The author that the president has called "mentally deranged" is back at work, preparing a follow-up to his Washington, D.C. tell-all: Michael Wolff is writing a Fire and Fury sequel. Axios reported that Wolff signed with the same publisher, Henry Holt, but the details of the book are still being worked out.
"It's untitled, unscheduled, unfocused," Wolff told Axios. That might be because he cannot go about writing the second book as he wrote the first. He interviewed many White House staffers, who were unsuspecting of his plans to write a book based on what they said. Plus, one of Wolff's main sources, Steve Bannon, no longer works for the president.
The biggest insight comes from Wolff himself, who told Axios, "It'll obviously deal with American politics at this point in time." Beyond that, it's anyone's guess what it will cover. What is clear is that Trump is unlikely to approve if it's anything like the last option.
“So much Fake News is being reported,” the president wrote on Twitter after the last book was released. “They don’t even try to get it right, or correct it when they are wrong. They promote the Fake Book of a mentally deranged author, who knowingly writes false information. The Mainstream Media is crazed that WE won the election!”
That was one of many comments Trump tweeted. “I authorized Zero access to White House (actually turned him down many times) for author of phoney book!” Trump also posted. “I never spoke to him for book. Full of lies, misrepresentations and sources that don’t exist. Look at this guy’s past and watch what happens to him and Sloppy Steve!”
Press Secretary Sarah Sanders also took aim at the book. “This is a guy who made up a lot of stories to try to sell books, and I think more and more people are starting to see that his facts just simply don’t add up,” Sanders said.
The most controversial statements that were included in the book largely were attributed to Bannon (or as Trump reportedly called him, "Sloppy Steve"). Wolff quoted him as saying about the Trump campaign meeting in Trump Tower with the Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya:
The three senior guys in the campaign thought it was a good idea to meet with a foreign government inside Trump Tower in the conference room on the 25th floor – with no lawyers. They didn’t have any lawyers. Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately.
Bannon, after the quotes were released, clarified that he was not talking about Donald Trump Jr., one of the senior members at the meeting. Instead, he said he was talking about then Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort. He also complimented the president.
"I regret that my delay in responding to the inaccurate reporting regarding Don Jr has diverted attention from the president's historical accomplishments in the first year of his presidency," Bannon wrote in his statement.
The book — truthful or not — sold extremely well. In the United States, it sold 2 million copies and worldwide it sold almost another 2 million. Publishers likely hope to repeat that success.
If you can't wait for this second book to come out, there's a TV show that is in development. Emmy-winner Jay Roach, who has directed political productions for HBO in the past, was announced to be the director attached to the project in March.
So, for readers who enjoyed the first copy, there is plenty more Fire and Fury to come.