Avon Jumps Into the Digital Age

From Publisher's Lunch comes word of another "legacy publisher's" new e-book-only romance imprint:

Yesterday Avon announced its digital-first imprint, Avon Impulse, which will feature ebook novels and novellas (with POD editions also available) by current Avon authors and aims to "seek new talent to nurture in an e-book marketplace that finds romance experiencing expansive growth." The first title will be Katherine Ashe's enovella, "A Lady's Wish," released next week, with plans to publish at least one new title every week going forward. Authors will not receive an advance, but will get 25 percent net royalties for the first 10,000 copies sold, and 50 percent thereafter. Unlike Harlequin's digital imprint Carina Press, Avon Impulse will use DRM, just like all of the traditional Harper imprints.

Authors can submit using an easy online form. Check it out by clicking through to the Avon Impulse website.

So what does an author gain by going with Avon Impulse or Carina Press rather than self-publishing to, say, Kindle, which offers a 70% royalty? Editing, for starters, along with net galleys, cover art and marketing support, plus whatever the prestige factor's worth to you. For many writers, I think this is a perfectly viable choice, especially since the current publishing environment (particularly in mass market original) is making it so tough to break into print.

Does anyone else want to weigh in on the pros and cons of the route?


Suzan Harden said…
The only differences going the Kindle route as opposed to the Avon or Carina Press route is that the writer is responsible for and better know what he/she is doing as far as editing/cover art/marketing.

Are these learnable tasks? Yes. Can the writer hire someone to do them? Yes. Should a writer be willing to work his/her ass off no matter what path he/she takes? Yes.

The real question for a writer as a small business owner is what tasks are you comfortable doing yourself and which tasks would you prefer to pay someone else to do? And make no mistake, if your ms is bought by a publisher, you are in a sense paying them to edit, market, etc. your book for you.
That's a great assessment, Suzan. In the next six months, I have two traditionally published books launching, along with another book that I've chosen to take directly to e-book on my own. Both routes entail a lot of hard work if you do them right. And doing them right is the only way to get anywhere going either route.

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