If I were to publish a book, is there any chance for it to become very popular? let's assume is a good book, would it go unnoticed for being an author's first book or does it entirely depend on the book?

  • Self-publish or publishing contract? Jun 26, 2014 at 0:22
  • Hopefully publishing contract Jun 26, 2014 at 0:22
  • 1
    I'd say you may be sure if you got yourself a big name with 10th or so book, your first will become popular too :)
    – SF.
    Jun 27, 2014 at 11:01
  • Sometimes an author will self-publish a small run and later get picked up by a major publisher. If it's good, it can succeed - especially today with the Internet to spread the news for free.
    – Joe
    Jul 7, 2014 at 21:57

3 Answers 3


J.K. Rowling's debut novel was Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. It was pretty successful.


For some writers, ONLY their first book was popular. (Some only write one book. Success can be as crippling as failure.) Here's a list:


Although that list isn't counting plays and short stories, which is certainly unfair, I find it telling how many famous writers only wrote one novel.


of course debuts can do well if they're good. Some of it will also depend on marketing and genre, but there's nothing stopping a first novel from being a smash.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.