Novelist James Patterson is so prolific, his annual output rivals that of many small publishing houses. Last year, with help from his stable of co-authors, he published 16 novels and sold around 20 million copies of his books.
Now Patterson is seeking to extend his brand further, by creating his own publishing imprint, Jimmy Patterson.
The imprint, which will be part of Little, Brown & Co., will release eight to 12 children’s books a year, with a focus on middle grade and young adult fiction.
Patterson will oversee it all, choosing manuscripts and shaping the marketing plan for each title. He will publish four to six of his own children’s books a year under the new imprint and will acquire books by other writers.
“We’re not going to buy a lot of books, but if we buy them, we’re going to publish them with gusto,” said Patterson, who announced the initiative during BookExpo America, the publishing industry’s annual trade convention.
A handful of other writers have moved into publishing roles and created their own imprints and book packaging businesses. Author Lizzie Skurnick started a young adult imprint, Lizzie Skurnick Books, which publishes new editions of classic young adult novels dating from the 1930s to the 1980s. Novelists Lauren Oliver and James Frey both created their own book packaging companies, allowing them to acquire and commission works by other writers and sell them to publishers.