Sotheby’s, the renowned auction house and brokerage firm for art, jewelry, and collectibles, has announced that it will be auctioning the original manuscript of Neil Stephenson’s Snow Crash, the book that introduced the term “metaverse” over 30 years ago. The auction will be part of a series called “Infocalypse,” which features a total of twelve items, six of which will be physical, and the other six will be auctioned as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on February 27, 2023.

The Infocalypse collection has been created in commemoration of the 30th anniversary of Snow Crash and includes NFT images of Dioxin Posse, a graphic novel that preceded Snow Crash, the original cover art for the 1993 mass-market paperback edition of Snow Crash, a sword modeled after the one used by the protagonist in the story, and more. Sotheby’s expects the manuscript to fetch between $100,000 to $200,000 in the auction.

Neil Stephenson’s Snow Crash is a seminal work in the field of science fiction and has sold over one million copies in North America alone. The book’s metaverse concept, which describes a virtual reality space inhabited by people using avatars, has inspired many innovators in various sectors of the global economy, including the gaming and entertainment industries.

Blockchain-based metaverses have gained significant traction in recent years, with NFTs playing a vital role in creating and trading virtual assets in these virtual worlds. The digital collectibles market is expected to reach the $1 trillion mark by 2032, driven in part by the rise of NFTs.

Sotheby’s auction of the Snow Crash manuscript represents a significant event for both fans of the book and those interested in the development of the metaverse concept. The manuscript’s sale is expected to attract significant attention from collectors, investors, and institutions seeking to own a piece of literary history that helped shape the future of virtual reality.