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Monday, June 06, 2005

Graphical Standards Firestorm

There's been a firestorm of outrage, confusion, and discussion regarding RWA's implementation of their Graphical Standards Policy. I have, for the most part, tried to stay out of the discussion, but have been following it intently.

Most of the problem, as far as I can see, stems from the ambiguity of the language posted at RWA's website, and from the way the policy was voted in. But regardless of the reason behind it, the firestorm exists.

Members of the organization are waiting, some quite impatiently, for clarification of the policy language and how it will affect them. Here's what I've learned from posts on RWA lists: Some of the Board members have been away at a conference, and there is sincere hope the ambiguity will be cleared up when they return. There is also the possibility that it might not be cleared until the next Board meeting. However, the Board has indicated that the individual organization chapters will be receiving an e-mail regarding the new policy.

The President of RWA just posted to one of the RWA lists, and although I can't quote her specifically, I will say she indicated that most of what's been tossed around on blogs and listserves is rumor and pure speculation. RWA is not looking to kick any of their members out of the organization, they are simply trying to move forward as a romance writing organization.

That being said, there's a lesson to be learned here. If you're unhappy with the direction of RWA, get involved. Volunteer. Run for a Board position. Answer the periodic surveys RWA sends out. Read the RWR, and when asked for opinions, make certain to share yours. The Board members endeavor to act in the best interest of the organization as a whole, so let them know how you, as a paid member of RWA, feel.

But, along with most of the other RWA members, I'm anxiously awaiting clarification of the policy. How will it affect me and my future with RWA? Or the futures of my CPs? My other online writing friends? How much of what I've read is truth?

And that's all I'm going to say about that. For now.


  • This topic has been thoroughly discussed in every list I'm in. Erotic romance writers totally upset, and I've heard of many cancelling their memberships to RWA. Gosh, I feel like there's a "civil war" brewing in the romance writing world.

    By Blogger Silma, at 10:00 PM  

  • Hi Silma & Lynn,

    Gosh, I feel like I've found old friends. I can't access Romance Divas for some reason (since the server upgrade done by RD's host), and I feel so deprived. (BTW - this is Diva Stella here. ;) )

    I hope the RWA members don't get all weird about the situation and start screaming or quit RWA or whatever until they have all the facts first.

    By Anonymous Diva Stella, at 3:48 AM  

  • Great post and I've adopted the wait and see attitude. But I am paying very close attention to this one.

    By Blogger Sheri, at 5:54 AM  

  • Sheri--It definitely warrants a close eye, doesn't it?

    By Blogger Lynn, at 10:20 PM  

  • Stella! So nice to see you! Have you made it back to RD yet?

    From what I've been hearing, the majority of members seem to be waiting, however impatiently, for the clarification of the graphical standards. I think for the most part, people are reacting constructively rather than destructively.

    By Blogger Lynn, at 10:21 PM  

  • Silma--I think a lot of the erotic romance writers are feeling betrayed, and are angry at being treated like the redheaded stepchild. I do hope this issue is resolved soon, and in a manner that, even if it doesn't make everybody happy, will at least be satisfactory.

    By Blogger Lynn, at 10:26 PM  

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Location: Atlanta-ish, Georgia, United States

I'm a wife, a mom, an operating room nurse, a writer, a hobby photographer, and a music lover who knits and crochets. And I'm fairly certain I've lost my mind.

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