Friday, June 24, 2011

Harry Potter and the Future of Publishing

There have been rumblings about JK Rowling’s new online venture, Pottermore. This week those questions were answered. While Harry Potter fans will understandably be delighted by the new collaborative web site thingymajiggum, it’s the eBook side of things that’s of interest to those of us with a toe (nail) in publishing.

The Harry Potter series is one of the most lucrative franchises in the history of publishing. And JK Rowling holds the electronic rights…

Can you say million dollar diamond mine.

The publishing world has been thrown into a lot of turmoil with the rise of eBooks. Age-old ways of doing things are being ripped up. Authors are going it alone and grabbing a bigger slice of their own pie. The interesting question was always going to be how one of the most successful authors ever would bring their much-loved series to the digital market.

Well the answer is out and I suspect various high-level Amazon and B & N execs were choking on their coffee this morning. The Harry Potter books will come out online, but exclusively from the Pottermore site.


That’s really taking control of your work. Rowling didn’t cut out her publishers entirely, they’re still playing a role, but it sounds like she thinks she’s big enough to manage just fine without the services of the biggest bookseller in the world.

Interesting times indeed…

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