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Ex-Harlequin Exec Launches Bookoutre, New Digital-first Pub

By Alex Mutter

Oliver Rhodes, former Marketing Controller for Harlequin UK, has launched Bookouture, a new digital publishing imprint with a focus on entertaining women’s fiction.

“My aim with Bookouture is to focus on creating global author brands and followings — through high quality editing and particularly through smart, creative digital marketing,” said Rhodes in a press release.

The UK-based publisher will release e-books and print-on-demand titles globally, while paying a 45% net receipts royalty on e-books.

Bookouture will utilize bespoke publishing and marketing strategies, which entail focusing on the author as a brand, cultivating new talent, and altering publishing techniques to suit specific authors and their stories.

“We’re not pigeonholing books or just following the latest trend,” explained Rhodes. “We’re about discovering talent and taking a long term view.”

Rhodes was with Harlequin UK for ten years, and was key in creating New Voices, an online talent search run by Mills & Boon.

“Having worked on New Voices for two years, I know that the author talent is out there,” said Rhodes. “With the rapid switch to digital I also believe more and more traditionally published authors will start to seriously consider digital first publishers as an option.”

Bookoutre looks to launch its first titles before the end of 2012, and is currently open for both agented and unagented submissions.

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