March 7, 2019

People are making moolah off of Michael Cohen’s testimony


Remember the testimony of Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen that literally just concluded days ago? Yeah, we all do. Or maybe you missed it. Or would like to read the full thing in a book. Well, now you can.

As of Tuesday, Michael Cohen’s House testimony, is now Michael Cohen’s House Testimony: The Complete Transcripts and Case Documents, courtesy of Diversion Books, an independent publisher based in New York (of course). And you know what, Cohen won’t see a dime of the sales.

Because the transcript of the testimony is public, Cohen does not own the rights to his own words. Anything Diversion makes off of this book will be solely Diversion’s to keep.

Look, we’re not one to say anything about crashing books created by congressional committees or funded programs (shoutout to The Climate Report, sup sup!), and it does sound like the Diversion team worked their butts off to get this book out only five days after the testimony wrapped up. Because actual public transcripts of the testimony aren’t out yet, Diversion CEO Scott Waxman described a more hands on approach to the New York Post, relying “on audio recordings that were cross-referenced with a closed-caption transcript from C-SPAN. We had three editors working on it to make sure it’s right.”

Cohen, who was once supposedly in talks with Hachette about the positivism of the Trump Revolution, now has no book deal. Evil Diversion, poor Cohen? Em, no, not quite. A three year prison sentence is a tidy amount of time to write a book that will surely sell, and hell, someone get me a ticket to the film adaptation, no fuck it, who can I call to land an uncredited role. After having worked on Trump / Russia, which we published last summer, I could easily pitch a cameo role or two to play.



Michael Barron is an editor at Melville House.