Pan Macmillan’s digital imprint, Momentum, has launched a ‘romance community and publishing imprint’ called Momentum Moonlight.
If you’ve been watching the romance publishing space in Australia over the last year or so, this probably won’t come as a huge surprise. Momentum has been steadily nurturing its stable of romance and erotica authors, as well as the romance reading community through social media, and having a romance-focused brand seems like the next logical step.
According to the official announcement, Momentum Moonlight is ‘a romance community and publishing imprint, aimed at publishing new romance, erotica and new adult titles in addition to building a community of romance readers.’ In 2014, Momentum will publish two titles per month under the Moonlight imprint. In the meantime, it looks like previously published Momentum titles are being moved to the new imprint.
Update 13/9/2013: The first title to be published under the imprint is Holding Out For A Hero by Amy Andrews. It will be out October 1.
It’s early days yet, but there are a couple of things that I think Momentum does differently from its nearest rivals, Escape (Harlequin) and Destiny (Penguin). First, Momentum hasn’t really stood solidly within the romance genre. It’s romancey titles run the spectrum from genre romance to erotica. This is problematic for readers like me who need to know exactly what kind of book I’m picking up, but I think it taps into a market—made larger by the success of popular erotica—that Escape and Destiny flirt with but don’t aggressively cater to. I’m not sure if this will lead to the sort of genre confusion that I’ve seen happen in other imprints where the HEA is sometimes there and sometimes not, but I guess time will tell.
Second, I think Momentum’s social media presence is a lot stronger, probably because they have a team of people on Twitter and Facebook who seem to spend a lot of time on Twitter and Facebook. Like, a lot of time. Don’t get me wrong—Escape and Destiny do well on social media, but Momentum uses a combination of blogging, podcasting, tweeting and Facebooking to reach different readers, rather than the same readers across different platforms.
You can check out the new imprint on the Momentum Moonlight website. The other interesting aspect of this new venture is the interactive nature of what Momentum seems to be trying to do. Readers can contribute to the blog, although there’s no indication that they’ll be paid, which makes it questionable, imo, but your mileage may vary.