We’re going to be taking turns updating this blog to share a behind the scenes look at Carina Press. Our love books and of all things digital has led us to launch this new initiative and we couldn’t be more excited at the possibilities. Who is this “we” that I keep referencing?
We are members of Harlequin’s Digital Team. With a unique blend of editorial and marketing expertise, together we’ve developed a powerful website and store, established the preeminent eBook publishing program that includes original content and utilized social media to build better relationships with readers.
Launching a digital publishing house that takes advantage of our unique skills is our logical next step. There are hundreds of fantastic stories out there that for one reason or another don’t yet have a home. Our intent is to give them one and provide the authors behind them with opportunities to play an active role in this exciting and ever-changing digital space.
I’ll introduce you to more people as we move forward (and we are going to have some exciting people announcements), but I’ll start with some of the key players who have been involved in this exciting project.
First and foremost, I’m delighted to announce the hiring of Angela James as Executive Editor of Carina Press. Angela brings a wealth of experience and passion for digital publishing and great stories.
Angela James, Executive Editor. Angela has been an avid reader for as far back as she can remember, and started reading her first romances in fourth grade—when she’d sneak a Harlequin category romance or two from the brown paper bag where her mom kept her stash. She’s been reading romances of all genres since then, and though she’s since moved her reading to digital copies, she’s still a voracious reader of romance, science fiction, fantasy, mysteries, fiction and cookbooks. Angela is the newest member of the team, but comes to Harlequin and Carina Press with seven years of experience in the digital arena, after working for various digital publishers.
Malle Vallik, Director Digital Content & Social Media: Malle’s background and expertise is in combining innovative editorial with digital and was named one of the top 50 Women in Publishing by Book Business Magazine. Malle loves reading commercial fiction, everything from romance to fantasy to thrillers. She’s incredibly excited by the range of editorial Carina Press will publish. There are no rules. Malle proudly watches more television than most people will admit but will happily give up some tv watching for submission reading.You can follow her on twitter.com/mallevallik.
Brent Lewis, Vice President Digital & Internet: With an extensive publishing background, Brent was recently named one of the top 40 online marketers in Canada. He has also managed Harlequin’s international digital businesses. He’s passionate about hockey and Arsenal Football team. He admits to having read more than one romance novel.
Eleanor Elliott, Director Digital Commerce: Eleanor has been working in the digital space for 14 years, the last 10 of which have been at Harlequin, and currently leads the charge on eHarlequin.com. An avid reader since childhood, Eleanor loves getting lost in a great story and always has multiple books on the go. Her favorites genres include sci-fi, fantasy, and historical romance. She is incredibly excited to be working on Carina Press.
Aideen O’Leary-Chung, Manager Digital Commerce: As a member of the Harlequin team for 10 years, three of them as part of the Digital team, Aideen has been thrilled to be allowed to indulge in her love of books – historical romance, thrillers and contemporary romance being amongst her favorite types of books – under the guise of working. She can’t wait to seeing what previously unimagined genres our authors will create within Carina Press! In the rare instances when she’s not reading, she’s watching TV, corralling two small boys or doing all three at the same time.
Angela, Brent, Eleanor, Aideen and I have been working like crazy behind the scenes creating a business plan, developing the Carina Press brand and logo, writing editorial guidelines, setting up the submissions inbox, and have begun work on the Carina Press bookstore. Every once in a wheile, we would stop and smile at how easily most hurdles were overcome, do a little happy dance about what a great idea Carina Press was, and how happy we were to be creating it, and then we’d go tackle the next hurdle.
Today is the day we’ve been working toward: our “birth” if you will, and the start of editorial acquisitions.
Tomorrow will be about marketing plans, acquisitions, covers.
Today we’re celebrating.