Amazon Publishing has secured licenses from Warner Bros. Television Group’s Alloy Entertainment division for its New York Times best-selling book series Gossip Girl, by Cecily von Ziegesar; Pretty Little Liars, by Sara Shepard; and Vampire Diaries, by L.J. Smith; and plans to announce more licenses soon.
Through these licenses, Kindle Worlds will allow any writer to publish authorized stories inspired by these popular Worlds and make them available for readers to purchase in the Kindle Store.
Suw Charman-Anderson in Forbes, in the best piece I’ve read thus far on the launch of fan fiction platform Kindle Worlds, Amazon’s latest power play, or, per the author’s point, such an obvious strategy that it hurts.
The question that the publishing industry has to ask itself, though, is why did they not think of this themselves? Why have publishers not engaged more fully with fanfic writers to provide them with an arena to legally produce works based on someone else’s characters? It’s not like fanfiction is new — its modern incarnation started in the 1960s with Star Trek fiction.
In case you were wondering, your library already collects fan fiction (see 50 Shades of Grey).