TIL Dmitry Glukhovsky wrote the novel ‘Metro 2033’ when he was 18. He published the novel on his website available for free. This eventually led to a video game deal with 4A Games & a comic deal with Dark Horse comics.

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Still have the heavily accented “Artyom” or more accurately “ARTI YOMM” burned into my brain from one play through a long time ago.

Sneakaux1

He published the first book chapter by chapter online and people gave him hints & tips he incorporated (esp. about the non-public metro layout). Also, because he as a kid always hated waiting for his favorite author to release more content, he gave permission for other authors to use the metro universe. He explicitly encouraged people to write about their home town/city in this universe. There are several books written by fans, which got picked up and released by the publisher. Some of those, especially the ones about St Petersburg are really good. I remember one which could be thought of as giving the idea for the metro-exodus game.

elPocket

Buddy of mine in high school had a copy of 2033 that he let me borrow. I freaking loved that book

GeraltofIndiana

Same happened to Andy Weir with The Martian, though it was picked up as novel before being picked up as a movie. It was available freely on his website before that.

Aquam8te

Really cool guy – he came to my high school to give a talk before covid hit

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