Fan Fiction Author Anna Todd Lands Unique Book Deal

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Anna Todd’s presence on Wattpad remains strong thanks to a clause in her publishing contract. Check out the news below!

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Anna Todd’s latest One Direction-inspired fan fiction novel, Before, hit shelves Dec. 8, but parts of it already had been read more than 6 million times online. The sneak peek was authorized thanks to a clause in her mid-six-figure Gallery Books deal that allows her to maintain much of her work on Wattpad, a self-publishing site where her initial three-book After series has attracted more than 800 million reads.

Todd rose to fame through the online publishing site Wattpad, which allowed her to self-publish her story — a romantic tale between a Harry Styles-inspired bad boy and a sweet college girl — one chapter at a time online, and interact with Wattpad’s 40 million users who left comments to help her shape the next chapters. After her body of work hit more than 800 million reads in summer 2014, Simon & Schuster’s Gallery Books won a bidding war for the publishing rights in a mid-six-figure deal.

“There are whole relationships in the comments,” says Ashleigh Gardner, head of content at Wattpad, which represents Todd. “We were looking for a company that would make something additive for fans rather than taking something away.”

It turns out Todd and Wattpad (which represented her in the deal) had made a unique demand in her contract that allows her to keep all of After on the site, as opposed to taking it down like other self-published authors — including Fifty Shades of Grey writer EL James and The Martian‘s Andy Weir — did when they got book deals.

Gallery Books senior editor at Adam Wilson, who works with Todd, says about the deal: “It was definitely experimental for us. We didn’t know what would happen at the beginning, but fortunately it bore fruit.

With the three-part After series, which has 5 million copies in print worldwide, behind her, Todd next wrote Before, which, much like James’ recent book Grey, tells the same story from the male protagonist’s viewpoint. She’s now working on two more books, Nothing More and Nothing Less,spinoffs based on one of the characters from the original After series. Several scenes from Beforeare already on Wattpad (it’s received more than 6 million reads) because Todd is allowed to put about 30 percent of the final book onto the site; she’ll do the same for Nothing More and Nothing Less.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter