- Mike Allen
Conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos’ book rose to the top spot on the Amazon best-seller list on Friday, about 24 hours after it was announced.
Preorders of the book, “Dangerous,” put it ahead of Tim Ferriss’ “Tools of Titans” and just behind the late Carrie Fisher’s “The Princess Diarist.”
Yiannopoulos reacted to the news on Facebook.
“WE F—ING DID IT,” he wrote in a post.
Yiannopoulos announced on Thursday that he had inked a book deal with Simon & Schuster reportedly worth $250,000.
“I met with top execs at Simon & Schuster earlier in the year and spent half an hour trying my hardest to shock them with lewd jokes and outrageous opinions,” he said. “I thought they were going to have me escorted from the building – but instead they offered me a wheelbarrow full of cash.”
Business Insider recently conducted a brief Q&A with Yiannopoulos:
Oliver Darcy: There’s been a lot of criticism aimed at Simon & Schuster after the announcement of your book. Some are calling for a boycott of the company. What’s your response?
Milo Yiannopoulos: As is now painfully obvious from my Twitter ban, boycotts tend to make the shunned more popular. Simon & Schuster apparently understands this, which makes them the smartest of the big publishers.
Darcy: Did you talk to any other publishers? Did any reject you?
Yiannopoulos: Of course. We spoke to everyone. But Threshold Editions at Simon & Schuster were my first choice, and I was thrilled they wanted me.
Darcy: You are often associated with the alt-right, but you yourself say you don’t identify yourself as sharing the movement’s politics. What specifically turns you off to the movement?
Yiannopoulos: There are some fringe factions of the alt-right that have demonstrated genuinely racist, anti-Semitic, and prejudiced leanings. They clearly don’t want a Jewish, homosexual, black-d— supremacist as a spokesman. And I don’t want to be associated with them, either. I like the free-speech stuff, the political-correctness stuff. And I believe in and love the populist, nationalist, antiglobalist rebellion happening all over the West.
Darcy: In the press release about your book, you talk about being banned from Twitter and suggest it hasn’t harmed your brand. But, as some observers have noticed, when you were banned, Google searches for your name dramatically dropped. Are you sure being exiled from the platform hasn’t hurt you?
Yiannopoulos: Those observers were liars. The opposite happened. They used selectively chosen Google Trends graphs to claim something that wasn’t true. I mean, this is the period during which I blasted through a million fans on Facebook in a matter of months. This is how desperate the left is to shoo me out of the spotlight. Well, sorry, but I will not be shooed. And with all the drama around this book, it’s safe to say searches for my name have never been higher. The only thing that has dropped since my ban is Twitter’s stock price.
- Simon & Schuster
Darcy: Your book will touch on Black Lives Matter. I imagine it’s not in the friendliest terms. What would you say to conservative pundits like Glenn Beck who have called for the right to empathize more with these individuals?
Yiannopoulos: I’m not in the business of being “friendly.” First and foremost, I’m a journalist. My business is the truth. Now, I happen to be other things, too – a pop-culture phenomenon, the most in-demand speaker on the campus lecture circuit, whatever. But I believe in facts. Glenn Beck lost his mind in this election, and he’s the last person any conservative or libertarian should be taking seriously. I want us to win again. Trump and I do.
Darcy: “Dangerous” promises to be very provocative. What would you say to critics who argue you’re too provocative?
Yiannopoulos: I hope to offend every reader.
Darcy: You were one of the top Trump backers in 2016, and your strongest critiques of him came when he tried to tame his tone.
Have you been satisfied with his Cabinet appointments and moves since he won the election? He did break his promise to appoint a special prosecutor to go after Hillary Clinton and has been fairly complimentary toward President Obama.
Yiannopoulos: Oh God, I wish he’d just “lock her up!” Perhaps someone has told him that as president he only gets a couple of guaranteed wins, and this would be a waste. And maybe it’s petty and vindictive and ridiculous. But answer me honestly: Who doesn’t want to see that front page?
Darcy: A while ago there was a lot of hype about a Ben Shapiro-Milo debate. Is it going to happen?
Yiannopoulos: Ben who?
Editor’s note: This story has been updated with new information. Additionally, Milo Yiannopoulos has previously authored columns published by Business Insider.