The Los Angeles Times has an interesting piece on the shrewd way that Hyperion has handled publication and cross-promotion of their CASTLE tie-in novels. They said, in part:
Publisher Hyperion, which had success with similar projects connected to sister company ABC’s soaps “One Life to Live” and ” All My Children,” decided to bypass a traditional TV tie-in and instead go with a Richard Castle-authored book after seeing the greenlit pilot. Castle’s name alone appears on the books, without any nod to a real-life scribe. “The main character’s a writer! How perfect is that?” says Gretchen Young, an executive editor at Hyperion and its editorial director for ABC Synergy.
[…] The show plays with fiction and reality: On it, Castle has talked about his upcoming publication commitments with his agent (yes, Hyperion will be publishing two more) and played poker with real-life mystery writers James Patterson and Stephen J. Cannell, who died in late September.
In an upcoming episode, “Heat Wave” — a novel written by a fictional television character — has been optioned by Hollywood. “It gets very meta in the show,” Marlowe admits, laughing.
And in person. As part of Hyperion’s release last year of “Heat Wave,” Fillion appeared as Castle at two Southern California bookstores.
It’s not a new idea. The MURDER SHE WROTE books are written by Jessica Fletcher & Donald Bain, and she was a mystery novelist, too. But the producers didn’t integrate the tie-ins into the TV series as cleverly as the CASTLE folks have (or at all, if memory serves). But now that HEAT WAVE has become a bestseller, you can expect more TV tie-ins to follow their example…