Today on the blog, I am really excited to welcome Sarah Benton, the Sales and Marketing manager from Hot Key Books. Hot Key Books is a brand new publisher who will be launching their first Young Adult book in August. Sarah is here to tell her us all about the philosophy behind their new company with a little help from a few of their authors.
Well, I’m going to say it right here, on the excellent Serendipity Reviews (thank you for having me!) that at Hot Key Books, we are putting authors, and author care, back at the centre of what we do. It’s hugely important, in a creative industry, to invest in creativity. And quite simply, an author’s imagination is the most creative part of what we do, and this should never be forgotten.
It’s been hugely exciting therefore to work with the editorial team to build that list of authors. Since we all got the jobs last year, we immediately started reading submissions, and I think before most of us even had a desk we had several contracts done already! A mixture of debut and established authors, from the UK, US and Australia filled the first list. Many authors who agreed to publish with us did so knowing they would say goodbye to social lives, family time and Christmas holidays in order to meet our (slightly punishing – sorry!) launch list schedule. But they did so as they are as excited as us to be part of something new and different. Our first books - the epic INSIGNIA by debut author S. J. Kincaid, and the urban love story ANGEL DUST by Sarah Mussi - will publish this August, less than a year after our company was even founded.
Many people have asked us what we are looking for in the books and authors we are buying, what is the ‘secret formula’ that makes us say yes. We always say this: it’s not one genre, not one trend, but simply fantastic storytelling by great writers. Our launch list is a bit different from what’s out there at the moment - not everyone will like every book, and that’s the point. People’s tastes are varied, and books should reflect this. In our list we have brought together a set of stories in which diversity, originality and just good quality writing are order of the day.
When I was putting this blog together, I asked a few of the authors on our launch list if they could write a few lines about the experience and I was blown away by the comments we had. I think I’ll just leave it to them to sum up how we’re all feeling at the moment. I hope you enjoy getting to know them as much as I have.
Sarah Benton, Sales & Marketing Manager – Hot Key Books (http://www.hotkeybooks.com)
S. J. Kincaid, author of INSIGNIA
Gareth P. Jones, author of CONSTABLE & TOOP
‘Can you get the completed manuscript to us by January?’ Sarah added.
I tried not to bat an eyelid - GET THE MANUSCRIPT IN BY JANUARY! But being one of the first titles on a launch list for an editor like Sarah Odedina and a new and exciting publisher like Hot Key would, I knew, more than compensate for the lack of sleep, FOR CANCELLING CHRISTMAS and being disowned by my family. AND I WAS RIGHT. The experience has been life changing. I’d do it all again tomorrow. I want to thank Sarah Odedina from the bottom of my heart for that invitation. ‘THANK YOU Sarah,’ and ‘THANK YOU Hot Key team,’ for being such awesome people.
Sarah Mussi, author of ANGEL DUST
Lydia Syson, author of A WORLD BETWEEN US
Wow! Hot Key Books will definitely be a publisher to take note of. I can't wait for August to get a chance to read the books they are bringing out. Well done Hot Key Books for bursting onto the YA scene.
Want to see their complete launch list? Then please click here to find out what delights they will be bringing us.
To find out more:
Twitter: @sarahbenton, @LydiaSyson @sarahmussi @jonesgarethp @SJKincaidBooks