Shannon Stacey


RWA. Rinse. Repeat.

Redefining romance. Again. Fortunately, since my RWR comes a day or two later than others’, y’all know the backstory. (Bolded parts below were underlined in the survey—emphasis theirs—but I underlining escapes me at the moment.)

Option A—“Romantic Fiction” or “Romance” means a story in which a predominant part of the story line focuses on the romantic relationship that develops between one man and one woman on more than a physical level. Although other elements and subplots may be components of the story line, by the book’s conclusion the romantic relationship has been resolved in an emotionally satisfying manner.

Option B—“Romantic Fiction” or “Romance” means a story in which a predominant part of the story line focuses on the romantic relationship that develops between two people on more than a physical level. Although other elements and subplots may also be components of the story line, by the book’s conclusion the romantic relationship has been resolved in an emotionally satisfying manner.

Although it was my intention to limit the use of smilies to the comments pages, I must say…:eyebrow:

What’s wrong with current definition? A romance is a book wherein the love story is the main focus of the novel, and the end of the book is emotionally satisfying.

Personally, since the board is more than aware of the market, what’s hot, what’s selling and what members are writing, I see this is a big screw you to anybody who writes chick lit or romances featuring polyamory. Gay and lesbian romances are quite popular. A fair number of members write books that would fall outside those two very limited, exclusionary definitions.

And, yes, you know damn well the people who drafted those two options know that, and they don’t give a shit.

What caught my interest was a small snippet of Tara Taylor Quinn’s “From the President” column:

Since the inception of the genre, we have taken undeserved hits and snide remarks about what we do. The world has tried to devalue us, to take away our power, and the strength of what we do.

That is exactly what the board is doing to its members.

And, hello! Did you get teary-eyed reading Trish Jensen’s thank you letter to those who supported her medical fund? I did. And is our board fighting to get its members affordable health insurance?

Fuck no. They’re running around trying to ensure that no blue-hairs are accidentally exposed to a hint of a nipple on a cover, or letting the world know that you can’t live happily ever after unless you’re a heterosexual woman with a virginal down there area and a heterosexual, cockless man.

I must stop now before my head explodes. Blood pressure machines within a ten-mile radius are cowering in fear.

But before I hit publish, a couple of my favorite takes on the subject so far:

Lee Goldberg, of course (and make sure you read the comments)

Demented Michelle

PBW

8 comments to “RWA. Rinse. Repeat.”

  1. THIS! Christine
    Comment
    1
      · June 25th, 2005 at 2:36 pm · Link

    Oh Doll,
    Like you I don’t have July’s RWR yet so I haven’t read with my own two eyes what’s in there. But this is… words escape me. Although I do wonder why people keep mentioning this is a movement against gays, when clearly (at least to me) gays fall into option B. However, still doesn’t detract from my overwhelming feeling of unease about what is at the root of all this.

    Very disturbing

    X



  2. Anna Lucia
    Comment
    2
      · June 25th, 2005 at 3:18 pm · Link

    That’s what I thought, X, too. But I’m waaaaay out of the loop on all this. Doesn’t help that I’ll get the July RWR sometime towards the end of July, when everyone else is talking about the August one… :cursin:



  3. Gina
    Comment
    3
      · June 25th, 2005 at 3:48 pm · Link

    I know as a writer of gay romance these definitions would leave me out. Even if it isn’t the only thing I write, but since I do I know it would make the organinzation look down on me. I’m not an RWA member. I’d planned to join later this year, but now I’m not so sure. I think I’ll keep an eye on the developments in regards to the Erotic Romance Guild being formed.



  4. THIS! Christine
    Comment
    4
      · June 25th, 2005 at 6:48 pm · Link

    Mary Stella, sheds some light on the issue over at Kate Rothwell’s blog.

    X



  5. Jordan
    Comment
    5
      · June 26th, 2005 at 3:06 pm · Link

    :wtf: Honestly, that’s all I can say about the whole situation.



  6. Shannon
    Comment
    6
      · June 27th, 2005 at 8:42 am · Link

    I really wish they’d quit burying big “tell us what you think” issues in the middle of incredibly long and less than mezmerizing From the President columns. If it deals with censoring us or excluding some of us, you might wanna give it its own space. :rant:

    X, I think Option A is more homophobic, but Option B would maybe kinda be, too, as it would exclude polyamory, in which we could assume that one or two of the characters would probably be bisexual.

    And the reasons I’ve seen so far are ridiculous. :shrug:



  7. Trace
    Comment
    7
      · June 27th, 2005 at 12:16 pm · Link

    You’re so right. And that is a really awesome idea about the affordable health care.



  8. Marlys
    Comment
    8
      · June 28th, 2005 at 10:57 am · Link

    I’m a writer of gay romance, and just joined the RWA–the RWR with the survey was my very first issue. I was appalled. The current definition on the webpage does limit “romance” to stories about two people, but at least it doesn’t limit their gender. I would rather see a trend toward more inclusion (a romance is a book where the central plot is a love story–period!), but in the absence of that, I hate seeing a vote on narrowing it even further.

    Anyway, I emailed all twenty RWA board members, and am starting to get replies back. I’ve posted some excerpts on my website if you’re interested, and will update as I get more.



Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. the way there » RWA Linkys




  • Get my latest news straight to your inbox!

    I'll only be sending newsletters when I have news to share, and I'll never share your information. You'll receive an email asking you confirm your subscription (so please check your spam box if you don't receive that). You can unsubscribe at anytime.

    Search

  • Affiliation

    Shannon Stacey is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com.

    If you purchase a book listed on the site from Amazon.com, she’ll earn a small commission. Thank you!