PIPPA Middleton has signed a six-figure publishing deal to write a guide to party planning, which will be released in time for Christmas next year.
The younger sister of the Duchess of Cambridge has been the subject of a fierce bidding war by some of Britain’s largest publishers for her first book. It is understood that publisher Michael Joseph, an imprint of Penguin books, last week signed her up to a publishing deal worth £400,000.
According to industry sources, the negotiating process involved delicate discussions about the book’s timing.
Ms Middleton will wait for the launch of her first book until after the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations next summer so that she is not seen to be cashing in on her royal connections.
She is keen for the book to be released next year but is determined that she is not seen to be making money from her closeness to the royal family. Therefore the book is likely to be launched late next autumn, after the summer celebrations around the Queen’s Jubilee but in time for the Christmas market.
“She wanted to publish it next year, but it will be timed to come out after the Jubilee,” said one book industry insider.
The book will be a guide to being the perfect party hostess. It will include recipes, anecdotes and details of how to throw a range of different types of event.
The fact that Ms Middleton’s agent David Godwin, whose DGA company also represents Vikram Seth and William Dalrymple, has secured such a high six-figure advance shows that the industry is expecting high sales.
“It is a massive amount of money, particularly in the current environment,” said one agent.
According to its website, Michael Joseph publishes “highly commercial, popular fiction and non-fiction, principally interested in publishing Top Ten bestsellers”. Other authors on its roster include Jamie Oliver, Jeremy Clarkson and Ant and Dec.
Publishers who were also keen on the book are thought to include Harper Collins and Cornerstone, a branch of Random House.
Ms Middleton has toured around different publishing houses pitching the book over the last few months. Book executives said that she went down a storm.
Publishers believe that her experience as a professional party-planner at Table Talk, a London-based company, and her regular contributions to The Party Times, the online newsletter of her parent’s Party Pieces firm, make her perfectly positioned to write an authoritative book.
A spokesman for Michael Joseph was unavailable for comment.