McFarlane launches Aussie children's publisher

<p>Former co-owner, m.d. and publisher of Hardie Grant Egmont, Susannah McFarlane, is to launch children&rsquo;s publishing company Lemonfizz Media. Based in Australia, LFM will work with talent both at home and internationally and has already established a partnership agreement with Scholastic in Australia and New Zealand. As part of the agreement Scholastic will be the market partner for the first three LFM series - both due to be launched in 2010 - across these territories.<br /><br />McFarlane has also written a multi-title picture-book series, which will be published by Scholastic in 2010 and 2011. However, it is not part of the LFM-Scholastic market partnership.<br /><br />McFarlane said that LFM would &quot;not be a traditional publishing company&quot; and would focus on a small number of projects that they were &quot;passionate about&quot;. LMF will invest in marketing and develop the concepts across all platforms.<br /><br />She added: &quot;I was thrilled when Scholastic approached me about future opportunities and am delighted to be able to work with such like-minded and clever people who focus just on kids&rsquo; books. Their unique reach via their clubs and fairs was also irresistible.&quot; <br /> <br />Scholastic head of publishing, Andrew Berkhut, said: &quot;Susannah&rsquo;s arrival is not only great news for Scholastic, but also ensures her special new children&rsquo;s series in 2010 will provide Australian children with more opportunities to explore and develop a lifelong love of reading.&quot;</p><p><em>EJ12, Girl Hero</em> is an adventure series for girls aged seven to 10 that was inspired by McFarlane&rsquo;s daughter. She said: &quot;I wanted stories that showed girls doing things, solving things, not being the side-kick but taking centre stage. They can still be princesses, fairies and besties but they can get out and have adventures as well. We need more girl heroes for our girls.&quot;</p><p>The second series is <em>Boy v Beast</em>, a fantasy battle series for the very young and reluctant reading boy. It will be created in partnership with educational consultant and publisher Louise Park. <br /> <br />International opportunities for both series are being canvassed. </p>