Magazine publisher Hearst UK is to launch a book festival which will include a new awards, accreditation and live events experience.
The company is launching The Big Book Festival to "discover the best new fiction and non-fiction titles in UK publishing" and will incorporate Hearst's nine titles: Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, Prima, Harper’s Bazaar, Esquire, Elle, Red, Women’s Health and Men’s Health.
Each magazine has been assigned a category of award. The Crime award is being hosted by Good Housekeeping, Must Reads by Cosmopolitan, Page Turners by Prima and Modern Classics by Harper’s Bazaar. Meanwhile, Esquire will be invovled with the Biography category, ELLE with women writer's, Red with non-fiction and children's, Women's Health with Wellbeing, and Men's Health with Health and Lifestyle.
For the awards, publishers are invited to submit "exciting and emerging work" published between 1st June 2017 and 31st May 2018, across these categories. The deadline for entries is 26th January. The winners will be announced at an event this summer.
Alongside the awards, Hearst will launch Big Book Live, a series of live experiences in London focusing on bringing the pages and themes of the shortlisted books to life. Further details about each of these events will be announced later in the year.
Judith Secombe, managing director of Hearst Brand Services, said: "Books are a natural fit for us at Hearst, with both our consumers and editors having such an inherent passion for quality content. By creating the Big Book Festival, we’re aiming to help boost the amazing work of authors across the country, as well as offering publishers the chance to amplify their consumer outreach campaigns by having the Hearst stamp of approval. We want to offer publishers the chance to be involved in a fully authentic retail endorsement campaign, and with one in three adults who purchased a book in the last 12 months being a Hearst consumer - this is it!"
All shortlisted books will appear in a special 24-page Big Book Awards magazine in July, given away free inside the nine Hearst magazines.
Although free to enter, the awards will involve a charge to publishers of £1,000 for each longlisting; they will also have to supply 70 copies of the book. There is a further charge for being shortlisted of between £2,500 and £4,000. The publishers of the winning titles will also be charged £2,500 to £4,000 to use the Big Book Awards Winner’s logo.
The Big Book Prize is being administered by Alastair Giles at Agile. A launch event will take place at Hearst's Broadwick St offices in Soho on 17th January.