For PAN (Published Author Network), RWA is shutting out any publisher that uses their own website as the primary means of sale, any publisher that hasn’t had national distribution for a minimum of 3 years, and any publisher that doesn’t pay $1,000 advances.
There will be no erotic romance category for the Golden Heart or the Rita Awards.
This is, in effect, excluding all erotic romance e-publishers and most erotic romance authors from PAN and the awards. A huge statement that will affect many authors. (Current members of PAN, like me, are grandfathered and can remain members.)
Boy, are people mad! It’s a real slap in the face to many, many romance authors. The fall-out is going to be huge.
My own reaction? I’m shocked and disgusted that RWA passed this. The group is supposed to help its dues-paying members, not exclude and insult them. Why doesn’t RWA focus on things that will help? For instance, where is our group health insurance?
RWA is always moaning about how romance authors “get no respect” from the world at large. They don’t seem to realize that infighting, spatting, and wrong focusing like this could be one reason why.