The Anorexic Startup – A Tale of Sex, Drugs, and C++

I read this book because the guy who wrote it, Mike Frankel, dropped me a line after he saw some tweets about the Lean Startup talk Eric Ries gave last week. It is available as a free eBook, took less than 10 minutes to read and made me laugh. Of course the premise that an absurd app might take off in any way is ridiculous but suspend your disbelief…

If you are an Amazon Prime member, it is free here.

“I’m stunned that Apple would approve my ridiculous software. My product now joins an exclusive brotherhood of 600,000+ apps. I pull out my iPhone, click on the app store, and search. There it is! The icon, which I originally dismissed as amateurish, looks remarkably professional surrounded by Apple’s sleek store and a $2.99 price tag. So much to do! Ok, let me pull up the marketing strategy I wrote a few weeks ago.

1) Get in Apple Store.

2) Tell your Facebook friends.

Hmm. I thought I wrote a more robust plan than that.”

If you are not an Amazon Prime member, you can download the story from Mike’s site for free too.

“A $20 million valuation. A week ago, I couldn’t imagine an interested investor, but after the past few days, their valuation seems low. I’ve generated over $255,000 in less than a week. Yes, sales are likely concentrated from the viral boost, so extrapolating the last few days of sales is misleading, but I do have proven user interest in this
 product. I also have other investors knocking on my door. Should I wait for another
 offer? Oh, here comes the cheesecake.


An excited laugh fills the table, and we all shake hands. Duggan orders a round of
 Champagne for us. It feels good to be part of a team.”

Of course, we are nowhere near a market bubble at the moment so the story has no relevance today. Bet you can’t guess how it turns out?