According to the announcement, the venture is an imprint devoted to publishing “books at the intersection of entertainment and genre-defying literature, including exhilarating, innovative work from some of the biggest artists and most imaginative and incisive writers of our time on a wide range of subjects such as music, sports, pop culture, activism, and art.”
The inaugural list for Roc Lit 101 will launch in Summer 2021 with “Till the End,” a memoir from superstar Major League Baseball pitcher CC Sabathia, described as a “raw, compelling memoir of baseball, family, fame, addiction, and recovery,” written with Chris Smith; and veteran music journalist Danyel Smith’s “Shine Bright,” a “brilliant weave of memoir, criticism, and biography that tells the story of black women in music as the foundational story of American pop.”
Future works include “fantastical illustrated fiction” from rapper Lil Uzi Vert and others; personal narratives that take on the biggest issues of the day like Meek Mill’s story of criminal justice and survival; coming-of-age memoirs from brilliant storytellers like Fat Joe and Yo Gotti; illustrated books and cookbooks; books for children and “books that defy genre altogether.”
The new imprint will be overseen by Chris Jackson, publisher and editor-in-chief of One World books, an imprint of Random House, and Jana Fleishman, EVP of Roc Nation.
“The goal of Roc Lit 101 is to provide a creative outlet for acclaimed wordsmiths and artists to share their visions with new audiences” says Fleishman. “There are so many untold stories and we consider it a true privilege to be able to amplify diverse voices while exploring the uncharted worlds that are about to open to us.”
Jackson adds, “Our aspiration for the imprint is to create books that draw from the best of pop culture—its most imaginative and talented storytellers, innovators, and literary chroniclers—to create beautifully written and produced works that will entertain and enthrall readers, but also illuminate critical issues. But the partnership isn’t just about the books – it’s also about audiences: we want to find new voices and new stories, but also new readers.”