Jay-Z
Jay-Z (Courtesy photo)

Entertainment mogul Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter has expanded his endeavors from music, sports and the cannabis industry to book publishing.

Roc Nation, a leading modern entertainment company founded by Carter has announced the launch of Roc Lit 101, a new publishing imprint with publishing giant Random House.

The imprint says it will be devoted to publishing books at the intersection of entertainment and genre-defying literature from some of the biggest artists and writers of the times on a wide range of subjects such as music, sports, pop culture, social and political activism and art.

Roc Lit 101 also aims to diversify the mostly white world of storytelling with concentrated efforts.

“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,” said Chris Jackson, publisher and editor of One World Books, who will oversee Roc Lit 101 said.

“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,” Jackson said.

The inaugural list for Roc Lit 101 will launch in Summer 2021 with baseball legend CC Sabathia’s “Till The End,” a memoir of baseball, family, fame, addiction and recovery; and music journalist Danyel Smith’s “Shine Bright,” a combination of memoir, criticism and biography that tells the story of Black women in music.

Future lists include fantastical illustrated fiction from rapper Lil Uzi Vert; personal narratives that take on criminal justice and life in the inner city by rapper Meek Mill; and coming-of-age memoirs from rappers like Fat Joe and Yo Gotti.

There are also plans to offer illustrated books and cookbooks; books for children and books that defy genre altogether, according to the company.

“The goal of Roc Lit 101 is to provide a creative outlet for acclaimed wordsmiths and artists to share their visions with new audiences,” said Jana Fleishman, executive vice president of Roc Nation. “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.”

Sarafina Wright –Washington Informer Staff Writer

Sarafina Wright is a staff writer at the Washington Informer where she covers business, community events, education, health and politics. She also serves as the editor-in-chief of the WI Bridge, the Informer’s...

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