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RWA Conference 2014 – Romance Rocks!
Do you have the X-Factor? Are you prepared to have your work presented on stage before a panel of judges on a stage, and blind the crowd with your talent?
By submitting your work to AUDITION SUBMISSION, you’ll be putting your story in front of six industry professionals all looking for the next author star, with the talent and perseverance to make it big on the world stage of publishing!
Hone your submission skills and take the challenge to find out if you have the X Factor in AUDITION SUBMISSION.
Panel of Judges
- Kate Byrne – editor for Hodder Headline UK
- Narelle Battersby – freelance editor for HarperImpulse
- Malle Vallik – editor for Harlequin International
- Lex Hirst – editor for Random Romance
- Lucienne Diver – Agent, The Knight Agency
- Alex Adsett – Agent, Alex Adsett Publishing Services
See judge biographies and preferences on the Editors/Agents Preferences page of the conference website.
The Audition Process
An independent reader will read anonymous manuscript pages aloud for the panel and conference delegates. During the reading, the panel will indicate where they would stop reading the submission, and later will explain why. The whole audience will benefit from understanding the submission’s strengths and weaknesses, and how they can further improve their own future submissions.
Offers of Interest
Any requests made during the AUDITION SUBMISSION are REAL. The conference team will get back to you with the contact details of the editor/agent who has requested your work. Any rejections from AUDITION SUBMISSION shouldn’t stop you from submitting in the future, but might help improve your submission through the panel’s feedback.
How to Audition
Send the first two pages of your manuscript to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday, July 25th.
- Put AUDITION SUBMISSION in the email subject line.
- Send your first two pages (double-spaced, 1-inch margins).
- Put your title in the head of each page – but NOT YOUR NAME.
- Save all documents as [Your Name AUDITION SUBMISSION Title] in .RTF format and attach to email.
- In the body of your email, please include your name, full contact details (including mobile phone number) and the title of your manuscript.
Express Year of the Novel
Make 2014 the year you finish your novel in Express Year of the Novel! Over six masterclasses, you will explore the elements of novel writing, including character and setting, theme, voice and narrative structure. With the support and feedback of your peers and acclaimed author, Anna Campbell, you’ll be equipped with the tools to complete the first draft of your manuscript by December.
Anna Campbell’s award-winning historical romances are published internationally, including in Australia and North America. For the last four years, the Australian Romance Readers Association have voted Anna favourite romance writer. Her latest release is A RAKES’ MIDNIGHT KISS (HarperCollins). Web: www.annacampbell.info
Romancing the Festival
Byron Bay Writers Festival will reveal the realities of writing romance with multi-published and award-winning authors Amy Andrews and Jennifer St George in discussion with, and at the mercy of, local celebrity comedian Mandy Nolan, says Festival Director, Edwina Johnson.
Chairing the session Be Still My Beating Heart: Writing Romance, Nolan will explore the world of romance writing and discuss what it’s like to be a contemporary romance author.
Amy Andrews is the author of over 40 romance novels with five different publishing houses, including Harlequin Mills & Boon, US e-publisher Entangled and HarperCollins, and has sold over 1.6 million copies of her stories worldwide. ‘There are many myths that surround the genre. Romance, like country music, is a genre which no one admits to listening to/reading but everyone has an opinion about,’ says Andrews. ‘This panel will be able to debunk these and explain the realities of the modern day romance novel.’
Andrews, whose recent novel HOLDING OUT FOR A HERO won Australian Romance Readers Association Best Contemporary Romance award, believes the key to longevity in publishing is diversification. ‘Authors have more choice than ever before. Digital publishing, self publishing, traditional publishing. And you know what? You’d be mad if you didn’t explore all your options.’
Local author Jennifer St George is thrilled to be teaming up with Nolan again. ‘Mandy launched my book SWEET SEDUCTION at Mary Ryan’s last year. I laughed so hard, I could barely answer her hilarious questions. She got people so excited, the book sold out that night.’
St George says many people are unaware of the enormous popularity of the genre. ‘Romance fiction generated over $1.3 billion in sales in the US alone in 2013. It was the top-performing category on the best-seller lists in 2012 across the NYT, USA Today, and PW lists.’
Nolan can’t wait to talk heroes, heroines, love and sex. ‘Romance is to love what pasta is to sauce. It’s a delicious combination, but in the end too much makes you fat.’ The author of Boyfriends We’ve All Had (and Shouldn’t Have), Nolan writes about ‘real ordinary’ love. ‘I tell the truth about love. That’s why it’s funny. Most of us never really tell the truth.’
‘People have told me that my book is really honest – that I have been very frank – almost disarmingly so,’ says Nolan. ‘I find that a bit shocking. People were quite comfortable with Fifty Shades of Grey – a book fantasising about bondage and being tied up by a bloke in a suit- it was sold in Coles and read by women as young as 14 and older than my grandmother. I don’t get it. I don’t even mention sex dungeons. I don’t have one. I have a two car garage. It led me to this most astounding conclusion, that writing about pornographised S&M was more easily accepted than writing about ordinary, flawed and often hopeless sexual encounters.’
Be Still My Beating Heart: Writing Romance will be held on Festival Sunday.
Where: The Festival runs at North Byron Beach Resort from 1- 3 August with workshops commencing on 28 July.
For more Festival information or to purchase tickets visit byronbaywritersfestival.com or call 1300 368 552.
For further information or interviews contact: Jennifer St George, m: 0418 134 543, e: email@example.com
Romancing the Page
Contrary to popular belief, a good romance is not as simple as falling in love. Writing good quality romance requires creativity, innovation, skill and well-formed characters embroiled in believable conflict.
Explore the diversity of the genre, get tips on convincing emotional connection and sex scenes, discover what readers and publishers want, develop a winning story synopsis and killer pitch, and learn about the earning opportunities the romance genre offers.
For beginners, early & emerging writers.
When: Saturdays 6, 13, 30 and 27 September, 10am–1pm
Where: Writers Victoria, 176 Little Lonsdale St, Melbourne
Tutor: Kate Belle (author The Yearning & Being Jade)
For more information and bookings: http://writersvictoria.org.au/what-s-on/event/romancing-the-page/
RWA is looking to offer our members a series of online writers’ workshops in the second half of 2014 through its new Online Workshop List (OWL). OWL events will be hosted, facilitated and promoted by RWA on a 75:25 profit-share arrangement with the presenter (the greater amount being the presenter’s). We would like to invite interested RWA members and non-RWA members to apply to conduct a workshop online through RWA in the inaugural OWL calendar. Please download the proposal form http://www.romanceaustralia.com/p/89/OWLs, complete by May 1 2014 and email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Classes are run from Margie Lawson’s website using on-line teaching software used by universities. Take a cyber tour before you start your class and introduce yourself.
Affordable forum-style writing classes
A double Golden Heart finalist in 2006, Julie Rowe has been writing for over ten years. Julie teaches a variety of workshops and is the moderator of the Announce Online Classes email loop, which promotes online classes for writers. To subscribe to the Announce online Classes email loop, send an email to: Announceonlinewritingclassesemail@example.com
Writers Festivals 2014
The Mildura Writers’ Festival brings together some of Australia’s best writers in an intimate, winter program of workshops, lectures and discussion forums.
When: July 17–20
Early Bird Tickets for Byron Bay Writers Festival are on sale. Workshops commencing on 28 July. The Early Bird tickets are only on sale until the full program is announced on 6 June, so now is the time to pick up a discounted Festival pass. For more Festival information or to purchase Early Bird tickets visit byronbaywritersfestival.com.au or call 1300 368 552.
When: August 1–3
Melbourne Writers Festival (MWF) is Melbourne’s annual, two-week celebration for writers, readers and thinkers. Each year in August, the Festival celebrates the talent and ideas of hundreds of writers from Australia and around the world, through a vibrant program of storytelling, conversation and discussion, intellectual debate, educational programs, live performance, music and art events. The Festival includes events for people of all ages and more than a quarter of the program is free. Their highly regarded Schools’ Program attracts more than 15,000 students.
When: August 21–31
Details to be provided as soon as they become available.
When: September 3–7