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  • Writer's pictureThe Publishing Post

Penguin Meets Wattpad: The Perfect Fictional Coupling

By Iqbal Hussain


Two giants of the storytelling world are coming together in the most anticipated dynamic duo since Batman and Robin. On one side, we have Penguin Random House, the biggest name in the publishing industry. With a reputation as one of the top five publishers in the UK, it is famous in most worldwide demographics and has almost 100 years in one form or another of publishing the biggest names in the industry.


On the other side, we have Wattpad, which was founded in 2006 to connect writers to readers on a larger, more accessible scale. It is an open channel where anyone can release original written fiction. Wattpad boasts ninety-million monthly users and 665 million story uploads. After the longstanding popularity of Wattpad fiction, it’s not surprising that Penguin has signed a deal with Wattpad.


Why are millennials and Gen Z drawn to this site, you may ask? Put simply, it is an interactive platform where readers can pick out and dissect chapters or lines of its writers, thereby allowing users to help mould stories and give feedback in a way that is unparalleled on other similar platforms. With twenty-three-billion minutes of writing and reading being invested each month into the platform, it is no wonder this is a hot commodity that everyone is vying to utilise.


Now Penguin Random House has an agreement to sell and distribute the entire Wattpad WEBTOON book group (WWBG) frontlist and backlist across all sales channels worldwide this autumn. WWBG publishes more than forty new titles every year from Wattpad books, W by Wattpad Books, Frayed Pages X Wattpad books and graphical novels from WEBTOON unscrolled. Some hits include True Beauty by Yaongyi, The Falling by Anna Todd, Night Shift by Annie Crown, Float by Kate Marchant, and Everything Is Fine by Mike Birchall.


The excitement is building with the users of WWBG as they are curious to see how this pairing will gel. Vying on optimism, we have lesser-known writers being given the opportunity to be picked by Penguin Random House, having their backing and name to meet a market that has been closed off to them until now. The pessimist will bring to your attention that Penguin is slowly creating a monopoly – not only on books, but also on what authors are being filtered en masse to the readers. This is just another way they are taking over. Whatever the thoughts, the publishing industry has all its eyes on this collaboration.




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