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Beautiful Bad by Annie Ward: the story so far

Sep 11, 2018

MADELEINE MILBURN Literary, TV & Film Agency

The agency often posts stories about book deals, publication days and bestselling achievements. But what happens between the contract being inked, and the book landing on the shelves?

You may think that everything goes a little quiet, but this is far from the truth. Let’s use Annie Ward’s Beautiful Bad as an example. Take yourself back to October 2017, in the weeks before Frankfurt Book Fair. As the Autumn leaves fall, Annie’s upmarket psychological mystery has just been bought by Park Row Books in the US after a seven-way auction, and Quercus in the UK in a six-figure deal. As soon as the deals are announced the news post goes up.

But that is only the beginning.

Our Rights Department then launches into action, pitching the book to editors from around the world, both at Frankfurt Book Fair and beyond. Soon negotiations are being finalised and the book has been sold into territories around the world – fourteen including the UK, US and Canada – with more lining up.

Then what? With a book as exciting as this one, the hype continues to grow in the build up to publication (March 2019). Nowhere is this more perfectly illustrated than in the Publishers Weekly article that appeared a few days ago celebrating all things Annie and Beautiful Bad. It’s a fantastic piece exploring Annie’s journey towards writing the book, and the story behind the deals. Not only that, it mentions US editor Erika Imranyi’s plans for PR: “We’re coming out with guns blazing,” Imranyi says. “We’ve got aggressive marketing plans with store visits and festivals. It’s our big book for 2019.”

As Publishers Weekly goes on to say:

‘A movie sale is inevitable, and the book has sold in 11 foreign territories so far: Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Israel, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, and Slovakia. Ward is over the moon. “I’m ready to do whatever to promote this book,” she says. “If they want me to ride a pony, I’ll be riding a pony!”’

So there you have it. The real work begins after the contracts have been signed, with the team here at the MM Agency working hard to secure the foreign rights deals and any potential film & TV options, the publishers focusing on marketing, and Annie Ward gearing up to appear at book festivals. In between riding lessons, of course.

The original online version of this article appeared at

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