Public Statement from LRWA
January 9, 2020
We, the Lowcountry Romance Writers of America Chapter (LRWA), stand with our sister chapters in their condemnation of the Romance Writers of America (RWA) national board and staff’s handling of the ethics complaints and advocacy on behalf of author members. We find their management, or lack thereof, of these subsequent crises to be particularly egregious. More specifically, we condemn:
- The lack of transparency and accountability within the organization.
- The apparent gross misconduct by former president Damon Suede and by executive level staff as led by Carol Ritter.
- The failure to follow through on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) promises resulting in continued harm befalling persons from marginalized communities.
- The suspicious disregard of stated policy and procedures.
- The disinclination to effectively respond to their membership’s outrage.
- The lack of information to assist chapter leadership.
- The apparent mishandling and unfair treatment of ethics complaints regarding marginalized members, and specifically Ms. Courtney Milan, which was the case that brought much problematic information out in the open.
- The recent hesitancy or out-right refusal to labor for member advocacy, particularly the latest Dreamspinner Press controversy and the apparent conflict of interest therein.
- The apparent mishandling of ethics complaints filed by people from marginalized communities.
While the resignations of Damon Suede and Carol Ritter are steps in the right direction, more still needs to be done. LRWA petitions the national board to fulfill the remaining calls to action from our fellow chapters, and specifically, the demands of the 19 past national directors and presidents as outlined in their letter to the RWA board dated January 2, 2020.
LRWA is committed to DEI efforts and will remain a safe space for marginalized voices to be uplifted and heard. We sincerely hope the national RWA board and staff share those same values and will work to make expedient and genuine reparations and take appropriate actions to address our concerns and rebuild trust.
Lowcountry Romance Writers of America, including the undersigned:
Amy Quinton, President
Savannah J Frierson, Vice President
Jen Davis, Secretary
Linda Schad, Treasurer
Robin Hillyer-Miles, Member in good standing
Paula Gail Benson, Member in good standing
Elaine Reed, Member in good standing
Angela Lawson Mizell, Member in good standing
Ann Chaney, Member in good standing
Pamela Ann Phillips, Member in good standing
Renay Marsh, Member in good standing
Rebecca A Owens, Member in good standing
Sofia Sawyer, Member in good standing
- We had a full house at last month’s meeting! Yes!!
- Savannah presented important information about writing short stories – which was timely and came in handy because of #3:
- We announced a call for chapter members to participate in our first chapter anthology!
- Our Goals Donation rolled over another month – next month it could be you…
- In March, we crowned member, Ann Chaney, our March Writing Queen!Ann’s novel, Dangerous Pursuit, was announced as a Golden Heart Finalist for the 2019 Golden Heart contest. Congratulations Ann!
In addition – Besides, many years of service to LRWA, recently, Ann has served and been a valuable, active member of the online chapter, The Beau Monde.
Thank you for all you do, Ann! We are so fortunate to have you as part of our chapter family.
- In April, we crowned member, Renay Marsh, our April Writing Queen.Renay, writing as Violet Tempest, regularly and actively encourages herself and other writers through her posts and online writing sprints. We admire her ability to do so and to continue to write her own amazing stories even while actively managing her family’s business! That’s hard!
Congratulations, Renay – and thank you for being a part of our writing family! We hope to see you at another meeting soon.
1. We lovingly crowned Deanna McNeil, writing as Michele Sims, our January Writing Queen! Deanna released her debut novel in November 2018, a contemporary multicultural romance titled Act I Seed on Fire, released the sequel, Act II Playing with Fire, in January 2019, and made PAN! Well done, Deanna!
2. Savannah Frierson presented a kick-a$$ workshop that was part information part therapy session on setting effective goals and how to dig into why we all excel at sabotaging them. 😉 All members have access to workshop handouts, links, and slides.
3. Amy Quinton (Madame President) issued a Challenge Goal to the entire membership: Write 2000 words on your WIP by the February Meeting (Feb 16). She’s going easy on everyone…this time! Bwahahahaha
4. Speaking of Goals: We established the 2019 LRWA Book of Goals…and we cannot wait to see it where it takes us all in 2019! —->
5. Members interested in additonal meetups, writing sprints, or critiques… Further information and session information will be headed to our member’s inboxes soon!
6. Sound like fun? Interested in Joining our Chapter? Come join us for a meeting and try us on for size!
Happy 2019 Everyone
We hope you achieve all your writing goals for 2019! Come join us for encouragement, tips, and laughter as we discuss the craft of writing…no matter where you are on your publishing journey… 🙂
Happy 2018 Everyone
We hope you achieve all your writing goals for 2018! Come join us for encouragement, tips, and laughter as we discuss the craft of writing…no matter where you are on your publishing journey… 🙂
Happy Fall Y’all
From the Lowcountry Romance Writers of America
Happy 4th of July
We would like to wish all our Authors and Readers a Happy 4th of July!
Phew! The temperature is climbing here in the South and with the warmer weather comes…conference season! Many of you are in nearby Atlanta, enjoying the fun and excitement of the RT convention. We hope you’re having a grand time.
Last month, we had a blast at Huntington Beach State Park, where we met and talked Romance with a gentle sea breeze in our hair and the peaceful sounds of the ocean nearby. I hope we do more of these road trip meetings in the future!
Our next meeting is May 20th – moved ahead to avoid scheduling conflicts over the upcoming Memorial Day weekend. Our May speaker is a very special person in our hearts, the fabulous: Savannah Frierson. Savannah will be speaking to us about Diversity in romance. A topic which is incredibly important to everyone in Romancelandia. I urge you all to attend. And if you’ve ever wanted to come check out an LRWA meeting in person, this month is a great time to do so. You can go here for more information about our May meeting: http://lowcountryrwa.com/meetings/#MAY
We hope to see you in May!
Come Join Us At the Beach!
Spring is here, and it is the perfect time to put a pen in your hand, and your feet in the sand. Come join on April 22, 2017 for a day of writing fun at Huntington State Park. Admission is $5 per person, payable at the gate. Additional info about the facilities can be found at: http://southcarolinaparks.com/huntingtonbeach/introduction.aspx
For more information and to order a box lunch for this event, Click Here
Our Next Meeting…
Our next meeting is this Saturday, March 25, 2017.
10:30 Board meeting (all members invited, committee reports can be sent to me)
11:00 Quick announcements followed by High Fives and Oh Mys
Opportunity to buy tickets and goals
Lunch and networking
Our Guest Speaker is Stephanie Phillips of SBR Media. Stephanie will join us to speak about SBR Media, and share her insights in self-publishing.