Santa Monica, CA. Backlit (www.backlitfiction.com) launched its first series of teen franchise ebooks via Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Apple: Borrowing Abby Grace and The Start-Up and The Dig, followed by Young Americans, Future Perfect and The Defiants early next year. Similar to such Young Adult (YA) successes as Gossip Girl and The Hunger Games, Backlit ebooks will create new franchises tailored to, and tested with, teen audiences.
Backlit has a first look film and television deal with Jack Giarraputo of Happy Madison. Jack is one of Hollywood’s most successful producers; his films have grossed more than $2 billion domestically. He is Backlit’s strategic partner, creative advisor and lead investor. Backlit is reinventing publishing by shortening the path from writer to reader, said Jack Giarraputo.
The Backlit model quickly determines audience and franchise value. The speed of ebook production allows Backlit to test fresh commercial ideas with the audiences who will love them, said BacklitPublisher, Panio Gianopoulos. Working closely with some of Hollywood’s best creative minds, Backlit is committed to telling stories that will be loved as books, television shows and movies.
Episodic ebook content will be previewed, via Facebook and Twitter, which allows Backlit to engage teens who routinely find their entertainment online. In addition, immediate audience feedback ,interactivity and spin-offs take on a whole new value when stories are created and released quickly. Focused on Millennial readers with episodic attention spans, Backlit books will be released exclusively in digital every few weeks, yet offer more narrative depth than typical Amazon Kindle Singles can provide.
Appealing to Millennials who consume in 140 character bursts, Backlit Fiction will address young reluctant readers who are increasingly turning to mobile devices for their entertainment needs. Backlit is committed to innovating methods of storytelling in order to attract and convert new readers to the world of books.
Backlit subscribes to the on-demand model, where ebooks are the new apps for fiction consumption. Episodic in nature, Backlit stories can be consumed and purchased anywhere, and read in any order. This pairing of creation and distribution is tailored to the surprisingly text-friendly teen demographic; 15-24 year olds spend on average 50 minutes a day reading. This is nearly double the 32 minutes spent reading by 25-64 year olds, according to Nielsen.
Backlit: Fiction Forward (BFF) will become a quick, ready and trusted companion to the young adult audience. On a unique promotional basis, devoted readers can also win character walk-on opportunities in upcoming episodes; and a unique teen start-up challenge based around The Start-Up series. Backlit is also launching the Backlit Mentors Program (www.backlitmentors.com), whereby the publisher will mentor, crowdsource, and commission new YA authors to write episodes based on their series story lines.
Current Backlit Series:
BORROWING ABBY GRACE (www.facebook.com/borrowingabby): Sent to repair the lives and loves of teenagers on the edge of disaster, smart and sassy Abby Grace has everything going for her, except one thing: a body. Episode 1: The Shadow | Episode 2: Girl Steals Guy | Episode 3: Teacher’s Pet
THE DIG (www.facebook.com/zoeandzeus): Out of time and out of her element, teenager Zoe Calder finds herself in ancientGreece, battling against the power of the Olympians and the vengeance of a scorned goddess‹all for the strange and mysterious boy she has come to love. Book 1: Zoe and Zeus
THE START-UP (www.facebook.com/doreye,named for the story’s start-up): When a collegefreshman’s breakthrough software program catapults her into the limelight, she and her twin brother must navigate a treacherous world of money, power, and envy: Silicon Valley. Episode 1: The Start-Up | Episode 2: The Anti-Social Network | Episode 3: Beautiful Code