I’d been writing about a year, maybe just under, before I decided to join Romance Writers Australia.
Why did I join? I’d got over any ‘cringe’ factor about writing romance. I’d decided to be loud and proud and bugger what anyone else thinks when you say you’re writing… romance. And I realized just how much I had to learn about writing craft at that point, and thought RWA would benefit me.
I am so glad now, that I joined, and I wanted to take a post to shout out a big THANKS to RWA and its volunteers.
RWA rocks. Make no bones about it, I’ve worked at membership organizations before (yes, someone paid me) and the customer service I’ve seen in 12 months at RWA wins prizes, hands-down.
Every communication I’ve had with anyone at RWA, always by email, has been handled quickly, and handled well. Given these are people who have ‘real’ jobs and busy lives, the response time always beats my expectations. You know, I send something off and I don’t expect a reply within an hour, yet alone that same day. Take a contest entry for example, I’ll assume the lady receiving the entry is probably running an accounting firm somewhere, or making an elf costume for her five-year-old’s kindy Christmas show… or anything really, and organizing a writing contest is not her number one priority.
Even so, generally (for me) in the space of half an hour, I’ll receive a note to say: “yep, got your STALI entry – all fine.” Or sometimes “yep, got your Emerald entry – change your margins!”
So to the ladies who’ve helped me with contests so far: Kasey Rowe, Sandra Harris and Lis Hoorweg – thank you!
I joined the Critique Partners program, and Bec Sampson and Joanne Levy, hooked me up with two lovely partners, professionally and quick.
If I’ve ever had something for Cruisin the Blogs, Juanita Kees is a delight to send it to.
Hearts Talk is a great magazine, again considering volunteers put it together. I’ve been a journalist, freelance writer and editor for twenty years and I know how much goes into anything that comes out in print (or online for that matter). It doesn’t just get chucked together. Contributors have to be thought of, liaised with, chased, reminded, nagged into sending a photograph. Contributions have to be laid-out, headlines thought of. Things have to be made fit into an A4 page. Websites need be perused, press releases subbed for the relevant and interesting bits, conversations remembered, things written in bullet points or on bar mats worked into something that makes sense. It’s hard work and to everyone who puts Hearts Talk together – I love the start of the month when it arrives in my mailbox. In this digital world, I still like getting printed things, and I hope you’ll continue to make a hard-copy magazine available.
So to everyone I’ve had anything to do with at RWA to date, thank you – your blood is worth bottling. You all do a great job and keep up the good work. One day, when I feel I can offer you something, I look forward to volunteering too.
Are you a member? If you’re interested in what Romance Writers Australia could do for you, contact http://www.romanceaustralia.com/