Romance Writers of America (RWA) was established in 1981 “to advance the professional interests of career-focused romance writers through networking and advocacy.” I’ve been a member since 2000, when I attended my first National convention, and I still remember that heady feeling when I found myself in a room filled with over a thousand other persons who loved to do what I loved: read and write romance. It was a spectacular homecoming for me, a deep sense of being exactly where I belonged.
That feeling began to take a beating as the two halves of Adriana identified more specifically what we love to write: not only steamy erotic romance, but erotic love stories about women who are bisexual. I kept my RWA membership and joined the special interest chapter for erotic romance, Passionate Ink, but began to lose interest in attending conferences because I wasn’t sure where I fit.
Meanwhile a dedicated group of writers producing romance across the entire spectrum of LGBT was taking on the battle directly. At Romantic Times and RWA Cons they brought their books for display, participated in signings, and sometimes bore the brunt of prejudice and discrimination, even to the point of having their books removed and their displays taken down.
Those courageous writers persisted and RWA has just recognized a new special interest chapter: Rainbow Romance Writers , an on-line chapter with the following goals:
- to promote excellence in gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender romances
- to help members become published in LGBT romances
- to be an advocate within the industry for our genre
- to be a resource to our members and others on writing and the publishing industry
It may be a virtual room, and at this point there aren’t thousands of us, but both halves of Adriana are thrilled once again to be in a room where we so profoundly belong.