When Colleen Houck had trouble getting an agent for her young adult novel Tiger's Curse, she decided to self-publish it. Now it's a bestseller that's being made into a film.
According to Deadline New York, Paramount Pictures has acquired the film rights to the book, which was published by Splinter earlier this year after a self-published e-book version hit the top of Kindle download lists. Mary Parent, producer of the films Role Models and You, Me & Dupree, will produce. Earlier this year, Houck discussed her decision to self-publish in an interview with Publisher's Weekly:
I really did everything kind of backwards! After finishing the first two novels, I sent query letters to agents for a while, but didn't get any hits. So I thought, ‘OK, writing will be just a hobby for me.' But as people read my novels and began talking to others about them, it seemed that more and more people wanted to read them. So my husband and I decided to self-publish Tiger's Curse and Tiger's Quest as e-books, and we put them up on Kindle. A couple of months went by, and in January 2010, Tiger's Curse soared to the top 20 list of Kindle bestsellers, and I went from selling 300 books a month to 300 books an hour.
Tiger's Curse tells the story of a teenage girl who cares for a white tiger, only to find out he is actually a cursed Indian prince. A review of the book in the LA Times called it "an alluring premise that opens with a bang and occasionally bogs down with extraneous detail." Few reviewers seemed to critique Houck's appropriation of Hindu mythology, though one reader review at Barnesandnoble.com does complain that "the character of Phet was horrendously offensive, he is a bubbly shaman with the typically offensive Indian accent, which no other Indian characters seem to have." Its content aside, Tiger's Curse is one of several self-published books to hit bestseller lists in recent years — the novels of Amanda Hocking are another well-known example. With a movie of Tiger's Curse in the works, self-publishing is looking like an increasingly profitable venture.
Paramount Pictures Acquires Bestselling Book ‘Tiger's Curse' For Mary Parent [Deadline New York]