June 7, 2010

My Week to celebrate the Launch of Carina Press starts of with a guest blog by a woman I truly admire for how she manages to combine professionalism, knowledge and social skills. I hope you all join me in welcoming Angela James, Executive Editor with Carina Press on this first day of Carina Week. (Oh and don't forget to check out the CarinaWeek giveaway at the end of this post)

Take a Journey with Me

In the past few years of working in digital publishing, when people have asked me and wondered about its growth, where it's going and if it will go anywhere, the one question they always asked was: what large traditional publisher do you think will be the first to get into digital-first publishing? My answer was always the same: Harlequin.

I hadn't been between jobs for more than a day (possibly not even a full day) when I got a phone call from Harlequin last September: we've been discussing the possibility of a digital-first imprint, would you be interested in coming to consult with us? Of course I said "yes" so fast I'm pretty sure I may have spoken it in a language closely resembling Tongues.

So of course, I wasn't there for the conception stages of Carina Press, but when I hear the story told by one of the digital team (such as Malle Vallik, Aideen O'Leary-Chung, or Eleanor Elliott) this is what I hear "We had been discussing starting this imprint, but were still in the planning stages when we learned you were available. Choirs of angels started to sing and words of rejoicing were heard ringing around the Harlequin offices. We dropped everything and called you immediately, because we knew this was the sign the imprint was meant to be and we couldn't possibly do it without you."

Okay, possibly I paraphrased a lot and am relating that through my own personal filter but I'm pretty sure that's REALLY close to how it went. Well, kind of close, anyway...in some small way.

Getting Carina up and running has been a learning experience for all of us, though. I was brought on because of my experience with the digital-first industry and my understanding of behind-the-scenes workings and details of digital-first. Harlequin and the Harlequin team bring to the table a few years (you know, just a few) of successful publishing and innovating. The digital-first business model is a bit different than that of a traditional publisher such as Harlequin and we've had an exciting time working out how the two can come together to create Carina Press in these past few months.

The authors who've been contracted to publish with us have been experiencing the Carina model behind-the-scenes in a variety of ways. Today, readers will finally get to experience how we've brought that together in the form of everything from the editorial content to how we've packaged the books (take note of what's at the front of the book versus what's at the back). It's a tremendously nerve-wracking time for me, waiting to see the response, but at the end of the day, I'm so incredibly proud of how our team came together and created Carina, that I feel we've managed to build something amazing and awesome. Now we have the opportunity to show it to you, the readers, not just today, but in the weeks, months and years to come. I hope you'll take the journey with us.


Angela James is the Executive Editor at Carina Press
You can find her on Twitter, the Carina Press website and her own blog


As announced last week my Carina Week will not be without a fabulous giveaway, courtesy of Carina Press! Up for grabs here on the blog is one coupon code worth $ 15 to spend at Carina Press, buying the books you'd like to try out. Believe me, if what I've read is an indication, there is something for everybody and the books I've read were gems in their genres, each and every one of them. Okay, now to the important part. How can you win this coupon code? That's easy.

  • Just leave a (meaningful) comment on the posts during my Carina Week.
  • Each comment will give you an entry.
  • There will be 6 Carina Week blog-posts so that gives you a maximum of 6 entries if you comment on every post. Mind you, you don't have to comment on every post, it just gives you more chances if you do.
  • Make sure you leave your email address with your comment (or email it to me, through the contact link in the left sidebar if you don't want to publicly leave your email address) because it's needed to be able to claim the code.
  • On Saturday June 12th I'll tally up the entries and pick a winner via random.org

I also announced last week that there would be 2 coupon codes of $ 15 each so you might wonder, what of the other code. That one will be the prize in a Twitter-giveaway so if you want another chance at it...keep an eye on my Twitter-account this week and get tweeting because each tweet including the hashtag #CarinaWeek will be entered for the Twitter-giveaway.

So there you have it...2 chances to win an opportunity to get your mitts on some Carina Press gems!

Have fun! And hope to see a lot of you this week!


SusiSunshine said...

Wonderful post.
I'm so happy that you and the whole Harlequin team took this step. It is a wonderful idea and what I saw the far looks great. So many great authors. I just can't wait to get my hands on these pretties.

And I totally agree about the choirs of angels and all that- no other way it could have been.

Happy Launch Day!

Stella (Ex Libris) said...

Great post! I have to say I haven't heard of Carina Press until last week, but what I've learned since then amazes me. It is a wonderful idea and I'm amazed at all the great authors you have, there is no doubt Carina Press will be very successful!

Congratulations on the Launch Day! :-)

Leontine said...

It must be so exciting to take part of such a new venture and enter a new stage this week, it kinda feels like a Grand Opening and we, the readers, finally get to sample all the good stuff! I definitely bought my ticket for this journey and already have a handful of books I really -stress on the really part - need to have and read :) I'm re-discovering Harlequin in a whole new way with lots of new-to-me authors :D

girrlit said...

I have been dying for Carina to open, I am squealing like a twihard this week! Several fave authors already on board, and I am completely glued to watching the Carina journey.

Elizabeth L said...

This is quite exciting, given how much I love the Harlequin lines. Go Carina!

ms bookjunkie said...

Finally! This long-awaited day has arrived! Congratulations Carina Press and Angie, and may you be around for a long, long time to bring me awesome reads!

Now please excuse me, I need to go buy some books…

Angela James said...

Thanks for hosting my blog post today, and thanks for your tremendous support of Carina Press!

flchen1 said...

I've been eagerly following the Carina Press blog as it introduced the line up of debut authors and their stories--can't wait to get reading! Thanks for Angie's post and perspective today!

elaing8 said...

Great post.I've been keeping an eye on Carina's blog and reading about their new books coming out. I have a few(ok alot) of them that I want to read.

Cindy Spencer Pape said...

Angela and the rest of the team at Carina have made the whole process move smoothly for the authors. I am THRILLED to be a part of the Carina launch, and can't say enough good things about the group of innovators who put the whole thing together!

Bernita said...

I've admired Angela for years. She is the main reason I submitted to Carina.

JessieR said...

I am so excited about this. I heard about it first on this blog. Yay! I have to get my ereader.

Nicole said...

I am a huge fan of the different digital press's out there. I love my ereader, and think (for the most part) the quality of the digital reads is just as good as print books.

JenM said...

I've read the excerpts from the books that are releasing this month on Carina's blog and I've got at least 6 or 7 that are now on my wishlist. Kudos to Harlequin for actually embracing digital publishing instead of fighting it the way other publishers are.

jen at delux dot com

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