October 8, 2012

16 year-old lands a publishing deal for One Direction fan fiction


In the same week that Lena Dunham scored a million dollar book deal, a British teenager has secured a contract with Penguin for her One Direction fan fiction.

By no means would I equate Dunham’s upcoming memoir/advice book/manifesto (?) with the fevered dreams of a teenage girl about a boy band, but both deals are clearly aimed at the lucrative young female age group.

Martha de Lacey writes in the Daily Mail that Penguin imprint Razorbill has offered a book deal to 16 year-old Emily Baker after she wrote a piece of One Direction fan fiction on Movellas, an online youth writing forum. Baker had already attracted a significant fan base on the site for her boy band stories.

All this, de Lacey adds, suggests that posting your writing online in the manner of E.L. James and Fifty Shades of Grey is a good a way as any to get a book published.

Says Baker,

“‘The story is a typical girl-meets-boy love story, except it’s girl-meets-band.

‘It’s about a girl who lives in Scotland and comes down to London to visit her best friend.

‘When she gets there she bumps into a boy band and hangs out with them, and eventually she finds out two of them – Shaq and Reily – have fallen for her.”

I’m not sure which members Shaq and Reily are meant to be. I’m more of a Harry fan myself, he is clearly the sensitive member of the group.

Penguin’s very honest official statement said,

“Penguin had been looking to commission a writer to pen a romantic YA fictional novel that tapped into the current obsession with boy bands. Emily proved to be just the right kind of new talent to write such a novel with powerful emotion and authority.”

Ariel Bogle is a former publicist at Melville House.