Growing Up with J.K. Rowling: The Next Chapter

The author of the beloved Harry Potter series is having a new novel published and will be marketed to the adult demographic. Do you think this next book will be a success? How can authors and brands keep up with their maturing audience? Written by Juliet Rocco

J.K. Rowling officially announced a few weeks ago that she did indeed have an adult novel in the works. While the book does not have an official release date yet, Potter fans are bracing themselves for the excitement once more details emerge.

Rowling released a statement through her newest publisher Little, Brown and Company:

“The freedom to explore new territory is a gift that Harry’s success has brought me, and with that new territory it seemed a logical progression to have a new publisher. I am delighted to have a second publishing home in Little, Brown, and a publishing team that will be a great partner in this new phase of my writing life.”

Remember the first time you read a Harry Potter book? I do. I was 7 years old when the first book came out, but didn’t pick one up until I was 10. After reading the Sorcerer’s Stone, I was hooked. I finished the first four books by the end of 5th grade and couldn’t wait for more.

Pottermania: By 2001, The movie series was released and Pottermania was in full force. The imagination and creativity of the series is really what captivated me as well as millions of other kids and adults alike. Seven books, eight movies, a social site, and a theme park later, and now Rowling is beginning a new writing journey.

Rowling’s latest book is set to capture us yet again by being made especially for the now grown-up demographic of the Potter series. While she has expressed in interviews of her “closure with Harry,” this new book could be the start of something incredibly refreshing. There have been rumors of a mystery/crime novel swirling for the past few weeks now.

Making the transition: Many other authors have gone from writing children’s and teen novels to adults and the success rate is evenly distributed. Some are able to do it, while others should have never left the children’s section unattended. Another big transition is into the world of e-books. The Harry Potter series will be available for download on an e-book near you sometime this year through the Pottermore website.

Demographic switch: It’s a very well thought out strategic move to go from writing for children/teens and move to a more mature audience. With Rowling’s strong composition skills and creativity, I believe this book will have more than enough potential to become another New York Time’s best-seller.

She’s managed to capture millions of imaginations all over the world and hold on to them into their growing adult years. She can effectively produce another hit novel if she plays into what made her Harry Potter series so successful: imagination and listening to her fans.

Takeaway: Authors and brands need to be aware of their maturing target market. This is when offering variety and being adaptable to change are most important. Books are a great example of variety and offering new perspectives. Having readers become loyal to a certain writing style or story gives a stable foundation to future projects. Focus on what made it so successful in the first place and capitalize on those points.

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