Friday, October 21, 2022

Hallmark Publishing by Janice Lynn

When I was thinking on what I wanted to write on for my post, I had to consider what I've had so many reach out to me with questions, hugs, etc. Some of you may have heard that Hallmark Publishing will be closing in early 2023. As I write my most favorite books for them, I am a bit shattered. I love my sweet Christmas stories with a military quilt twist. Once all the legalities are settled, they will, hopefully, live on. All of this post is my viewpoint/opinion/interpretation and should be taken as such. As an author, I certainly don't have full access to the inner workings of the company and only know things as they directly pertain to me and my experiences. 

Hallmark Publishing was an idea pitched by Stacey Donovan, a Hallmark employee who at one time wrote greeting cards. Stacey believed Hallmark should have their on imprint to use to make their movies, rather than adapting from other publishing houses. Eventually she got approval and HP was born. Stacey's book Sunrise Cabin was HP's first release. Since that time, numerous books have been released, some novelizations of successful movies and some original stories. Even though only a very few HP books were made into movies, each book purchased had to go through a committee to make sure it was movie ready. HP started with just one employee--Stacey Donovan. Eventually, a part time employee was added. More recently a third employee was added. That's it. So, you can imagine the work load these women dealt with as HP grew. 

(Janice Lynn & Stacey Donovan July 2019)

I feel so blessed to have gotten to be a part of their publishing company. I pinch myself at all the good things I experienced in my involvement with HP. Wrapped Up in Christmas was their first story to hit the USA Today bestseller list, but others went on to. They amazingly got our books into Walmart as mass market releases. As with anything new, growing pains were felt, lessons learned as they traversed the publishing industry. Not long after my first release came out, the CEO who approved HP left the company. I'm not sure the new management ever really understood the potential of HP. Maybe they did and there were other complicating matters. Who knows?

After publicly discussing her job-related stresses via social media and having taken a mental health leave, Stacey Donovan resigned several weeks ago. Rather than replace her, Hallmark decided to close their publishing division. My heart breaks for Eunice and Katie who also worked there, for all the authors, and for our readers. We were building something very special. I don't believe Hallmark made the right decision by choosing to close HP, but if publishing isn't their interest, then I do understand that for them it was a business decision and their easiest option. Certainly, I am biased in wishing they'd decided otherwise.

Hallmark has made very little public or private comments. Many of the authors found out that the company was closing via social media. I was on a train on my first European vacation and my agent called to tell me. I've been writing long enough to know that as an author one has to be versatile and just roll with the punches. Publishing is a constantly changing industry. As with all things in life, one can look at the positives or the negatives. With HP, I had so many positives--the people and experiences. I don't know what the future holds or how all the legalities will complicate my viewpoint, but I do know all the magic I experienced in being a part of Hallmark's brief publishing stint. For that, I am forever grateful. 

Janice's Wrapped Up in Christmas books from Hallmark Publishing are still available, currently.

Buy Your Copy HERE

USA Today, Wall Street Journal, & Publishers Weekly Bestselling author JANICE LYNN lives in Tennessee with her Prince Charming and their princes and princesses, her vivid imagination, an adorable Maltese named Halo who's the true royalty of the house, and bunches of unnamed dust bunnies that moved in after Janice started her writing career. In addition to writing romance, Janice is a nurse practitioner, a quilter, an exercise queen, a military mama, and an avid supporter of the Quilts of Valor Foundation. Just kidding on the exercise queen.  The WRAPPED UP IN CHRISTMAS books are available at AMAZON Barnes & Noble WALMART & many other place where you buy books. 


  1. Lyn Cote here~Janice, this is tradtional publishing. I've been orphaned before. That's why I independently publish now. I wish you luck in your writing future!

  2. Beautiful post, Janice. Thanks so much for sharing with us, and best wishes on your continued success.

  3. I was so sorry to hear this news, Janice. Hallmark published some wonderful books, like yours!

  4. Janice, I'm so sorry to hear this. Best wishes on your future success. You are right. We have to roll with the punches.

  5. In the face of difficulty, you still write inspirational pieces. I’m sorry to hear that you were affected by the changes.

  6. Thank you for sharing your story, Janice. I know how hard Stacey and her team worked to make Hallmark Publishing and all the authors and your books a success. It's been hard to watch her stress level continually climb and it was a very sad day when she announced her (not surprising) decision to resign. I wish you and all the other fabulous Hallmark authors the best of luck. And I will really miss your Wrapped Up in Christmas books.