The Dare Blitz Opens Today!

Welcome to our #DAREblitz!

From April 9th – 20th, our editors will be sharing information about Harlequin DARE here on the So You Think You Can Write blog, as well as Twitter and Facebook. That includes what we’re looking for in new submissions!

Most exciting—you can skip the slush pile and submit your proposal to us during the blitz for a response from a DARE editor by May 4th!

Here’s what we need from you:

  • A brief cover letter that gives an overview of your story and includes any previous publishing credits, writing contest wins, or affiliations.
  • A 3-5 page synopsis that tells us what happens in your book and how it ends (give us those key moments and conflicts, but don’t forget to mention the bedroom scenes and show us the heat level).
  • The first chapter of your manuscript.

When you’ve polished all that off and you’re ready to submit, send it to us through our DARE blitz page on Harlequin’s Submittable site, here.

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Harlequin DARE is the sexiest series we publish. So our editors are looking for the hottest books you can write—but not every sexy story is meant for DARE.

Here’s what every Harlequin DARE book needs:

  • An empowered, independent, ambitious heroine
  • A commanding alpha male who is enthusiastic about consent—in and out of the bedroom!
  • A story that relates to the sexual relationship—don’t just be sexy in the bedroom. Bring the tension and playfulness of the sexual relationship into the rest of the story.
  • Several sexually explicit sex scenes that use realistic language (no euphemisms, please!)
  • A glamourous, international setting that could be either urban or exotic.

It’s also important to keep in mind that Harlequin DARE books are simultaneously published around the world as Mills & Boon DARE. This means that your story must be appealing to a global audience—with relatable characters, captivating, well known settings and a playful, provocative, contemporary tone.

Join us—and get ready to turn up the heat!

Kathleen Scheibling

Executive Editor, Harlequin DARE

@KScheibling

 


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Comments

  1. should the cover letter include the pitch or teaser.
    is that what you mean by “an overview of your story”.. Thank you…
    and the synopsis…double spaced or signle

    • Katie Gowrie

      Hi Emma, the cover letter could include a pitch or teaser (just a brief explanation so we know how/why it fits our line). We’re not too picky about formatting for the synopsis so double or single is fine, as long as we have a good understanding of how the story unfolds and how it ends 🙂

      If you want more tips on cover letters and synopsis, we have a few posts here on SYTYCW you’re more than welcome to check out, if you’d like. Thanks for your questions!

    • Katie Gowrie

      Hi Kassie, for urban settings in this series, we’d like them to be major metropolitan areas (Sydney, London, Paris and the like, or LA and NYC would be fine in the States). Other great settings could include places like the Amalfi Coast, the Caribbean or Hawaii, so there’s room for a variety of glamorous and gorgeous backdrops, including vacation spots. I’d encourage you tweak the setting, and check out the series guidelines for more on this. Thanks! 🙂

  2. Cherith O'Connor

    Hi this is so exciting! Quick question, would Cape Town be considered alright as an international setting? It has so much to offer and we have toyrists here all the time. I live in Cape Town.

    • Katie Gowrie

      Hi Anna. Yes, lots of billionaires in this series! He doesn’t have to be a billionaire (we have biker heroes that aren’t as affluent) but he should be an alpha hero and confident in his skills and what he does. The H&H for Dare usually live some type of high life and exist in heightened spheres of power or some type of heightened situation, whether it’s gritty or glamorous. Hope that helps!

    • Katie Gowrie

      No Suzie, as long as we get a good idea of the heat level and chemistry from the opening chapter and synopsis. Heightened sexual tension is also a key hook for Dare! Thanks for your question.

  3. I submitted a story to your imprint, Entangled Publishing. Now I’ve sent in a different story to the blitz. Is it acceptable to have both submitted, or do I need to withdraw the older one?