Screen rights for Bourne's debut adult novel snapped up

Screen rights for Bourne's debut adult novel snapped up

The screen rights to Holly Bourne’s debut adult novel, How Do You Like Me Now?, have been optioned by the production company behind “Nowhere Boy”.

London-based Ecosse Films optioned the rights from Hayley Steed and and Madeleine Milburn at Madeleine Milburn Ltd.

How Do You Like Me Now? Is billed as a “modern-day Briget Jones and Hot Milk” crossed with “Fleabag” and is due to be published in June 2018. It was snapped up by Hodder and Stoughton in a pre-empt earlier this year.

It follows Tori Bailey, a bestselling author who has inspired women around the world with her self-help memoir. But Tori has been living a lie. Her long-term boyfriend won't even talk about marriage while everyone around her is getting engaged and having babies. When her best friend Dee falls in love, Tori realises she is in danger of being left behind.

Development producer at Ecosse, Natalie Lindwall, said she experienced a “visceral response” to Bourne’s novel.

She said: “I feel like Tori is a character that needs to be on the screen rather than should be. How Do You Like Me Now? hits upon that beautiful bullseye of saying something about modern relationships that is fresh new territory.”

She added: “Tori’s emotional journey will speak loudly to women and men of all ages. Holly’s writing makes Tori stand apart as a character, the truth of her making an audience laugh and cry at its rawness.”

Author Bourne said that Ecosse “totally understood the themes of the book, the humour and everything it’s trying to achieve”.

She said: “This sort of thing is a dream come true for any author and I'm still pinching myself. I'm also looking forward to Tori's story reaching a wider audience and hopefully helping more women to feel better about their thirties."

Bourne is the bestselling author of multiple YA bestsellers including Am I Normal Yet (Usborne). A former journalist, Holly has won numerous prizes for her YA fiction and is a judge for the BBC Young Writers Award 2017.

Milburn said that Ecosse “truly understand the message Holly is delivering through her candid writing”.

She added: “I can’t wait to see it come to life on screen and captivate fans in the same way “Fleabag” did.”