In April 2013, Little Brown, an American publishing company, released The Cuckoo’s Calling, a début novel by an obscure author called Robert Galbraith, who the publisher described as “a former plainclothes Royal Military Police investigator who had left in 2003 to work in the civilian security industry”.
The novel, a crime detective story, sold 1500 copies in hardback. Some even say that this number is the number of copies that were printed for the first run, while the sales total was closer to a meagre 500. Nothing surprising, as more than 90% of the books that are published worldwide, hardly sell more than couple of hundred copies.
But unlike others, something remarkable happened with Galbraith’s novel. Four months after it was first published, the sale skyrocketed by 4000 percent. This happened when it was revealed that Robert Galbraith was a pseudonym used by J.K. Rowling, author of Harry Potter series and United Kingdom’s best-selling living author. (source: Wikipedia)
Calling her a successful author would be a huge understatement. Her books have sold more than 400 million copies.