A BEST-SELLING Amer-ican author who created an online football team called the Swindon Swoodilypoopers will visit the town in person as part of a UK tour.
John Green, a self-confessed nerd, has led his side to glory in the virtual world, with tens of thousands of fans following the Roy of the Rovers adventures.
He plays as Swindon Town on FIFA before uploading the games to YouTube together with his commentary, which often strays into his thoughts on life.
Numerous Facebook and Twitter profiles are also dedicated to the players – who include his computer-generated creations Fat Lucas and Bald John Green.
But while the heroics are played out online, Green is a star player in the literary world.
He is a New York Times best-selling author who has already written three solo novels.
Green’s latest work, The Fault In Our Stars, has already received critical acclaim.
The plot follows a 16-year-old girl with terminal cancer whose life changes when she meets a boy and they set out on a journey which changes everything they took for granted.
The New York Times bestseller was described as ‘damn near genius’ by Time magazine.
The town’s annual literary festival aside, Swindon might not be an obvious stop-off point for American authors touring new books but Green, from Indianapolis, Indiana, has already sold out 500 seats for his appearance at the Steam museum on February 7.
Commercial manager Ian Surtees said: “When Waterstones got in touch to make the booking saying they had a prominent author, I first thought they meant someone like JK Rowling, as you would need an author of that stature to warrant using the hall. “When they said it was John Green I did some investigating and it was clear he has a massive following. We have completely sold out despite only posting the listing online in the week before Christmas.”
The prize-winning novelist has previously told the Adver he chose Swindon because his brother played as Arsenal, who The Robins beat in 1969 to win the former League Cup.
A spokesman for Waterstones said: “John Green is hugely popular in Swindon as he is wherever he goes. He is one of the biggest authors around at the moment.”
But despite the rave reviews the web savvy 35-year-old and his brother Hank, who will also appear at Steam, describe themselves as ‘nerdy brothers who make videos’.
While selling out the hall at Steam is no mean feat, Green has more than 1.2m followers on Twitter while more than 75m people have viewed the brothers’ YouTube channel.