Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Best Selling Author Who’s Not an Author

Until yesterday, I’d never heard of this author. But she’s apparently being hailed as “a publishing phenomenon” and an author who’s “working her magic on the publishing world with her books selling faster than JK Rowling’s.”

And yet – I had to read three different articles to find out her full name. The Independent called her “BUSTY model Jordan” in one article and “glamour model Jordan” in another. Apparently her real name, well sort of real name, is Katie “Jordan” Price.

And she’s not even an author. She’s a …. brand.

Yep. This author who’s been on the bestseller list for weeks in the UK… who has three auto-biographical books out (Being Jordan, Jordan: A Whole New World, and Jordan: Pushed to the Limit) and also writes books for pre-teen girls and is writing a series of picture books for 4-8 year olds – hasn’t actually written any of them.
The publishers supply the ghost writers to do the donkey work. Jordan's job is to be the brand.
Another Independent article said:
Her first memoir, Being Jordan, sold 1m copies. Her teen novel, Crystal, sold more than all of last year's Booker nominees combined, and just this week Price was shortlisted as Best Kids Author at the British Book Awards…
Oh, she also “writes” novels set in the glamour/music/TV world.
Last year her "novel", Crystal, outsold the entire Booker shortlist by a factor of about 12 to one.
Glamour/Busty not-a-writer Jordan is raking in the money apparently.
The mum of three has clocked up more than two million sales worth €21m in just four years….she raked in €13m with her first two autobiographies and already has €3m from the latest chapter of her life…The 30-year-old has apparently made €4m from two novels…
Her editor says:
In many people’s hearts she occupies a position which used to be held by Princess Diana.
Apparently, all Jordan’ books are ghostwritten by Rebecca Farnsworth. Wonder what she’s making?

14 comments:

  1. Not nearly on the same level as what you're talking about, but I remember reading about how the woman who wrote the Cheetah Girls books (which later became a Disney phenomenon) has made almost nothing off those books.

    --Kim (kidlit_kim on Twitter)

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  2. And the author probably signed a contract agreeing to never discuss her contract. I do hope she's well paid.
    Lj

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  3. I sort of remember that about the Cheetah Girls books, Kim.

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  4. If she's not paid well, I hope she gets out of the contract and moves on. Clearly, she can write well -- the books are doing well.

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  5. Bad enough that authors make so little - then they have to be slaves and watch some celebrity rake in the dough? arrrggggh!

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  6. It does make you want to scream, I agree. This just seems like such a blatant example.

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  7. Nice blog, Helen!

    Becky

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  8. Ghostwriters usually agree up front to be paid in lieu of credit. I hope the ghost's remuneration has gone up along with the sales.

    As a ghostwriter myself, I'm not sure I'd agree to write for a "brand." I'm all about helping real people tell their stories and share their ideas -- even though they might not be great writers, that doesn't mean their stories shouldn't be told. And since they are their stories, not mine, they truly are the authors.

    And by the way, as an author (I write for myself too), I really enjoy your blog, Helen.

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  9. Hi Kim!

    You're right, ghostwriters do agree to the pay upfront. And I'm with you -- I hope her pay has gone up with the success the books have had!

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  10. Marvin! I don't believe I've ever heard you bleep before!

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  11. I don't know where you get all this inside information, but it's really something. I enjoyed reading your blog today.

    Morgan Mandel
    http://morganmandel.blogspot.com
    http://bloodredpencil.blogspot.com

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  12. Just when you think the news about writers can't get any worse (or weird) something else comes along! This is just bizarre!

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  13. That's just gross. I really really hate this.

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