Ruth Jones is to become a novelist, having just signed a deal to write two books.
Trade magazine The Bookseller reports that the rights for the first two novels from the Welsh comedy actress were fought over by 10 publishers in an auction. Transworld won the bidding war, which also includes the rights to make audiobook versions.
Jones' first book will be called Never Greener. Scheduled for publication in 2018, it is described as "a witty and wise story of life's second chances and the dangers of taking them."
The Stella star says: "I love creating characters in scripts but now I get to go inside their heads! As I step into this new world of novel writing, I'm thrilled to be working with the team at Transworld and very grateful to [agent] Jonny Geller for his invaluable guidance. Let's just hope I don't mess it up!"
Publisher Bill Scott-Kerr comments: "I've been a long-time and ardent admirer of Ruth's writing. When Jonny submitted Never Greener, Ruth's talent which had been so evident on the small screen was writ large on the page - her humanity, her humour and her wisdom. I cannot wait to bring this novel to a wider reading public. They are in for a treat."
Senior commissioning editor Frankie Gray, talking about Never Greener, adds: "It's impossible not to fall for the diverse cast of characters, with all of their imperfections and everyday dilemmas, and to invest wholeheartedly in an idea as universal as it is affecting."
Talking about the widespread interest in the rights, agent Jonny Geller said: "Ruth's story resonated with so many publishers, not just because it reminded everyone of her brilliant flair for character and getting to the heart of an emotional story, but because she writes prose like a dream."