Mike Fleming

Fifty Shades Of Grey has made it open season for online erotic fan fiction. After Tara Sue Me (with a name like that, you’ve got to be a feisty writer) began posting what she calls The Submissive Trilogy and got more than 8.5 million views, New American Library closed a fat three-book deal before you could say “Bring out the gimp.” Now we’ll have to see if those studios that missed out on Fifty Shades Of Grey jump on this one. Here’s the news:

New York, NY, February 14, 2013—New American Library (NAL), an imprint of Penguin Group (USA), will publish Tara Sue Me’s fan fiction sensation, the Submissive Trilogy, it was announced today by NAL Publisher Kara Welsh. Claire Zion, Vice President and Editorial Director of NAL, acquired World print and e-book rights to the trilogy in a deal with Red Publishing (Australia). NAL will make the entire series available in the U.S. for the first time.

The Submissive, the first book in the trilogy, is now available in e-book format across all platforms. NAL will release the trade paperback edition on June 4, 2013. The simultaneous release of the e-book and trade paperback editions of the second two books, The Dominant and The Training, will follow on August 6 and October 1, respectively.

The series is already generating buzz around the world. Within days of the acquisition, Headline UK pre-empted UK and Australian rights in a major deal.

Tara Sue Me first posted The Submissive on fanfiction.net in early 2009. The novel quickly gained attention around the world for its erotic portrayal of a relationship between a wealthy CEO and a young librarian. The Submissive received 3 million views while posted on the site, according to the author. E L James even referred to herself as a fan of the author’s work, saying she “really enjoyed” the Submissive stories*.

The Submissive and its sequels, The Dominant and The Training, were acquired by Red Publishing in Australia in 2012. The Submissive was available in print in Australia and e-book worldwide. It became a print bestseller in Australia.

After writing a few traditional romance novels, Tara Sue Me began posting what became The Submissive Trilogy on both fanfiction.net and Twilighted.net, receiving a combined total of more than 8.5 million views.

The books have already received mainstream media coverage. Last summer, both The Wall Street Journal and The Guardian (UK) drew comparisons between The Submissive and Fifty Shades of Grey.

“Tara Sue Me writes the kind of erotic romance people want today, and she does it better than most anyone else we’ve seen. She’s been a sensation online for years, and it’s time for the mainstream audience to discover and enjoy her works,” Zion said.

“I’m excited to become part of the Penguin family and for my stories to have the opportunity to reach a wider audience,” said Tara Sue Me.

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