Hugh Howey
Hugh Howey

Bestselling author of Wool and other books. Currently sailing around the world.

Happy and Glorious!

The title of this blog entry is a line from God Save the Queen, the UK national anthem. And that’s the tune I’m humming today: Happy and Glorious! I have awesome news, everyone. Spectacular news. Unbelievable news.

WOOL has been picked up by Random House in the UK!

Do you know how hard this has been to keep in? Two secrets like this at the same time. I’ve been bursting at the seams.

What’s crazy is how all of these events played out right on top of each other. As everyone must’ve heard over the weekend (at least twice), the WOOL film rights went to Ridley Scott and Steve Zaillian in partnership with 20th Century Fox. Amazing. And while that has a ton of celebrity and glitz, today’s announcement is more “real” and even more thrilling for me. There’s a good chance a film won’t materialize, and if it does, it would be so many years from now that many of you will have moved on to something else.

The book release in the UK with Random House, however, is imminent.

WOOL was picked up by Century, a kick-butt division of Random House, which . . . wait for it . . . also did 50 Shades of Grey. After a 5-way auction that took place during the London Book Fair, Century and Random House came through with the most compelling offer. They addressed every single concern I had with the domestic offers. They appreciate how this was published, how important your involvement has been, and they want to maintain and even emulate those features. Their enthusiasm for this project is through the roof, and it sounds like the push behind WOOL is going to be enormous.

You should have seen the awesome lengths their team went through. They created a WOOL website for me to log into to read through their marketing ideas (they love how I interact with fans and want to augment this even more); it had testimonials from staff who read and loved the book (complete with pics of people in wool caps), and even a video message from Jack Fogg, the brilliant (and hilarious) editor behind the deal, who I’ll be working with to localise and polish the manuscript (that means replacing a lot of z’s with s’s and sprinkling unnecessary u’s liberally throughout).

Do you know what this means? Oh, man, so much. I’m absolutely giddy over here thinking about this. First of all, it means books will be available to fans in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand. I’ve shipped dozens of books to these regions, and it ain’t cheap. Soon, readers will be able to go to the store and pick up a copy, tell their friends, spread the good news. It means WOOL will be read by more people in places where it’s less accessible right now!

Even better, this means I’ll get the best of both worlds. I now have a native-language (mostly) publisher while remaining indie here at home. With feet firmly planted on both sides of the fence, I’ll get a taste of the traditional route without signing over my life. I can still write what I want over here. I won’t lose the sales that allow me to write full-time. And foreign book contracts, let me tell you, are much more progressive and author-friendly than domestic ones. This is like eating Marie Antoinette’s cake and having it, too!

The rough plan right now is a hardback in January. For those of you here in the States that may want a copy (right, Mom?) it does look like I’ll be able to smuggle some across the border, so that will be an option. More on that as we move forward. It also means advance copies in the hands of major review outlets in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand. It means bookstores and supermarkets. Hopefully, it means book-signing tours! (They want to send me to Australia, where I already have quite a few readers. Can you imagine?!)

Finally, there’s the cachet of being with a major publisher. This may get me on discussion panels at SF conferences (most of them haven’t caught the indie bug quite yet). It’ll mean having a publicist working to improve my image (ha. Good luck!). Then there’s the craft side of things, where I’ll be able to improve my writing by working with the best editors in the biz. So many new things added to my quiver without giving up a single bit of the freedom I’ve come to know and love!

This couldn’t be any better for all of the parties involved. Century and their team are thrilled. I’m thrilled. Readers overseas are going to be thrilled. I hope you all are thrilled. Happy and Glorious, indeed!

34 replies to “Happy and Glorious!”

Go forth and conquer, my friend. We’re all pulling for you every inch of the way, and will do anything we can to lend help and support. But you know that. And we know that you know that. And that’s why we’ve all been wrapped up in this love-fest all along. :-)

All of this news is so way cool! I can see why you have been ready to explode. I am very happy for all of your current successes and look forward to your future ones.

[…] Check it out: “WOOL was picked up by Century, a kick-butt division of Random House, which . . . wait for it . . . also did 50 Shades of Grey. After a 5-way auction that took place during the London Book Fair, Century and Random House came through with the most compelling offer. They addressed every single concern I had with the domestic offers. They appreciate how this was published, how important your involvement has been, and they want to maintain and even emulate those features.” […]

You deserve it, Hugh. You’ve put in the work. And you’re that good.

So congratulations. As if there were any question about it before, it’s official now: you are an Author! With no asterisks allowed.

(I must admit to feeling slightly disappointed that you won’t need my amateur editing skills anymore, but I know it’s for the greater good. And you need all the help you can get.) :-)

– David

That’s incredible news, Hugh. Congratulations. And to think, we were fans way back when you just had a couple of Wool books out and nobody knew who you were…you know, last month.

As long as you keep writing, we won’t be moving on any time soon. So much more Hugh Howey goodness waiting to be put to keyboard.

I will still buy them through you (Which reminds me I have quite a fair few things to buy…) if your still offering but yay!!! Now I will be able to tell people that they can go into a bookstore and get them!

Congratulations Hugh!

I hope WOOL hardback in the UK will also mean better chances for a WOOL TV series produced there.
I love series from the UK…

Just wait until they start giving out the “Howey” award for breakout Indie publisher of the year.

You may assume we are indeed thrilled for you! What a great opportunity! You’ve earned it, and we sure enjoy sharing your fun. If you remain an indie author here at home, you really will have lots of freedom and still be able to write at your own pace. While visiting Australia even! Post many photos, btw.

Image? Well. You have Amber, Bella, a supportive and talented family, a house in Jupiter, Silo t-shirts, and The One Thousand. You can write a novel while piloting really big boats. Your fans LIKE you. I don’t think you can have a better image :)

Congrats, Hugh! Such wonderful news. You are an inspiration to indies everywhere. :)

Gefeliciteerd, Hugh!
From your one and only fan in the Netherlands (but not for long!)
Marjolein

I remember you back with WOOL 1, and I remember thinking this was the best story I had read in a long time. Look at you now, you gettin papers! Congrats Hugh! You will be huge! I see a Hugo in your future.

So, what’s the latest news with Mr R. Scott? Unlikely… or possibility of making the big screen? Although I must say, lately it seems that the miniseries do books much more justice than an income drawing 2 hour movies does.

The next step is writing a screenplay, which I hope they don’t expect me to know how to do. I’d say we’re about three years from announcing that nothing will be made. If I had to guess. ;)

The famous Hollywood companies are unable to dictate just whatthe movie-going public really want or can get as they have during the past. Whenever you add to that distribution world wide web, news reports, sites, from chat to complete videos. It’s actually a totally new environment. Some of it good, some not.

I’m truly enjoying the design and layout of your blog.
It’s
a very easy on the eyes which makes it much more enjoyable for me to come
here and visit more often. Did you hire out a designer to create your theme?

Fantastic work!

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