Authors, Writers, Publishers, and Book Readers

Having a book published under the publishing giant Harlequin's umbrella must be almost universally irresistible to writers. Think it's a pipe dream? Think again, because Harlequin offers an excellent online resource to help you and your novel reach those heights. It's called Write For Us and is within eHarlequin. The publishing company has created a section purely for writers sharing advice, submission guidelines and more on how to get published by Harlequin.

Particularly useful is their very detailed manuscript guidelines page. When dealing with an enormous company like Harlequin keep in mind they have numerous different series running at any one time. You must be very careful that you submit the right manuscript format, to the right place, and for the right series.

For example, they state that "Harlequin, Silhouette, Mills & Boon and Steeple Hill publish only category/series romance and women's fiction" right off the bat. That statement should stop any nonfiction writer in their tracks considering any of those imprints. Take heart though, because as it turns out...

Harlequin's not just about lovebirds!

What happens when a bunch of writers play word association with the word "Harlequin"? The word "romance" is the top response, I'd wager. That's arguably what this esteemed publishing company is best known for, after all: romantic fiction. Don't automatically assume however that Harlequin's vast empire doesn't have any publishing opportunities to offer you unless you write romantic fiction. There are plenty scattered throughout the Harlequin kingdom and some may surprise you.

To date, Harlequin has sold over 6.5 billion books worldwide. According to eHarlequin, the company "publishes over 110 titles a month in 32 languages in 115 international markets on six continents." Such staggering consistent success doesn't come from letting the grass grow under your feet. So what else are they interested in? I'll share a few examples.


Have you written a non-fiction book "that will entertain, support, inspire and provide insight to women as their lives and roles evolve and change"? A memoir perhaps or inspirational book? Then check out their submission guidelines for Nonfiction Editorial. They accept agented submissions in this category.

How about if your writing leans towards otherworldly creatures and things that go bump in the night? No problem. Harlequin Nocturne is expanding their ebook program Nocturne Bites and on the hunt for "fast-paced novellas that hook the reader early on by establishing a paranormal world and its conflicts. We are looking for stories of vampires, shape-shifters, werewolves, psychic powers, etc. set in contemporary times." It's worth noting that complete manuscripts are welcomed from unpublished authors too via email. If you have 10,000-15,000 words ready and waiting, submissions are open.

Those are just two examples. For a complete list, explore the Writing Guidelines page (pictured above) which lists every series they have and links to each individual imprint's submission guidelines. Good luck!

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Comment by Tkumah A&T&D on April 18, 2011 at 4:43am

I did not know that, thank you for sharing. While I was reading I was thinking that may be I could try myself with my next book.... there is romance there but....who knows. 6.5 billion books is impressive.



Comment by scribbler on April 22, 2011 at 7:18am
Is that true, Donald, that they wouldn't accept that? I'm wondering where you got that idea from and if they have stated that's a rule. Just curious. :)
Comment by scribbler on May 27, 2011 at 3:47am
Donald, I think that's interesting. I read recently that Harlequin Romance uses male in-house writers under female pen names. I wonder why not? When you think about it you don't see books authored by women about war on the shelves either for example and I can't believe that no woman has ever done that. I don't think men would buy them and I think Harlequin's looking at it from the same angle.


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