As 2012 fades into the new year, Minneapolis publisher Scarletta Press is turning over a new leaf, complete with a new logo. The company, which was founded in 2005 as a publisher of adult titles, is restructuring and rebranding itself to better reflect its eclectic list and its new emphasis on children’s publishing. Going forward, the company will be known as Scarletta, with its list divided into four imprints: Scarletta Press, Scarletta Junior, Scarletta Kids, and Red Portal Press.
“We want people to know us for both our adult and our children’s titles,” Desiree Bussiere, Scarletta’s publicity director, says. “It’s easier to do so by launching imprints.”
Each of the four Scarletta imprints will focus on specific genres for specific ages: Scarletta Press, the flagship imprint, will continue to include adult titles, with a narrowing of focus in terms of genres. Rather than publishing an eclectic mix of books, Scarletta Press will focus on autobiographical fiction, creative nonfiction, and memoir. Scarletta Junior will publish fiction and nonfiction for middle grade readers, and Scarletta Kids will focus on picture books and storybooks for children up to age eight. Red Portal Press, Scarletta’s hybrid self-publishing imprint, launched earlier this fall with its debut title, Knives on the Cutting Edge by Bob Macdonald.
“When Ian Leask [Scarletta’s founding publisher] left last year,” Bussiere explains, “we rethought our structure: how to acquire books and what the future face of the company would be. We realized we really enjoyed producing and marketing children’s books.” Scarletta started publishing children’s books in 2011, with Lost in Lexicon, a novel by Pendred Noyce. A second children’s title, The Ice Castle, also by Noyce, followed a year later.
“It prompted us to look for more children’s titles, and thus create our imprints,” Bussiere says, adding that in 2012 the company also hired as their marketing manager Nora Evans, a University of Denver Publishing Institute graduate experienced in editing books for children.
Of the 12 titles Scarletta will publish in 2013 – up from two to four releases each year – six are Scarletta Kids titles, four are Scarletta Junior titles, and two are adult titles.
Spring titles include Determined to Matter (June) by Jen O’Hara, an adult title published under the Scarletta Press imprint; The Mighty Quinn (May) by Robyn Parnell and Cool World Cooking (July) by Lisa Wagner, to be released under the Scarletta Junior imprint; and Nalah and the Pink Tiger (March) by Anne Sawyer-Aitch, A Day at the Lake (March) by Stephanie Wallingford and Dawn Rynders, and Betsy’s Day at the Game (April) by Greg Bancroft, which will be published under the Scarletta Kids imprint.
My Monster Needs a Costume by Paul Czajak, a September release, will be the first hardcover picture book published by the press. The book is also the first in a series, Monster and Me. All Scarletta titles are released simultaneously in print and e-book formats.
Scarletta has also entered into a partnership with Minneapolis’ ABDO Publishing, which specializes in books for the school and library markets. Scarletta will redesign and obtain new ISBNs for titles that ABDO previously has published for the school and library markets, and then sell the reconfigured releases to the trade, special, gift, and mass merchandise markets. “Probably every series will include these collaborations,” says Scarletta publisher Nancy Tuminelly.
“It’s been exciting, trying to create a new publishing company,” Tuminelly adds, emphasizing that Scarletta will never become exclusively a children’s book publisher: “We’ll look at adult fiction or nonfiction that correlates with issues or concepts that our children’s books deal with.”