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Carina Press

Richard White

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From their FAQ
__________________________
As Carina Press is a division of Harlequin Enterprises Ltd, how is it different?

At the very basic level, Harlequin is a traditional print publisher with a robust digital-offering, while Carina Press is a digital-only publisher.

Both the contract and distribution channels are very different:

The Carina Press contract does not include an advance or DRM, and authors are compensated with a higher royalty.

Unlike Harlequin there is no guaranteed series distribution (no standing order, no direct mail, no overseas translation markets).

Carina Press titles will be sold direct to consumers through the Carina Press website, and we’ll be securing 3rd party distribution on other websites.

(emphasis added)

Carina Press FAQ #1
____________________________________________

So, let's see, yes it is backed by Harlequin, there are no advances, no guarantees of distribution and you can only buy them at their web site.

That's not a big change from other e-publishers that I can see.
 

JanDarby

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It's worrisome to me that they're adopting the no-advance model. I believe they currently pay advances to their existing e-only books (e.g., Spice Briefs), but now they're setting a precedent for not paying advances. That seems like the first step to them saying "okay, now we're not paying advances to ANY author." They might make exceptions for their top sellers, but the midlist and debut authors are likely to get squeezed.

I don't see how that's a good thing for authors. For the publisher, sure. The authors, not so much.

JD
 

Bubastes

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I'm also worried about their no-advance model. I find it interesting that they won't have DRM either. This aiso doesn't seem to help authors.
 

michael_b

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So, let's see, yes it is backed by Harlequin, there are no advances, no guarantees of distribution and you can only buy them at their web site.

That's not a big change from other e-publishers that I can see.

There is however the Harelquin reader base already in place--and since Harlequin titles are also available in eformat this will help increase traffic/sales--for romance and erotic romance titles. And there will also be third party distribution--which many epublishers also offer. You also have the backing of a large corporation behind it which means it's not going to be like the majority of small epublishers. So there are some major differences right out of the gate.
 

michael_b

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I'm also worried about their no-advance model. I find it interesting that they won't have DRM either. This aiso doesn't seem to help authors.

DRM helps no one and frustrates readers because if the device you got the original book on dies, you've pretty much lost the book and need to buy it again.

DRM does not stop pirating either because the people who put up pirated books tend to be the same people who can crack a DRM code, unlike your average reader who can't.

And the way the book industry is going is away from the old model of advances and print. I'm fine with no advance if the royalty percentage is in keeping with normal ebook publishers unlike some places that think 20% for e-royalties is fine. It's not. Standard is 35% to 50%. Gross and net being other variables to take into consideration.
 

michael_b

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It's worrisome to me that they're adopting the no-advance model. I believe they currently pay advances to their existing e-only books (e.g., Spice Briefs), but now they're setting a precedent for not paying advances. That seems like the first step to them saying "okay, now we're not paying advances to ANY author." They might make exceptions for their top sellers, but the midlist and debut authors are likely to get squeezed.

I don't see how that's a good thing for authors. For the publisher, sure. The authors, not so much.

JD

This is why they can take a chance on books that aren't the normal fare offered by Harlequin. No advance means that if a book bombs they're not taking a bath on it the way they'd do with print and advances.

This is not a print model publishing venture, they have adapted the ebook model.

The book industry is going to change and everyone is going to have to get used to the way it will be done now and into the future, rather than the way it's been done in the past. Things change. You don't see people selling horses and carriages anymore and in a few more decades print books will be the exception, not the rule.
 

Deb Kinnard

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This is why they can take a chance on books that aren't the normal fare offered by Harlequin. No advance means that if a book bombs they're not taking a bath on it the way they'd do with print and advances.

No--it might not be quite that easy. It might be that "no advance" means they simply don't get stuck with upfront costs on any particular acquisition.

Look at it this way. Digital-only publishing means the print set-up costs are no longer there. Instead of a given title costing them in the neighborhood of $20,000 to get to market, it may cost them a quarter of that (I don't know the exact cost of getting an e-book to release--I've heard figures that are too low to believe and too high to credit). Minus the advance--they begin making money that much faster, and can clear their initial investment months earlier since they're not giving the author DIME-ONE upfront.

Their reasoning breaks no new ground. It's the extant e-publishing model. Only if their royalty rate is industry standard will authors bother with them.

Of course I may be wrong. I often am. Time will tell.
 

James D. Macdonald

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The advance is only a small part of the cost of a book. Editing and promotion are far bigger slices of the pie.

This "no advance" thing is a troubling trend, and, for me, would be deal-breaker.
 

jennontheisland

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No advance is standard for romance epublishers. Most authors familiar with the system won't blink at that. On another board, Angela James reported 30% royalties. No idea if that's net or cover though.

Me, I see a huge jump in the steaminess of the content from Harlequin's Blaze line and the Spice line. Samhain and EC fill that gap. If they want typical ebook readers, they're going to have to consider how they approach the sex, imo.

Carina is also separating some genres out from the Romance/Erotic Romance umbrella by looking for mystery, horror, thriller, sci-fi etc. stories with some or no romantic elements. That's spreading things thin. It's also something other epubs have tried and for the most part abandoned.

Yeah, it's Harlequin. But it's still a new epublisher.
 

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It seems shady...

No advance, and it tries to justify it. I wouldn't have trust in a publisher like that.

And it's only ebooks...(okay, they're an ebook publisher) but available ONLY from their site, as I understand it.
 

jennontheisland

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No advance does not automatically equal shady, especially for an epublisher. In fact, as I said above, it's pretty much industry standard for romance/erotic romance epublishers.
 

veinglory

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But on the low side of normal for other epublishers (anything n the 30-40% range is common).... I think it is a case of 'wait and see' as with any other epublisher.
 

Selah March

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And it's only ebooks...(okay, they're an ebook publisher) but available ONLY from their site, as I understand it.

From the Carina Press FAQ:

"Carina Press titles will be sold direct to consumers through the Carina Press website, and we’ll be securing 3rd party distribution on other websites."

I expect this means Fictionwise, AllRomanceEbooks, Kindle, Nook, etc.

Link.

Psst. Could somebody please fix the misspelling in the thread title? Thanks.
 

Unimportant

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My guess is that Harlequin wants to dip its toe into some of the niche markets to see if they might be financially viable, without committing too much or risking offending their core readership.
 

Selah March

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But on the low side of normal for other epublishers (anything n the 30-40% range is common).... I think it is a case of 'wait and see' as with any other epublisher.

I imagine they expect authors to make up the difference in volume?

I agree. Wait and see.
 

Selah March

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I wondering if they'll accept m/m romance.

They do. It's in their submission guidelines.

"We welcome everything from the very sweet to the incredibly sexy, featuring couples (or multiples) from all walks of life and sexual orientation, including same-sex romances."

Link.
 

ChristineR

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A huge portion of e-books are m/m erotic romance though, so it makes sense that they would offer it.

I'd rather have 30% from a respected name like Harlequin or Ellora's Cave than 40% from one of the many, many do-it-yourself e-publishers out there. I've read enough posts on this forum about people selling two copies a year or something like that.