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Commissioning Editor, Commercial Fiction

Award-winning publisher Head of Zeus are looking for a new member to join their team, working on their dynamic commercial fiction imprints Aria and Aries. This busy, fast-paced role would suit a commercially minded reader with a proven track record in commissioning and publishing successful genre authors, predominantly for the digital marketplace, and predominantly in the romance, saga, crime and thriller genres. The ideal candidate will react quickly to trends; understand the application of digital publishing techniques; and be adept at identifying the opportunities offered by all-format publishing.

The role will be based in the Head of Zeus offices in Clerkenwell, London, but there is the opportunity to work from home up to three days a week.

Core responsibilities

You will have sole responsibility for publishing c.20 authors per year, including commissioning, structural editing, working with freelance editors, cover briefing, copywriting and liaising with authors and agents:

  • Publishing
    • Developing and seeing through the publishing strategies for a list of existing Aria/Aries authors
    • Project managing titles from acquisition through to publication, including production work
    • Carrying out market research and keeping up with genre trends
  • Acquiring
    • Acquiring new authors with a focus on the global English-language market for crime, thriller, saga and romance, in particular the US, UK and ANZ.
    • Managing the Aria open submissions portal, keeping it up to date and using it to discover new authors
  • Digital
    • Maximising the earning potential of Aria/Aries’ digital backlist
    • Having company-wide input into the online presentation and optimisation of our titles



  • At least one year’s commissioning experience
  • At least three years’ experience of working in commercial publishing


  • An in-depth knowledge of digital publishing
  • A genuine passion for popular fiction, particularly in the genres of psychological thriller, gangland, saga and romance
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills
  • Analytical thinking and the ability to express technical and creative vision clearly
  • Excellent organisational skills and experience of managing a varied workload
  • The ability to remain calm under pressure; able to work at pace and to tight deadlines
  • Happy to work independently as well as part of a team
  • Dynamic, enthusiastic and innovative
  • Excellent attention to detail
  • Advanced MS Word, Excel, Powerpoint


£27-35k, depending on experience

To apply

Please submit the following to Thorne Ryan ( by 11.59pm Wednesday 7th July in an email with the subject line ‘Application - Commissioning Editor HoZ’:

  • CV
  • Cover letter
  • 2 x cover copy samples (can be links to Amazon pages)
  • 1 x structural editorial letter

Commissioning Editor, Commercial Fiction

Head of Zeus, London
Full-time, Permanent
Administration, Commissioning Editor, Editor, Publishing, Communications, Business Development, Digital, Editorial
Commissioning Editor, Commercial Fiction
Salary description: 
£27,000-£35,000 depending on experience

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At least one year’s commissioning experience