The handsome rake that eventually turns out to be an earnest lover is an idea in literature that many find fascinating. Mills and Boon (M&B) has always harped on that very idea, when it comes to creating a plot for their stories. The novels tickle the Indian sensibility even more because of its larger-than-life characters, setting, and emotional drama, much like our Bollywood movies.
The publishing house, Harlequin Mills and Boon, is taking Bollywood really seriously. In their most recent tie-up, the typical M&B hero will take inspiration from Imran Khan’s character in I Hate Luv Storys (IHLS).
The publishing house has collaborated with Dharma Productions to come up with a special series of eight books, which will carry forward the story of the lovers in IHLS and Imran as the cynical loverboy.
Clare Somerville, of Harlequin Mills and Boon says, "We did a special pack with the cover of the film posters of IHLS, and held a competition where the winner could meet Imran Khan. Imran and Sonam Kapoor really cooperated with us and as it turned out, Imran’s mum is a great M&B fan!"
The publishing house, which opened office in the city about two years ago, is planning to publish 14 titles every month in India. “We publish about 60 titles worldwide every month and have content that’s published globally. From these 60, we publish 14 in India,” Somerville informs.
A writer hunt is also on the agenda. Last year’s writing competition in India — Passions Short Story Contest — threw up Bangalore-based writer Milan Vohra as the winner. Now her story is in the process of turning into a novel that will be launched by the end of the year. Somerville says, “We always encourage would-be authors to send us their works. We’re on the lookout for new Indian writers, who can write for global market as well. M&B is published in over 100 countries in a plethora of languages, so the content is important.”
The next competition will be held before the year ends and the submission guidelines can be viewed on their website, www.millsandboonindia.com . There’s also plan to introduce two new lines — Romance and Historical — in the Indian market.