Simon & Schuster UK has announced an “industry-first partnership” with Heat magazine for a short story competition and a free monthly "Holiday Reads" e-book promotion. The publisher's women’s fiction community, Books and the City, is joining with the magazine this summer to offer “exclusive editorial and digital content throughout the magazine and its online channels” supporting the e-book download.
Entries open today for the #heatseeker short story competition “created to discover the newest and most exciting writing talent”. The winning entry will secure an e-book contract with S&S UK with the story published in e-book format on the publisher’s Digital Originals list as well as an author mentoring session with bestselling writer Paige Toon. The judging panel consists of: Toon, Lucie Cave, brand editor-in-chief at Heat, novelist and Heat’s book reviews editor Isabelle Broom, S&S UK’s Emma Capron and Sara-Jade Virtue, brand director at booksandthecity.co.uk. Entrants must submit 2,500 words before 11pm on 30th September, and the winner will be announced on 7th December.
Also launching this week and running until September is the e-book summer reading promotion, Heat Holiday Reads. In one issue per month, the magazine will offer a free e-book download from a selected S&S author, as well as “exclusive editorial and digital content throughout the magazine and its online channels”. The first title is These Days of Ours by Juliet Ashton, and will be available until 25th April. The promotion will feature a further seven S&S titles throughout its duration, each embargoed until its feature week.
Isabelle Broom, Heat’s book reviews editor, said: “We at Heat are tremendously excited to be working with the team at booksandthecity.co.uk on this brilliant giveaway and the #heatseeker competition, which we’re confident will be the start of a fabulous writing career for one of our readers. We’re passionate about all things books, and believe this partnership will be an incredible success.”
Sara-Jade Virtue, S&S UK’s brand director of commercial fiction, said: "Through our industry-first partnership, Heat Holiday Reads will be offering a new twist on the FFER (free for every reader) model, with a selection of cracking novels by some of our bestselling Books and the City authors available free for heat readers throughout the summer. Books and the City are also delighted to be working with the team at heat on the #heatseeker competition to ultimately acquire a wonderful new addition to our Digital Originals publishing programme.”
The Digital Originals initative, S&S UK's 'e-book first' publishing strand, was established in 2014. It hosted an open submission day last July seeking chapters from unpublished authors.