Sourcebooks launches their latest experiment today, a subscription plan for romance readers the company is positioning as an ebook club and community. Discover A New Love offers subscribers one of four featured romance titles a month, at $9.99 for a six-month plan (so about $1.67 per book). Members can purchase additional titles at discount, and some club selections are available a month before general release.
While the initial hook is value, Sourcebooks sees the long-term appeal as discovery and community. Editorial manager Deb Werksman says in the announcement, “Readers have a hard time figuring out what they should try next. It’s an issue of discovery—finding great new authors with amazing stories.”
Members get access to online author “parties,” and participation in special offers and contests. Sourcebooks promises “the opportunity to be part of romance publishing process,” including focus groups, voting and feedback on titles and covers, the chance to get pre-publication copies for review, and more.
The program launches with Sourcebooks’ own titles, which are provided DRM-free (which enables direct selling from their own site without worrying about format compatability). The company is making the club open to other publishers, though recognizes the lack of DRM may be an obstacle to broad participation. Many of the titles are available worldwide as well.