Debut Novel by Augusten Burroughs Coming to NBC

Adrian Versteegh

The first book and only novel by memoirist Augusten Burroughs is coming to television. Screenwriter Bryan Fuller (Heroes) and director Bryan Singer (The Usual Suspects) are partnering to adapt Sellevision (St. Martin’s, 2000), which focuses on four characters linked by a fictional home shopping channel, as an hour-long comedy-drama series for NBC.

“I love the world of home shopping—it’s such a rich world,” Fuller told Variety. “There are those great metaphors of consumerism, buying happiness, all of that chasing material thing.” Fuller also told the trade magazine that he sees ample potential for product placement in the new series, so long as “it’s in an organic way. Then it can be funny and part of the story.”

Sellevision had been slated for development as a feature film by producer—and former Home Shopping Network CEO—Mark Bozek, who first optioned the rights to Burroughs’s book. That project failed to take off, but Bozek will stay on as executive producer of the new show. Sellevision will be produced by Universal Media Studios, the television production arm of NBC. No timeline has been announced.

The new project will not be the first time Burroughs’s work has been adapted for the screen. Sony Pictures filmed Running With Scissors (St. Martin’s, 2002) in 2006, shortly after settling a lawsuit with a Massachusetts family who alleged that the story was defamatory. Burroughs, along with his publisher, reached a similar settlement with the family a year later.


I'm Sold on Sellevision!

Congratulations to Augusten Burroughs, Bryan Fuller and Bryan Singer. I have read two of Mr. Burroughs' books, first "Dry," followed by, "Magical Thinking." I enjoyed them both and am looking forward to checking out, "Sellevision" on NBC! What a dream come true for Augusten, to have his debut novel published and then adapted for television. This is a major accomplishment for any writer, but especially for a member of the LGBT community. My girlfriend, Jeri Estes, is also entering this exciting arena. She is represented by agent, Swanna MacNair of Fletcher and Company in NY. Jeri's debut, semi-autobiographical novel, "Stilettos and Steel," is about a young, middle class girl who escapes the oppressive suburbs of the San Fernando Valley during the 1960's and survives as a hard drag pimp in the red light Tenderloin district of San Francisco. United Talent Agency of Beverly Hills plans to make Jeri's story a major commercial project, following book publication, including a cable television series and a feature film! Jeri's novel is currently under review by the top publishing houses. To read more, visit the following links: Please join Jeri on Facebook to show your support for the project: Thank you Giselle Nagy


This sounds like a bit of a stretch, but I will certainly watch this idea and give it a chance. If they can put enough comedy into this series it should enhance the delivery a bunch. The home shopping network and drama do not sound like room mates at all. If the book was successful, a TV series would at least have a decent chance of surviving a tough business. Many programs that did well on TV have started with backgrounds that initially seemed very odd. Some were more odd than characters watching the shopping network.

Now that the boys have made it, how about the girls?

This is fabulous news for a male gay writer. His work is terrific. Millions of women are waiting for a gay woman author to make it mainstream, besides one lady from the UK. There's a thrilling, break through novel under review in Manhattan now. Jeri Estes has defied all stereotypes of LGBT literature through her protagonist, a sexy dyke pimp. Jesse fled the San Fernando Valley at sixteen, drawn to the Tenderloin district of San Francisco. The “TL” was a red-light district and the original gay ghetto of the west coast, prior to the Castro. The streets were alive with drug dealers, queers, pimps, hippies and whores. Vietnam soldiers and curious tourists braved its brothels and nightclubs under the watchful eyes of the dirty cops. Colorful queens peppered the sidewalks, dressed to the nines in high heels and high hair. To give you a glimpse of the rich history of the TL, below is a link to rare footage of the 1966 Compton’s Cafeteria riots. Surviving the hard-edged streets, Jesse enters the world of prostitution and discovers the gay subculture within it. Women gangsters lived by their own codes and values. Her trajectory from hooker to sophisticated pimp, catering to dirty politicians, crooked cops and bored housewives takes us on a journey that captures the imagination. Akin to the works of Richard Price and George Pelecanos, Jeri Estes reveals the gritty underbelly of American society. STILETTOS AND STEEL, the first in a three-book, pulp fiction series, is a throw-back to classic noir, complete with the genre’s traditional love story and wry sense of humor, with a fresh, new voice. Agent: FLETCHER AND COMPANY, Swanna MacNair