J.K. Rowling to donate ‘Cuckoo’s Calling’ royalties to charity, settles out of court with law firm

In true Rowling fashion, Jo will be donating all royalties from The Cuckoo’s Calling over the next three years to The Soldier’s Charity.

The Associated Press reports that J.K. Rowling will be donating all her royalties from the book from the next three years to The Soldier’s Charity, which helps former military personnel and their families. Rowling has also accepted a ‘substantial donation’ to the charity from Russells Solicitors, the law firm whose partner leaked the author’s true identity, and will reimburse Rowling’s legal costs.

Rowling was outed as the book’s true author by Judith Callegari, a Surrey mother of two who was told the confidential information by Chris Gossage, a partner at Russells Solicitors, a firm that worked with Rowling, and the husband of Callegari’s best friend. Callegari told a Sunday Times columnist over a Twitter conversation that Rowling was the true author, which led to the Times breaking the story on July 14. Confused? Refer to our Prezi that explains the events that led up to the leak.

According to the AP, Rowling sued the lawyer and Callegari. Her attorney, Jenny Afia, told Britain’s High Court on Wednesday that Rowling had been left “angry and distressed that her confidences had been betrayed.”

Via the AP: “As a reflection of their regret for breach of the claimant’s confidence, including frustrating the claimant’s ability to continue to write anonymously under the name Robert Galbraith, the defendants are here today to apologize publicly to the claimant,” Afia said.

Rowling chose to donate to The Soldiers’ Charity because she “drew on conversations with serving soldiers and veterans” to create the character of Cormoran Strike, the hero of the novel who is a veteran who lost a leg in Afghanistan.

“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,” Rowling said in a statement.

Rowling said she had “always intended” to give the charity a donation from Robert’s royalties but “had not anticipated him making the bestseller list a mere three months after publication.” She admitted that she actually never expected that he would ever be there.

Visit our page dedicated to The Cuckoo’s Calling for all the latest news and updates and our complete coverage of the novel. Last week, we learned that the book was being suggested for a film adaptation (article via The Guardian).


Mystery Twitter account that outed Robert Galbraith’s true identity revealed

J.K. Rowling, above, is "very angry" over the leak.

J.K. Rowling, above, is “very angry” over the leak.

The identity of the person behind the mystery Twitter account that ultimately led to the outing of J.K. Rowling as the author of The Cuckoo’s Calling has been revealed.

The BBC reports that the anonymous tweeter was Judith Callegari, a suburban mother of two. Callegari was told that J.K. Rowling was the true author of the book by her best friend’s husband, Chris Gossage. Gossage is a partner at Russells Solicitors, a law firm specializing in the entertainment industry.

Understandably, J.K. Rowling said in a statement that she is very angry to hear about this breach of confidentiality.

“I have today discovered how the leak about Robert’s true identity occurred. A tiny number of people knew my pseudonym and it has not been pleasant to wonder for days how a woman whom I had never heard of prior to Sunday night could have found out something that many of my oldest friends did not know.

“To say that I am disappointed is an understatement. I had assumed that I could expect total confidentiality from Russells, a reputable professional firm, and I feel very angry that my trust turned out to be misplaced.”

Russells has also released a statement regarding the situation, saying that the reveal was made during a private conversation between Gossage and a trustworthy friend, Callegari. Russells immediately contacted Rowling’s agents when they learned of the leak.

“We, Russells Solicitors, apologise unreservedly for the disclosure caused by one of our partners, Chris Gossage, in revealing to his wife’s best friend, Judith Callegari, during a private conversation that the true identity of Robert Galbraith was in fact JK Rowling.

“Whilst accepting his own culpability, the disclosure was made in confidence to someone he trusted implicitly. On becoming aware of the circumstances, we immediately notified JK Rowling’s agent. We can confirm that this leak was not part of any marketing plan and that neither JK Rowling, her agent nor publishers were in any way involved.”

Through an anonymous Twitter account, Callegari revealed to a Sunday Times journalist that J.K. Rowling was the true author of The Cuckoo’s Calling. An editor for the newspaper then did some investigating, sent other Rowling manuscripts, including Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and The Casual Vacancy, along with The Cuckoo’s Calling, to a pair of linguistic computers. The computers verified that they were written by the same author, and, after notifying Rowling’s reps, they ran with the story on Saturday.

Since then, demand for The Cuckoo’s Calling has skyrocketed, becoming an instant bestseller. Bookstores and online retailers are completely sold out, and a second printing of 300,000 is on its way. Learn more about the leak and read all the latest news here, at our page dedicated to The Cuckoo’s Calling.

Thanks MuggleNet for the tip.