My second piece of good news is that this week, I accepted a book deal with Penguin. A book based on Nee Naw is planned for publication in January 2010. At the moment, the format of the book is still being decided, but it’s likely to contain a selection of my favourite posts from the blog with lots of new and exciting previously unseen stories.

Here is the announcement on Book Brunch.

Penguin have bought the UK and Commonwealth rights for the book, for enquiries about other rights, please contact my agent, Isabel White.

As for my real identity, the book is being published under my real name, so it’s time to come out. Most of you already know that Mark Myers is a pseudonym, but what you may not have realised it that I’m not actually a bloke. I am girl and my real name is Suzi Brent.

Needless to say, this week has been something of a whirlwind for me. I’m expecting to wake up any second now and find out I’ve fallen asleep in the middle of a nightshift and dreamed the lot…

Published Jan 31, 2009 - 79 Comments and counting

79 Comments on “Big Announcement”
  1. Steve Says:

    Now that deserves a bigger congrats than the promotion news. I must admit to being a bit jealous of you.

  2. Rick Says:

    OMG! Congratulations!
    OMG! You’re a lady!

  3. Steve Says:

    I’ve gotta say, your real name came as a big surprise. You had me fooled.

  4. Lesley Says:

    Wow, that’s wonderful news. And I had absoluting no inkling that you were a woman either!

  5. Bill Kenway Says:

    Well Done. That’s one of the bravest things I think I’ve ever seen on a blog. You are an excellent read, and I am looking forward to the book.

    Good luck – you deserve it.

  6. TomDimmock Says:

    Oh my god…I have been a reader for a long time, and didn’t realise you were a woman! Jeez, I think that came as a big shock for me – haha

    Congratulations on the book!

  7. Sandra May Says:

    I knew you were a woman for about a year now! I’m so excited for you! Good luck!

  8. Sara Wasson Says:

    That’s absolutely fantastic Suzi :)

  9. Rachel Says:

    Congratulations! I don’t know why but I initially thought you were a lady and had to re-wire my brain to think of you as a man. Time to un-re-wire!

  10. Andy Says:

    Well, it makes the pink hair and the royal butler stories easier to visualise…

    A good friend of mine makes a point of disguising her gender online all the time – she finds she’s more likely to get her opinions listened to.

    Congratulations on the book. Will buy, of course.

  11. Lumo Says:

    Hoorah! Can’t wait. Congratulations :)

  12. Chapati Says:

    CONGRATS again!!! Wow :D

  13. Sarahnova Says:

    OH MY GOD! I totally did not know you were a woman. But it’s awesome. Congratulations.

    (Note to self: start disguising gender online to achieve book deal.)

  14. mc1rvariant Says:

    Waheyyy!!!!! Chuffed for you! Might well be buying copies for xmas, birthdays etc.

  15. Almost American Says:

    Congratulations!

  16. Me Says:

    That’s wonderful! Congratulations on the book deal! I will definitely buy a copy. Don’t let anyone focus on the male/female thing — what really matters is that you are a great writer, you work hard, and you are a brave person that really cares about people.

  17. Rachelc Says:

    Congratulations on the promotion and the book deal. Looking forward to it, always love your stories about what goes on at the other end of the phone

  18. Auntie Jane Says:

    Very well done… It’s not easy getting a book deal, especially these days. Congratulations. I know how you feel having had a few books published. It’s a great feeling.

    Put me down for a copy… I always enjoy reading your blog so I know I’ll enjoy the book.

  19. Damien Says:

    Congratulations on the book, and on the promotion of course! What a great start to the year.

    Reading your blog helped me decide on a career change, and I’m starting EMD training next week :) I even mentioned you in my interview, maybe I got bonus points for that..

    (Also I’m glad to see I wasn’t the only one surprised to find out you’re not male.)

  20. peej Says:

    Man! Now I have to go back and re-read all the posts from the beginning.
    :D
    Congratulations on the book deal!
    Hope you keep writing and don’t drop off the web like the other blogger-turned-book-writers have.
    (Though I’m sure you’re going to be severely pressed for time now.)

  21. Mama Mia Says:

    Congratulations Suzi! And knowing you are a girl in real life makes it even better! Well done…

  22. Andrew Says:

    Congratulations Mark^H^H^H^HSuzi. The pink hair and butler come over a bit differntly knowing you are of the fairer sex. Good luck with the book.

  23. kingmagic Says:

    Good skills Suzi!
    Congrats on all your hard work.
    Will buy the book defo.
    Kingmagic (Purpleplus)

  24. Nonamoose Says:

    That’s fantastic news! I will put that on the to buy list once I know when it’s coming out etc.

    Well done!

    I had no idea you were a woman – you were just nee naw to me lol.

  25. Emma Says:

    Congratulations! I barely comment on this but have read from the very beginning – I already knew you were a girl – as we were friends on Livejournal many years ago! Congratulations again!

  26. caramaena Says:

    Congratulations Suzi!!! That is just fantastic news :D

    I’ll be looking out for the book too.

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  29. Nia Says:

    :O congratulations! can anyone point me in the direction of the pink hair and butler stories being mentioned?

  30. Gert Says:

    Reynolds said you were a woman but I thought that can’t be right, s/he’s called Mark!

    Congratulations!

  31. Lady Macbeth Says:

    Congrats, Miss Mark (it has a sort of a ring to it :P )

    Looking forward to the book :)

  32. Alexis Says:

    Congrats! I have been reading for a long time and thought that you were a well-read, insightful male (which kinda was a bit of a shock in the beginning because…insightful and male usually don’t go together in the same sentence. Now I’m pleasantly surprised. I hope in the coming year that your book deal goes well and I shall continue to wait for your next post. =)

  33. KGL Says:

    Big Congratulations to you Suzi – I had no idea, i shall be waiting in anticipation for your book, and good luck with it all!!!

  34. Amy Says:

    Yay Suzi!

  35. Dave Says:

    Makes a little more sense, you being female I mean.
    In your 10 facts about me (Mark Myers) you list:
    5) I was once propositioned by the royal butler responsible for walking the Queen’s corgis.
    9) Having pink hair on being hired.
    I’m still disappointed the Queens butler isn’t Gay (aren’t they supposed to always be gay? obviously not…)
    Congratulations, well deserved.
    Regards
    Dave

  36. Alexx Says:

    This is such fantastic news, well done you!

  37. Dullahan_999 Says:

    Double congrats! (the book and promotion, not for being female …. hmm that sounded wrong but you get the idea lol)

  38. Posh Totty Says:

    Whooo thats great news, well done and congrats :o ) Xxx

  39. Jo Says:

    Congratulations! I will look forward to getting the book when it comes out :-D

  40. SteveT Says:

    Shame you gave out your real name; you could have waited to be outed by the tabloids.

    Anyway, congratulations!

  41. Stephen Irwin Says:

    WOW….are you good looking?

    Congratulations

  42. Vinaigrette girl Says:

    Great news on the book deal. I’m very disappointed that you felt had to lie about your gender for so long, though. I feel lied to, in a big way, for no good reason. I was so delighted to think that at long last there was a man with that much insight and analytical ability posting from the ambulance service, although I am glad that you do the job you do and you’re willing to keep on doing it. But I am bowing out of keeping up with posts; whatever else is going on, I don’t care for the deception involved. Good luck with your future career.

  43. EX EMD Says:

    Vinaigrette girl – Are you for real?

    Well done Suzi, can’t wait for the book!

  44. Mark Myers Says:

    Vinaigrette Girl: I’m surprised and shocked at your attitude. I didn’t “feel I had to lie”. I picked the name Mark Myers because it was the name of a childhood hero of mine. I wanted a pseudonym and the first one that sprang to mind that I liked was a man’s name. Plus I thought it would make it a little harder for colleagues to pick me out! Nothing about my job is specific to being a man or woman so I didn’t think it was relevant. I have been quite clear on the fact that whoever I am, I am not Mark Myers, so I really am not sure why you feel “deceived”. Your comment is also somewhat insulting to men in general, you seem to be implying that you thought a man would not be capable of my “insight and analytical ability” – is that what you meant to say, because it really does come across as rather sexist.

    And Stephen: Soon I’ll get a decent photo of myself to put on here, so you can judge for yourself, but given the fact that I wear a horrible green uniform and have never had enough sleep, the honest answer is “probably not”. Sorry! ;)

  45. Sarah Says:

    Wow, I never would have guessed in a million years that you were a lady-person. Your “voice” always sounded very male. Now I wonder how much of that was just because I assumed “Mark Myers” was a real person, and if your “voice” will change in my perception now that I know the truth :)

    And very much congratulations!

    But wow, man, I am still shocked :D

  46. Dan Says:

    Congrats Suzi, love the blog and so happy for you, well done!!

    By the way, is this you?? http://reddragdiva.fotopic.net/p4794239.html

    Just curious – pink hair and all that :-)

    Lv Dan xx

  47. Mark Myers Says:

    Dan, yes it is indeed – good detective work! That photo is about five years old, though – you wouldn’t recognise me now from it!

  48. Dan Says:

    Suzi,

    I thought you looked gorgeous, love the goth look :-)

    All the best x

  49. Dan Says:

    http://reddragdiva.fotopic.net/p2050893.html

    If this is you now or even similar, you are so gonna be innundated with requests for dates :-)

  50. Mark Myers Says:

    That one is even older than the pink hair one. Try this one, it was taken on Saturday: http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=1836300&l=4e133&id=624532750

  51. Tom Says:

    Such great news Suzi, congratulations. I hope you’re still able to keep the blog going, it’s such a thoughtful read.

    And good luck with the snow…

  52. Mark Myers Says:

    The blog will definitely still be going – in fact, there should be more posts because I’ll be at home more (the promotion means no more overtime). But I will also be keeping a few stories saved for the book!

  53. Erin Says:

    I think Vinaigrette Girl must have had a bit of a crush on you and now she knows you’re a girl cannot cope with the concept. :P

    I think it’s so brilliant this book deal, and you have no idea how jealous I am, but so going to be buying it and have it do the pass around the control room. I keep kicking all the newbies to read your blog, now I’ll have a physical form in which to wave under their noses.

    And the girl thing, I had to say I had my doubts when you were whinging about the uniform bum factor. That sounded distinctly girly, and is something I think all the female uniform wearers grumble about in the same fashion.

  54. joe Says:

    Hello Suzy
    I am a big fan but I’m afraid to tell you that your secret was not so secret. I explain, it came out during a BWTS discussion list few months ago, the silly people who frequent there (me included) have done a post about blogs and your secret come out .
    Sorry.

  55. Mark Myers Says:

    Joe: Heh, I knew it wasn’t a secret any more – I was outed in control years ago. Didn’t realise I was being discussed on BWTS though! There do seem to have been a few people who didn’t know though (like the mortally offended Vinaigrette Girl!)

  56. ZXY Says:

    Hey! Congratulations!
    I know its still early but any idea on the title yet?
    I imagine if it is Nee Naw some mother would buy it for her young child thinking it was a cute story about paramedics brings plasters to teddy bears and what not… and the heated conversation with the store manager that’ll happen the next day! “oh my Flying Spaghetti Monster! I read 3 chapters to her before I realized what the hell was going on! This stuff is more graphic than the German Teletubbies Gone Wild DVD I bought her!”

    I would wish you luck with the book but after reading the whole blog i know you will have no problem with it :)

  57. ellie Says:

    wow!! thats awesome!i think i love you even more now… :)

  58. Sarah Says:

    Jesus, I think we have several online mutual friends, in the LJ and Facebook worlds! Certainly I’m well familiar with the name reddragdiva cropping up in friends LJ comments. Olethros would be the one that springs most to mind, and possibly Kuang. Maybe even joexnz. Whitby-types in general :)

    This world. It is too tiny. I’m scared.

  59. Dorota Says:

    Gosh, Suzi, congratulations and well done! I’m not surprised you haven’t had much time to blog very often recently.

    I must say I am in a bit of a shock as to your true identity, and I in a way feel for Vinaigrette Girl. I was starting to develop a crush on Mike Myers as well – such a sensitive, caring, intelligent, funny guy, with so much empathy, and such a good writer (no spelling mistakes!) And he saves people’s lives! There aren’t many guys like that, you must admit. I also liked your portrait logo that you created for the ‘Vote for my Blog’ campaign – it’s exactly how I imagined Mark. But you know what? It’s great you’re a girl, because now I won’t have to be jealous of any woman he might go out with :)

    On a more serious note, perhaps Mark as a literary character deserves a life of his own? If you discover that a writer’s career is for you, perhaps there’s another (fiction?) book waiting to be written, with Mark as the protagonist?

    Best wishes to you and thanks for everything I learned from your blog!

  60. Mark Myers Says:

    Dorota, it’s funny you say that, because I *have* been working on some fiction with Mark as the lead character. And if this book goes well, I’ve love it to be my second. I know exactly what you mean, because I think I have a bit of a crush on Mark too (after all, I created him!) and when I was removing references to him from my blog the other day, I felt almost as if I was dumping him. Or killing him!

  61. Dorota Says:

    Gosh, Suzi, congratulations and well done! I’m not surprised you haven’t had much time to blog very often recently.

    I must say I am in a bit of a shock as to your true identity, and I in a way feel for Vinaigrette Girl. I was starting to develop a crush on Mike Myers as well – such a sensitive, caring, intelligent, funny guy, with so much empathy, and such a good writer (no spelling mistakes!) And he saves people’s lives! There aren’t many guys like that, you must admit. I also liked your portrait logo that you created for the ‘Vote for my Blog’ campaign – it’s exactly how I imagined Mark. But you know what? It’s great you’re a girl, because now I won’t have to be jealous of any woman he might go out with :)

    On a more serious note, perhaps Mark as a literary character deserves a life of his own? If you discover that a writer’s career is for you, perhaps there’s another (fiction?) book waiting to be written, with Mark as the protagonist?

    Best wishes to you and thanks for everything I’ve learned from your blog! I’ll keep reading.

  62. Dorota Says:

    Oh no! Please don’t kill him, or I’ll have to call 999!

  63. Kilo Says:

    Congragtulations Suzy, good luck with the book deal and well done with the promotion. I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog. You give readers a real feel for the work of us EMDs.

  64. Natalie Says:

    Well a big congratulations, and wow, you’re a girl! :)

  65. Amy from Bromley Says:

    Phwoar Suzi you’re well fit ;-)

  66. loulou Says:

    Yet another LAS staff book deal. Congrats.
    As for the “shock horror Mark’s a girl!!” I’ve always known you were as I work in control. Out of interest, are you REALLY a fan of the glamour model Jordan like you say in “About Mark”? The pale, pierced, goth and fake tan, pink, fluffy, glam don’t really go well together.

  67. Penni Says:

    Wow Suzi, I never saw that one coming. Well done on writing a great blog. I’m looking forward to the book coming out, and errr….. I’d love to have some more of Mark as well.

  68. Marjorie Says:

    Congratualtions! (De-lurking to comment)
    I thought you were a woman when I first strated reading, then say the name ‘Mike’ and thought I must be wrong! Obviosuly instinct is better then I thougt.

  69. Mark Myers Says:

    loulou: Yes, I really do love Jordan! I have all her books and the exercise video and a set of Jordan underwear. (But not the perfume, it smells like Chewits). I think I like her precisely because she is so different from me!

  70. anickdaler Says:

    Ah, it all finally makes sense. I was on the same post as you at the London Marathon with SJA 2 years ago which I realised when you blogged about it (and mentioned the post number). I did spend a while wondering which of the blokes was you as none seemed very likely.

    Now it makes sense. You are in fact a woman. That’s one more of lifes little mysteries solved.

  71. loulou Says:

    Well you are full of surprises! Well done again and also on the promotion (which I forgot to mention before) very well deserved!

  72. Dogsbody Says:

    Huge congratulations :-)

  73. Me Says:

    Well done you!!

    Cant wait for the book!

  74. Bardsworld Says:

    Congratulations on the book deal! Yours was the first emergency services blog I came across when I realised as an ex-pat I missed chatting with my best mate and his ambo-buddies over 2 years ago, so I look forward to getting some Nee-Naw in print.

    As for the shock news, I think most regulars had guessed ;)

  75. Rachel Says:

    Congratulations. I discovered your blog whilst I was pregnant and bored at home about 3 years ago and its SUCH quality I am not surprised you’ve got a book deal. Nice one!! Well done! xx

  76. Troper Man Says:

    well, I would never have believed it! A lady in disguise. Doesn’t affect your blog or the postings you write. keep up the brill work and congrats on the book deal. I look forward to buying and reading it.

    Regards
    Trooper Man

  77. Crazy Nurse Says:

    Many congrats! I’ve been Reading for a couple of years now always assumed you were a man. Knew MM was a pseudonom though. Are the facebook piccies quite recent?? Not noticed them before

  78. Yahoo Hosting Coupon Says:

    penguin are a great company, nice one

  79. XaDvAnT Says:

    I hope there will be an audio book for us vision impaired readers!

    Nee Naw
    Nee Naw was a blog about life in the London Ambulance Service control room. It was written by Suzi Brent from 2005 to 2010. The blog is no longer being updated, but the archives will remain here.
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