Carina is a constellation in the Southern sky, and is Latin for “keel” – as in, the fins and structures operating below the surface of the water unseen yet keeping the ship balanced, and on its course. Here’s an interesting bit of physics I didn’t know: the keel’s job is to convert a sideways force to a forward force, sort of like trying to figure out how to convert a changing tide or market to keep your industry moving forward.
It’s even more awesome when applied to Harlequin, who launched Carina Press today, a digital-only publishing house. it is a division of Harlequin Enterprises LTD but because it is digital only, as in, not print, it operates separately.
Carina is embracing the digital publishing business model as well, offering no advances or DRM-
Wait, hold up, what now?! HOLY MERCIFUL HEAVENS, NO DRM? NOW I’m stunned. Until now I was nodding my head.
Carina will compensate authors at a higher royalty rate (no word yet on the percentage range) and the books will be sold direct to consumers through the Carina website, and through other vendors.
Angela James has been hired as the Executive Editor of Carina (Mazel tov, Angie!) and is joining Malle Vallik, Brent Lewis, Eleanor Elliott, and Aideen O’Leary-Chung as the team awesome behind Carina. I’m not sure if you’re familiar with them, but I’ve worked with them, particularly Aideen and Malle for awhile now, and if you’re looking for sharp behind-the-scenes organization and amazing forward-thinking ideas, go visit their cubicles.
I’m still reeling over the absence of DRM. Wow.
(Edited 912amEST) Carina’s use of the no-advance model calls into question whether Harlequin will remain on RWA’s list of Approved publishers, or whether it will be listed among the non-subsidy, non-vanity publishers.
Regardless, if a company with a reputation and profitable history as Harlequin who can and does evolve with the times embraces digital publishing both as a business enterprise and as a business model, maybe it’s time everyone who doubted it took another look at the possibilities. In other words, get on board – the ship is sailing.
Mazel tov, folks. I wish you warm winds and smooth sailing, and success on a very close horizon.