Avon is calling for open submissions for its digital-first publishing list.
The HarperCollins imprint, which publishes digital commercial fiction, including authors such as Phillipa Ashley and Sam Carrington, is reaching out to aspiring writers and asking them to email novels directly to its editing team. The full manuscript should be emailed along with a 250-word “topline pitch” and the author's details.
Victoria Oundjian, editor at Avon, said: “We’re really excited to be opening submissions at Avon for the first time. We are on the lookout for commercial fiction from laugh-out-loud romantic comedies, to sweeping historical, psychological suspense, crime thrillers and feel-good women’s fiction.
"We want to hear from voices across the storytelling world, featuring characters we can’t stop talking about, but who all of our readers can relate to be they 25 or 75.”
The company has spoken recently of its drive to reach more customers digitally, but this is the first time it has opened submissions. In December, Oliver Malcolm, HarperCollins publishing strategy director of fiction, non-fiction and Avon, described Elke Desanghere's appointment as digital marketing manager as part of its new digital “emphasis”.
He said: “The e-book landscape continues to shift – and it is important to find a competitive advantage wherever possible. What remains critical for our authors is our ability to reach more readers digitally, and so we will continue to prioritise the recruitment of experts in this area.”
Many other publishers have opened their doors to unagented writers including fellow HarperCollins imprint, Borough Press, which called for literary novels in April last year. Indie publisher Galley Beggar Press asked for submissions in the summer while independent poetry publisher Offord Road Books has opened submissions window exclusively to writers from black, asian and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds until March.
For more information, visit the Avon website.