Top 5 Wednesday: Self-Published Books


Hello lovelies – it’s Wednesday so that means it’s time for another Top 5 Wednesday!

Top 5 Wednesday’s is a group on Goodreads that was created by Lainey from the booktube channel, GingerReadsLainey. This group is open to any Booktuber or blogger that would like to get involved. Basically, there’s a list of topics every Wednesday and you find five things that fit well for the topic.

You can find the group here: Top 5 Wednesday

This week the topic is: Self-Published Books

The original topic title was favourite self-published books but my immediate thought was that I hadn’t read any. It wasn’t until I looked into it properly that I realised I had read a couple that originally started as self-published, and went on to become popular novels and movies. I’ve added the ones that I have read, and also some other popular ones that I’d like to get to at some point. So starting with the ones I have read…

Fifty Shades Of GreyFifty Shades of Grey

Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

  This novel originally began as Twilight fanfiction that was published under the pseudonym “snowqueens icedragon”. When it became increasingly more popular, James deleted any references to Twilight and began posting the new chapters on her website, free of charge. Later it was picked up by a publishing company in Australia, and went on to become a trilogy with a movie attached. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but I think the way it originated is pretty impressive.

Legally Blonde

Legally Blonde by Amanda Brown

This novel was initially a collection of letters as a ‘anthropological study of the law school species’, the author tried to find an agency that would take on her essays, at the time called One Elle. Then Brown was advised to re-work her essays into a novel. This led to a bidding war over the manuscript, but strangely just for a film adaptation. The author self-published the book through a service called AuthorHouse. Once the film was released and the publishing companies realised how popular it was, they all rushed to publish it. Later, a sequel to the movie and a broadway show were released!


Eragon by Christopher Paolini

At just Fifteen years old, Paolini began writing his novel Eragon. Once his family realised how good his work was, they decided to help him self-publish his works. So much so that they designed promotional items, like pamphlets etc and travelled all across the western half of America to try and sell it. Eventually the stepson of a famous author came across the book and fell in love with it. He then passed it on to his father, Carl Hiassen, who in turn passed the book onto Alfred A. Knopf. Eragon was later published, spurring on three more novels and a film adaptation.

still alice

Still Alice by Lisa Genova

For a year, Lisa Genova tried to publish her novel through traditional means, finding an agent etc. But after her novel Still Alice was continually rejected by every agent she approached, Genova decided to self-publish her work using iUniverse. Ten months later, her book had generated enough attention to attract the a literary agent, who later sold it at auction for six figures. Still Alice was on the New York Times best seller list more than 59 weeks. The book was later adapted into a play, and a movie starring Julianne Moore, who won an Oscar for her performance as Alice.

The Martian

The Martian by Andy Weir

The film adaptation of Andy Weir’s debut novel, The Martian, had recently been released in the cinema. The novel was originally self-published as a free serial on his website, in 2011. After several readers requested that he make the book available on Kindle, Weir self-published it for just 99 cents. The novel made it to the Kindle bestsellers list and caught the interest of a literary agent, who sold the rights to Crown Publishing Group. 20th Century Fox went on to acquire the film rights shortly after, releasing a movie starring Matt Damon.

I hope you enjoyed my take on this weeks topic, I tried my best not to steer too far away from the original topic of favourite self-published books. Let me know what your favourite self-published book is and hopefully I’ll be able to rectify my lack of them. Also, I’d be interested to know if you’ve found any up and coming works releasing online that you think will transfer to mainstream. Check back next week for another Top 5 Wednesday, and the topic will be: Favourite Buzz Words.


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