Curtis Brown Literary and Talent Agency will officially launch its digital publishing arm, Studio 28, in March next year.
Studio 28 will publish in the UK and other territories, seeking rights from authors already on the agency’s books or “rediscovering and reinventing literary gems from 100 years of the agency’s backlist”. It aims to publish around 12 to 16 titles over the next year.
Before its official launch, it will release Giles Coren’s How to Eat Out, released in the UK by Hodder Paperbacks, in the US in January to coincide with the food critic’s appearances in Canadian and US television programmes.
It will also release Howard Jacobson’s The Very Model of a Man in spring.
Curtis Brown’s Rufus Purdy told The Bookseller: We are not any kind of threat to traditional publishing. At the moment it’s about exploring niches. It’s about working with authors and maximising their incomes and allowing them to get their books to market.”
Studio 28 was started after restaurant critic and author Jay Rayner came to Curtis Brown to say he wanted to publish The Apologist as an e-book with Amazon’s White Glove programme. The agency instead decided it would set up its own digital publishing arm.
Purdy said: “We thought it was ideal for what we wanted to do. We wanted to create a platform for our clients, especially those who are vocal on social media.”
Rayner’s book was released in September as part of a soft launch of Studio 28.