Escape Publishing: Aussie Authors Go Digital

Recently, Harlequin Australia launched their new digital imprint; Escape Publishing. Today I have Kate from Escape Publishing here to share the news and to tell us all a little bit about Harlequin Australia’s new venture.


Thanks so much for inviting me to Bookish Ardour! I loved your recent post about Dead Until Dark – I had exactly the opposite reaction. I read the books, then watched True Blood and was all, ‘what is this crap? What did they do to Sookie?’ I’m still suspicious of people who like the TV show better than the books. Do you buy Anna Paquin as a blonde?

What? What was that? Escape Publishing? Oh right!

Ahem. Please allow me to introduce myself. I’m Kate, and I’m the Managing Editor of Harlequin Australia’s new digital-first imprint, Escape Publishing. This means that I get to read romance novels for a living. This makes me the luckiest person that has ever lived ever. And I’m here to talk about it.

So Harlequin Australia was reading thousands and thousands of brilliant manuscripts, but due to the limitations of the print book business many were just not able to be published because they were too risky, too niche, too cross-genre, too whatever. So that’s where Escape Publishing came in. With a digital-first model, we are better able to take those risks, cater to niche, seek to lead trends, all with a focus on Australian voices and Australia and New Zealand set stories.

I’ve long been a advocate of romance in Australia, and have an editorial background, so Harlequin approached me to run Escape Publishing, and because I’m not an idiot, I jumped with embarrassing speed to say yes.

Kate with publishing manager Haylee Kerans and the five launch authors at the Escape Publishing launch party. Click through to learn about the launch party.

The Escape Publishing team is quite small, which makes us flexible, but we’re very lucky to have the backing of the Harlequin team for things like marketing, cover design, and support.

All of our books, including our launch titles, are DRM and geographic restriction free, competitively priced, and available at the biggies (amazon, iTunes, B&N, etc) and smaller e-book retailers.

Want to know about our launch titles? Well, first, the  most important thing to know is that they are all on sale for a limited time to celebrate the launch: Christmas Wishes, Chaos Born, In Safe Hands, and Grease Monkey Jive are available for $0.99, and our erotic novella Chains of Revenge is available for free. So get thee to your download machine of choice.

The launch titles are:

Chains of Revenge by Keziah Hill, a dark erotic fantasy novella.

Chaos Born by Rebekah Turner, a complex, darkly humoured urban fantasy debut.

Christmas Kisses by Rhian Cahill, a sweet, sexy, sensual holiday romance novella.

Grease Monkey Jive by Ainslie Paton, a groovy, meaty, modern contemporary romance.

In Safe Hands by Lee Christine, a sophisticated, polished, suspenseful romantic suspense.

You can get more information about each of the titles and Escape Publishing itself on our website: which also has a ton of feedback mechanisms, including social media. So let us know what you think. Are we succeeding in our novel approach? How can we do better?

And thanks for hosting me today! (Seriously, though, blonde Anna Paquin? Really?)


A big thank you to Kate for stopping by today and telling us all a little about Escape Publishing. Kate will also be making appearances on a number of other blogs, which you can check out here. Do you think Kate might be suspicious of me? I do love the True Blood series better than the books…. So far… Although I definitely can’t buy Anna Paquin as a blonde. Anyway, go check out the titles! I’ve already started downloading them myself.

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