know y..)hey matt hows u goin?i saw ur vedio 2008 u r kinda rock!!!
    i am a Chinese but i live in Perth Australia so if u come here 1 day plz email me i will go dance with u!!!also if u r goin to GuangZhou China or ZhengZhou China email me as well because i might be there as well:-)
    here’s my Chinese blog,u might interested in some of those pics even u cant read that…:blog.163.com/minerva-wen
    its so cold over here atm.hav a nice day!!!
    cheers
    Jen

  40. I get such a kick out of some people. This guy does something truly incredible and shares his inspiring experiences with us and some people still say things like “why didn’t you come to Milwaukee?”.

  41. Alison Holzmann

    Really bummed that I missed you while you were in Seattle but I have your book on my wishlist. I’m looking forward to dancing with you next time you’re in the NorthWest!

  42. yasuhiro

    i also contributed to the publisher and just finished to read your book. with the story behind the video, i really felt something more than earlier to watch the dancing video.
    the book is good enough to make my passion for traveling obsessed myself. oh, help me.

  43. lynn lamoureux

    Hello Matt!

    Would you meet me and my kids so we can dance together in India or thailande if you are around? We will be in Rishikesh the 6 of october for a wile. what a plaisure looking you dancing without nothing to say.

    Lynn

  44. Roopal Gadhia

    Matt, I’m making sure it’s doing the rounds on facebook. As I’m sure you know i’ts all about word of mouth and awareness. The internet is your friend – the book will sell but people need to know about it! I only just found out about the book as I read your blog, but I’ve been watching this video since you posted on youtube! Have a link to your sales page on the clip…over 22 million views! Even 1% of those would make the publishers happy.
    Best of luck buddy.

  45. canaria

    desde canarias,aunque seguramente no me entenderas,felicidades por dar esa imagen de alegria.
    buen viaje.

  46. John M

    My girlfriend bought the book for me. I traveled and did a world tour once (not nearly as extensive as yours) and I am now reading your book one entry at a time to keep my sanity since I have not been traveling. Good on you for doing a real book. Keep it real Matt.

  47. Hey Mat,

    You live the life of my dream! Happen u be in Tbilisi, Georgia (small country sandwiched between Turkey and Russia) I will bring an army of dancers for u!

    And I am pretty confident your book is going to be a bestseller! I will be buying one!

    Cheers,
    Rati

  48. Kathryn Baker

    I pre-ordered your book from Amazon and have since received it and read it through. Love it! I have also bought it for my Kindle DX, which I am obsessed with. You have given me so much joy with your video. I have watched it dozens of times and each time it reminds me that there is true good and wonder in the world. It gives me hope for the future and for the human race. Thank you so very much.

  49. Matias

    Hola Matt, como estaS? espero que bien jeje, soy de Buenos Aires Argentina, me encantaron tus videos sos genial, a mi tambien me dicen Matt porque me llamo Matias, jajaja.
    Bueno un saludo, :)

  50. Matt, you are the best, when I saw the video showing you and your dance, much like our Matt, and now look at you won a fan in this world has never seen a video so creative, congratulations Matt, you’re the best!

  51. I wouldn’t care too much if it isn’t a big seller. You’ve made millions of people smile around the world. Not bad for someone who just posted a video of his holiday exploits. You’ve become a celebrity for all the right reasons Matt. People like YOU. Your rise to fame has not been simply fueled by your exploits making the tabloids. People enjoy watching what you get up to.

  52. fariha

    hey matt.love your blog.was just wondering if you plan to come to Pakistan?it would be pretty cool if you did.
    thanks for initiating this blog.

  53. A year ago, a blogger mentioned abt “Where the hell is Matt” to me and I thought what was that! And now then I came to this great site after clicking thru some links, what a shame!

    Recently, I saw a commercial about some people dancing and now I knew that they must have gotten the inspiration from your travel video. Very inspiring indeed! 😀

  54. I’m from the northwest (born in Pullman and brought up in Moscow, ID) and have many friends and acquaintances in the Seattle area. I heard about your youtube video a few years ago and bookmarked it so I could watch it whenever.

    Now it’s been almost 3 years and I still love to watch your video and feel the joy of you and those around you! Thank you so much. Really truly thank you!

  55. RANDY RIVERA ANAYA

    I’m cuban and I’would like if its possible that you visit my country, exactly Santiago de Cuba.
    I have not seen your e-mail in this web, so I would like send you a photo of incredible view.
    THANKS READ IT.
    yours
    RANDY

  56. Sophie Harif

    I’ve just bought a copy so that’s another +1.

    Maybe it’ll provide me with some more material for my pupils (don’t know if you remember, but I wrote to you some two years ago to tell you that I would use your videos in class. )

    Hope you’re AOK

    Take care

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