Sunday, December 02, 2007

Hyperion Will Publish Randy Pausch's Last Lecture

Hyperion will publish Dr. Randy Pausch's THE LAST LECTURE, to be written with Jeff Zaslow of the Wall Street Journal.

On September 18, computer science professor Randy Pausch stepped in front of an audience of 400 people at Carnegie Mellon University to deliver his last lecture called "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams." With slides of his CT scans beaming out to the audience, at the beginning of his talk, Randy forthrightly told everyone about the cancer that is devouring his pancreas and that will claim his life in a matter of months according to his doctors. He went on to say, "We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."

Since delivering this speech, more than 6 million people have gone online to view the lecture. This number, which grows by the minute, includes an estimated 3.6 million people who have sought out the full hour-long talk on Google Video, You Tube, the Carnegie Mellon site, or through other links. His talk grew quickly and massively in popularity because hundreds of thousands of people sent friends emails about him or embedded his lecture video on their blogs. Fueling this online phenomenon, Wall Street Journal columnist Jeff Zaslow attended and covered the lecture for the September 20th edition of the paper. Zaslow's column and the accompanying 5-minute highlight video on set readership and viewership records at the newspaper. Pausch subsequently appeared on "The Oprah Winfrey Show, "Good Morning America," and "CBS Evening News with Katie Couric." In total, more than 25 million people have seen Pausch on these various television programs and the now 343,000 websites that refer or link to his lecture.

Hyperion President Robert S. Miller and Editorial Director Will Balliett negotiated the deal with David Black and Gary Morris of The David Black Agency. Will Balliett will edit the book which is scheduled to publish in spring, 2008. Hyperion retains world rights.