Samantha Shannon may not be a household name, but her UK publisher thinks she will be sometime in August when her first novel, the Bone Season, comes out. It's the first in a seven-book series set in 2059 London, and Shannon scored a six-figure advance for the first three, reports Jeff Bercovici at Forbes. How did an unknown 21-year-old manage that? It helps that she's the (now former) intern of big-time literary agent David Godwin, who got a first look and was impressed. It also helps that her fiction strategy hits all the high points that the publishing industry looks for these days—the big one being that it has all the makings of a bankable franchise.
The series is about "clairvoyants in a dystopian future struggling against a totalitarian government and its supernatural overlords," writes Bercovici. The agent at Bloombury Publishing who bought it calls it "Beauty and the Beast, written with the imagination of the Bronte sisters." Meanwhile, a UK movie studio has already bought the rights—and this before the book even releases. “It’s a lot of pressure," says Shannon. "There’s a lot of expectations.” Click for the full story, which offers a primer on the publishing industry. (Read more Samantha Shannon stories.)