The Harlequin Horizons Debacle

disaster You know how people can remember where they first heard about a terrible disaster? The Harlequin Horizons debacle is like that for me. While most romance readers heard about it on a blog or a romance message board, I heard about it first on a writing site, AbsoluteWrite.com. Reading about scams that prey on writers is like a hobby for me. When I saw a warning for something called Harlequin Horizons, my first thought was “Some small publisher is going to get in trouble for using the Harlequin name.”

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RWA: Sandy’s Take

photoJust a few thoughts to add to Lynn’s.

It was a pleasure to meet her, as well as AAR Senior Reviewer Jane Granville.  We also met AAR readers, including SusanDC and Sandlynn, both of whom we all know so well from our message boards.  It’s always fun to put a face to an online personality and this year was no exception.

During the conference Lynn and I met with several people very prominent in romance publishing – who are, of course, also big decision-makers – and I think there was a very positive take-away on both sides.

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Observations From My First RWA

RWA Hotel My first trip to the RWA conference felt like complete sensory overload, but in a good way. We kept the live coverage going over at AAR last week, but today I’m finally having a chance to catch my breath, and think about it all. When I got there, I finally got to meet and spend time with Sandy Coleman, whom I’ve worked with here at AAR since 2003, but had never actually met in person. After the literacy signing, I also got to meet Senior Reviewer Jane Granville and some of our message board regulars, which was very fun. Putting names to faces was nice, but I especially enjoyed the chance to spend time with some warm, friendly people who enjoy talking romance novels as much as I do.

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RWA Conference Coverage: What’s Your Pleasure?

ist2_2692424-retro-press-reporterRWA Nationals are coming up July 15  – 18 and this year both Lynn Spencer and I will be attending.

In previous years, AAR has offered extensive coverage – usually after the conference is over.  But the world – and the Web – are more immediate places today and our inclination is to adopt a coverage model that’s worked well all over the Internets.

What does that mean?  The biggest and most comprehensive change is coverage of conference sessions.  In the past AAR has included long reports on sessions and our inclination is – with a few exceptions – to ditch it.  Our thinking is two-fold:  first, RWA is an organization for writers and AAR is a site for readers and, second, there are many places on the Web that can be counted on for extensive coverage of the writer-ly side of things.

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RWA Announces the DC Literacy Signing Author Listing

The line up is up and it looks fantastic! The 2009 booksigning – open to everyone – will take place on July 15th at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in DC from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.

Are you going?  If so, who are you most interested in meeting?  RWA controversies aside, is there anybody not on the list that you’d love to see there?

-Sandy AAR

2009 Rita Nominations

The calls are going out today to 2009 Rita and Golden Heart finalists. Official results are going up at the RWA site and Twitter is also hopping.  Just search for hashtag #rwanoms for a live feed.  (And, no, you don’t have to be a Twit to follow results.)

Developing story…

We can report first here that Sherry Thomas was nominated for Best First Book, as well as Historical Romance.