J. K. Rowling announced yesterday that the royalties from her novel "The Cuckoo's Calling" - written under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith - will be donated to The Soldiers' Charity for a period of three years. Rowling also accepted a "substantial" donation to the same charity in lieu of damages from the law firm that revealed her identity without her approval.
Rowling said in a public statement, "This donation is being made to The Soldiers' Charity partly as a thank you to the Army people who helped me with research, but also because writing a hero who is a veteran has given me an even greater appreciation and understanding of exactly how much this charity does for ex-servicemen and their families, and how much that support is needed."
"I always intended to give The Soldiers' Charity a donation out of Robert's royalties but I had not anticipated him making the bestseller list a mere three months after publication - indeed, I had not counted on him ever being there! "
"The Cuckoo's Calling" is a whodunit with a war-veteran-turned-private-investigator as its protagonist. It received positive reviews upon its release and garnered modest sales. Once Rowling was revealed as the true author, however, sales shot through the roof, expiring the first printing overnight and catapulting "The Cuckoo's Calling" to number one on Amazon's bestseller lists. (For Rowling collectors out there, the first printing is estimated at 1500 copies).
Rowling added in her statement: "I was yearning to go back to the beginning of a writing career in this new genre, to work without hype or expectation and to receive totally unvarnished feedback. It was a fantastic experience and I only wish it could have gone on a little longer."