NEW YORK: Hoping to tap into a whole new market, Harlequin
Enterprises, the world's largest publisher of romance fiction, is
launching a new division: Red Dress Ink.
The new book line is being pitched as Sex and the City meets Ally
That is, Red Dress appeals to single 20- and 30-something women. Current
titles include See Jane Date, Milk Run, and Slightly Single.
The PR division of Trahan, Burden & Charles (TBC) has been tapped to
launch and brand the new imprint.
Traditionally, the Harlequin titles have appealed to baby boom women,
according to Pam Spengler-Jaffee, TBC's account supervisor. Therefore,
the book publisher, which was founded in Canada in 1949, realized a need
to capture younger readers.
As part of the launch, the agency developed a "Single Woman's Tool Kit"
for media, that included a nail file, recipes for apple martinis, red
pens, and aromatherapy products. The media response has been very
positive, said Spengler-Jaffee. Stories have run in outlets including
USA Today, the New York Post, Chicago Sun-Times, Fox News Network, and
Spengler-Jaffee said that one of the books almost made it onto Oprah
Winfrey's list, but got cut from a segment due to time limitations.
While some critics dismiss this genre of novel, Spengler-Jaffee said the
authors are "serious-minded, intelligent writers dedicated to their
Red Dress has also launched a competition throughout North America that
challenges high-school- and college-age writers to submit published
features or news articles. The winner will receive $5,000 toward