TeaStitchRead

TeaStitchRead

 Participating in:   

COYER Winter Edition (December 1st- March 7th) 

Bout of Books Cycle 27 (January 6th-12th)

 

 

Winter Weekend Read-a-thon
Courting Trouble - Deeanne Gist Breathless - Beverly Jenkins An Extraordinary Union - Alyssa Cole Copycat Killing - Sofie Kelly The Preacher's Promise - Piper Huguley

We are expecting a minor winter storm tonight that would last until tomorrow afternoon. So school may not be happening tomorrow; this adds to the holiday weekend and today my son stayed home from school sick. 

 

Basically I'm in need of a sanity saver/keeper. Usually I would be doing the 24 in 48 read-a-thon, but since the organizers cancelled this round, I don't have that. So I am making my own read-a-thon. There will be no cutesy name or hashtag; it will happen just here on BL (fingers crossed it stays up) and on IG if I remember to do so. Just me and a goal of reading for most of the weekend (Friday to Sunday) and making a dent in a stack of books. 

 

TBR for the Weekend:

1. Courting Trouble by Deeanne Gist

2. Breathless (Old West #2) by Beverly Jenkins

3. An Extraordinary Union (The Loyal League #1) by Alyssa Cole

4. Copycat Killing (Magical Cats #3) by Sofie Kelly

5. The Preacher's Promise (Home to Milford College #1) by Piper Huguley

 

If you need me, I will be in my blanket fort reading.

 

 

TBR Thursdays* - January 9th and 16th, 2020
Love's Violet Sunrise - Naomi Rawlings Love's Beginning - Naomi Rawlings This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America - Morgan Jerkins Poppies of Iraq - Brigitte Findakly, Lewis Trondheim The Astronaut Wives Club - Lily Koppel The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race - Jesmyn Ward Why We March: Signs of Protest and Hope--Voices from the Women's March - The Artisan Bakery School Anchor in the Storm (Waves of Freedom) - Sarah Sundin

*bookish meme created by Moonlight Reader

 

I forgot to post this last week and then BL went down for maintenance, so this is two week's worth of reading.

 

Well, I went into No Spend January doing well...until January 12th, when I decided to buy a 99 cent book. Other than that, it is going fine, but that is because none of the books "on sale" are interesting me. And no promos to entice me to spend money on books I do want so I can earn a credit to buy more books. 

 

My base library is doing an adult reading challenge for the winter called Passport to Reading. It runs from January 1st - February 29th. I picked up my passport this week and already filled in three of the ten categories and I am working on numbers four and five. Five categories finished enters you into a drawing for a $25 gift card to Starbucks; all ten categories finished enters you into a drawing for a $50 gift card to Barnes & Noble. I would be happy to win either one!

 

 

 

Print Additions

None

 

Nook Additions

+1. Bay City Belle (In Olde California #2 ) by Shirley Kennedy

 

Kindle Additions

None

 

Library Additions

Physical: 

+2. Poppies of Iraq by Brigette Findakly and Lewis Trondheim

 

Digital: None

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Print Reads

None

 

NOOK Reads

-1. Love's Violet Sunrise (Eagle Harbor #0.5) by Naomi Rawlings

-2. Love's Beginning (Eagle Harbor Short Story) by Naomi Rawlings

-3. This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminism in (White) America by Morgan Jerkins

 

Kindle Reads

None

 

Library Reads

Physical:

-4. Why We March 

-5. The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks of Race edited by Jesmyn Ward

-6. The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel

-7. The Poppies of Iraq by Brigette Findakley and Lewis Trondheim

 

Digital:

-8. Anchor in the Storm (Waves of Freedom #2) by Sarah Sundin (already counted in the TBR)

 

TBR from last week: 326

Additions 2

Reads 8

Total for this week TBR: 320

Bout of Books 27 Master Tracking Post - Tuesday and Wednesday's Progress
The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race - Jesmyn Ward The Astronaut Wives Club - Lily Koppel Courting Trouble - Deeanne Gist

Grab button for Bout of Books

 

Monday, January 6th

Currently Reading: The Fire This Time edited by Jesmyn Ward - read two more essays.

IG Challenge: Currently Reading photo https://www.instagram.com/p/B6-110_n3bQ/

Twitter: Participated in the chat

 

Tuesday, January 7th 

Currently Reading: The Fire This Time edited by Jesmyn Ward - read a few more essays

IG Challenge: Favorite Feel Good photo https://www.instagram.com/p/B7CvC42nM8x/

 

Wednesday, January 8th

Currently Reading: The Fire This Time edited by Jesmyn Ward - read a few more essays

IG Challenge: Winter Themed photo https://www.instagram.com/p/B7FK64JHzhs/

 

Thursday, January 9th

Read:

Currently Reading:

IG Challenge:

 

Friday, January 10th

Read:

Currently Reading:

IG Challenge:

 

Saturday, January 11th

Read:

Currently Reading:

IG Challenge:

 

Sunday, January 12th

Read:

Currently Reading:

IG Challenge:

URL
My first anticipated new release of 2020
Tonight We Bombed the U.S. Capitol: The Explosive Story of M19, America's First Female Terrorist Group - William Rosenau

Besides the hold list at the library, how many other government lists will I be put on?

Sunday Post - January 5, 2020
Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus - Dusti Bowling

*bookish meme started by Caffeinated Reviewer

 

This is my first Sunday post! I will put these on my blog when it is ready, in the mean time I will just keep them here.

 

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Home Fires: Friday was the official last day of Winter Break and tomorrow the kids go back to school - thank the deity of your choice. Today I took down the Christmas decorations and packed them away, so I got my reading nook back - YES! I celebrated the return of the reading nook by uh, finishing the book I was reading. 

 

Natural Order of Things: windy AF here today. Dry since the new year started. I am cutting out alcohol and soda as it seems my GI issues went nuts over the holidays and I was throwing back Prilosec and Immodium AD like candy. I am cutting down on caffeine to one (admittedly HUGE) cup of tea in the morning, then only caffeine-free drinks the rest of the day. So I am getting back to my natural state - that of a bitchy sloth.

 

Volunteer Hour: Last month I completed the 1st Aid/CPR/AED certification course and I am now good for two years. This is a personal goal of mine, as I had to have this certification in the military and then let it lapse when I retired; I made myself a promise to get back to it when I moved back to the states. I now needed it as a GS troop leader. The training came in handy because yesterday I burned a small part of my hand on spilled tea on my way to training for how to sell GS cookies via six hour power point presentation. Hey at least I knew how to treat my burn, which is slowly healing. We better sell a crap ton of cookies.

 

Shelf Talk: I posted my stats for 2019. In 2020 I have finished 5 books on my way to completing 200 books read goal. Bob Cycle 27 starts tomorrow.

 

Joshua and I finished the third book for the William Allen White Award challenge, so now he just has to go see the school librarian and take the 5 question test tomorrow. We read Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus (Aven Green #1) by Dusti Bowling; it is about a girl named Aven who has no arms (birth defect) who moves from Kansas to Arizona with her adopted parents to manage an amusement park that has seen better days. She befriends two school "outcasts" - Connor who has Tourette's and Zion who is overweight and shy. They get up to eighth grade hijinks and Aven discovers something about her family. Book two in the series was published in September and both kids want to read it over the summer. Highly Recommend. Previously, we read Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis and So.B.It. by Sophie Weeks. 

 

Must See TV: Over Christmas break I binged season 8 of Call the Midwife. Now I wait to watch CTM when it airs here in the spring...man, I miss the UK and BBC iplayer - I could be watching it right now! So now I need recommendations on what to watch...what's good BL?

 

Cinema Sunday: Haven't been to the movies since Frozen II - which I thought was better than the original but WTF was that Kristoff musical number?. Wonder Woman 1984 doesn't come out until June *sigh*. Some holiday releases/upcoming movies look good...to watch when it comes to Redbox or my library, some are a definite hard pass (see Mike's post on upcoming movies). Promising Young Woman trailer looks good so I am hoping the movie lives up the (small) hype. I think I am way too traumatized by seeing memes/stills from the Cats movie to even entertain the idea of seeing that movie. 

 

Sociable Introvert: Between RWA continuing dumpster fires (a new branch of WTF? is sprouting every day) and the US-IRAN conflict, my Twitter timeline is a mess. Not to mention that we in the states are now in countdown to the primaries/conventions/Election Day 2020 and everyone has lost their damn minds. On FB, just radio silence about what is going on in the world - oh, and the Patriots lost which makes everyone happy (me included). 

 

Headphones: all my subscribed podcasts took the holidays off, so today starts all new 2020 episodes. I took down and pack away the decorations while listening to season five of Trashy Divorces - this season is all about Frank Sinatra and his relationships, starting with episode 1 on his first wife. They also did a segment on Charles Dickens and his trashy love life. Look, I don't read gossip pages or blogs, but man do I love a trashy podcast.

 

That's all for this week. Hope you enjoyed a look into the life of Tea.

 

 

Bookish People are Awesome...

Especially if they are found here on BL.

 

Thank you for letting me vent some fear/loathing yesterday. I'm okay today regarding that. 

 

But I am also exhausted from attending a 6 hour in-person training done entirely in power point presentations...with 73 other people, not including the four instructors. This includes training done while we ate lunch. Felt like I was back in the USAF. 

TBR Thursdays* - January 2, 2020

*bookish meme created by Moonlight Reader

 

Edited to add 1/4/2020: Oops forgot to set this to post rather than save draft. Two days late but here it is.

 

Amazon had a buy $20 in ebooks, get $5 in credit promotion and I took full advantage of it (the $5 credit got me two books). And I got really stressed prior to the start of the holiday, so I went shuffling through the NOOK freebie section. So 2020 TBR is starting off higher than I wanted.

 

Print Additions

None 

 

Nook Additions

1. Love in the Rockies (McKinnie Mail Order Brides #2) by Ciara Knight

2. A Little Light Mischief (The Turner Series #3.5) by Cat Sebastian

3. Witchnapped in Westerham (Paranormal Investigation Bureau #1) by Dionne Lister

4. Then There Were Nun (Nun of Your Business Mysteries #1) by Dakota Cassidy

5. The Wedding is Doomed! by Various Authors

6. Changing Leaves by Edie Bryant

7. A Taste of Seduction by Mary Campisi

8. How to Be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendi

9. Mrs. Sartin's Secretary (Lords of Chance #2.5) by Wendy LaCapra

10. Daffodils (Katherine Wheel #1) by Alex Martin

11. Heiress Without a Cause by Sara Ramsey

12. Climate Justice: Hope, Resilience, and the Fight for a Sustainable Future by Mary Robinson

13. Fairchild's Lady by Roseanna M. White

14. A Hero's Promise by Roseanna M. White

15. Love and Forever (Small Town Romance #1) by Chloe Peterson

 

Kindle Additions

16. Proper English (England #0) by KJ Charles

17. Willow: Bride of Pennsylvania (American Mail-Order Bride #2) by Merry Farmer

18. The Lady's Guide to Celestial Mechanics (Feminine Pursuits #1) by Olivia Waite

19. Mrs. Martin's Incomparable Adventure (The Worth Saga #2.75) by Courtney Milan

20. Miracle on Ladies' Mile by Joanna Shupe

21. Beneath an Italian Sky (An American Heiress #2) by Stacy Henrie

22. Where Snowy Owl Sleeps (Brides of Blessing #9) by Mimi Milan

23. Birth of the Butterfly (Brides of Blessing #11) by Mimi Milan

24. A Taste of Whiskey Valley (Whiskey Valley #1) by Aleigh K. Dean

 

Library Additions

Physical:

25. Why We March: Signs of Protest and Hope/Voices from the Women's March

26. The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race edited by Jessmyn Ward

27. The Astronaut Wives Club by Lily Koppel

 

Digital:

None

******************************************************************************************************

Print Reads

None

 

NOOK Reads

None

 

Kindle Reads

None

 

Library Reads

Physical: None

Digital: None

 

2020 Start TBR: 326

Reads: 0

Total for this week TBR: 326

It's really hard to read and get into a good book when your loved one, the father of your kids whose birthdays are next month, may be gone off to the ME by Monday or next week or just as we are celebrating with birthday cake. Because our toddler in chief was upset about memes posted to Twitter and wanted to distract my fellow Americans from his impending impeachment. 

 

Fuck everything.

Reblogged
Would Any one like to help me out- I would love your help with creating a game

I would love for you to help me be creating List of Book Genres and Phrases or whatever book Related Phase you would do to choose your next read or your TBR Book.. I started it but I need to your help in filling it out.

 

Add what you do you pick your next read or TBR Book.. I want to create something that uses these your way of picking or choosing your TBR Book or Book to read next. Please add them to this document

 

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jituRKrde-u8jTRDK_PdqyA_P4Vus1jH4qR-HBLLhHs/edit?usp=sharing

 

Please I know some of you created Games before and have some of the Prompts or (options) that could be used. Please help me out, the sooner the better.

Reblogged from Nighttime Reading Center
Source: http://docs.google.com/document/d/1jituRKrde-u8jTRDK_PdqyA_P4Vus1jH4qR-HBLLhHs
My Year in Books 2019

Here's a link to my GR "Year in Books 2019" page: https://www.goodreads.com/user/year_in_books/2019/840708

 

2019 was the first year I kept a log of what I read and certain traits I wanted to track within my reading. 

 

Basics

Number of Books Read: 110

Number of Pages Read: 23,585

 

Breakdowns

Authors of Color: 28 (25.5% of reading) I hope to beat that by 10% this year. I know I can do better because there are a lot of AoC romances sitting on my eReaders.

 

Authors from LGBT+ Community: 7 (6.4% of my reading) That's horrible! I think I am going to score this category a little differently in 2020. I can't know for certain what the gender and/or sexual identifier of an author is when it comes to fiction, so I am counting main characters in the story if they identify as a member of the LGBT+ community. 

 

Male Authors: 39 (35.45% of reading) - Some of the books I read had more than one male author, so the number is a little off. Almost all my male authors wrote non-fiction; the only exception was Brian K. Vaughn from the Saga series. I feel fine about this number.

 

Female Authors: 85 (77.3% of reading) - some of these were anthologies were there were several female authors. I'm not worried as I read a lot of women's fiction and romance and cozy mystery - genres dominated by women authors.

 

Non-Fiction: 44 (40% of reading) - honestly I thought this number would be a lot higher. I had non-fiction binges a lot in the early part of the year.

 

Fiction: 66 (60% of reading) - just fine with that.

 

Library borrows: 52 (roughly 48% of reading) - got me thinking I might want to upgrade my Library Love Challenge level at least to the next level. All 5 audiobooks I listened to came from the library.

 

Owned: 58 (roughly 52%) - I really need to read down my own books.

 

Thanks for reading!

January 2020 Reading TBR
Courting Trouble - Deeanne Gist Anchor in the Storm (Waves of Freedom) - Sarah Sundin The Astronaut Wives Club - Lily Koppel Why We March: Signs of Protest and Hope--Voices from the Women's March - The Artisan Bakery School The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race - Jesmyn Ward This Will Be My Undoing: Living at the Intersection of Black, Female, and Feminist in (White) America - Morgan Jerkins An Extraordinary Union - Alyssa Cole Breathless - Beverly Jenkins The Darkness Knows (Viv and Charlie Mystery) - Cheryl Honigford Appetites & Vices - Felicia Grossman

I need to read a minimum of 17 books per month to reach my goal of 200 books. *Sigh* Okay then let's do this! Twenty books placed on the list to ensure I hit 17. I won't know if any book works for a prompt for the BR Read Harder challenge until I read it, so none are being assigned to that challenge in the beginning of the month.

 

1. Courting Trouble by Deeanne Gist

          - 2020 Reading Assignment Challenge (Professor Author Luv)

 

2. Anchor in the Storm (Waves of Freedom #2) by Sarah Sundin

         - 2020 Reading Assignment Challenge (Professor Genre)

         - Finish That Series Already 

 

3. The Astronauts Wives Club by Lily Koppel

         - IRL book club pick

         - 2020 Library Love Challenge

 

4. Why We March: Signs of Protest and Hope/Voices from the Women's March

          - 2020 Library Love Challenge

 

5. The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks About Race by Jesmyn Ward

          - 2020 Library Love Challenge

 

6. This Will Be My Undoing by Morgan Jerkins

         - From the 24 Festive Tasks game, this is what the dreidel chose for me to read as my first book of 2020

        - COYER

 

7. An Extraordinary Union (The Loyal League #1) by Alyssa Cole

         - Finish That Series

 

8. Breathless (Old West #2) by Beverly Jenkins

          - Finish That Series

 

9. The Darkness Knows (Vi and Charles Mystery #1) by Cheryl Honigford

         - COYER

 

10. Appetites and Vices (The Truitts #1) by Felicia Grossman

            - COYER

 

11. Her Perfect Partner (Matched to Perfection #1) by Priscilla Oliveras

          - COYER

 

12. Copycat Killing (Magical Cats Mystery #3) by Sofie Kelly

          - COYER

 

13. The Scandalous Suffragette by Elizabeth Redgold

           - COYER

 

14. Tycoon (The Knickerbocker Club #0.5) by Joanna Shupe

          - COYER

          - Finish That Series Already

 

15. Year One (The Chronicles of the One #1) by Nora Roberts

         - COYER

 

16. Smooth Talking Cowboy (Gold Valley #1) by Maisey Yates

          - COYER

 

17. Opposites Attract (Nerds of Paradise #1) by Merry Farmer

 

18. The Preacher's Promise (Home to Milford College #1) by Piper Huguley

          - COYER

 

19. That Healing Touch (Cutter's Creek #1) by Kit Morgan

        - COYER

 

20. Once Upon a Wedding: A Fiction from the Heart Second Chances Anthology by Various Authors

     - To dip in between books

URL
Psst....Hey Current RWA Members

This book is on sale at all major retailers for $2.99.

 

I'm Just Saying......

Bout of Books Cycle 27 Sign Up Post

Grab button for Bout of Books

 

In addition to other crazy reading challenges, I am adding Bout of Books Cycle 27. 

 

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, January 6th and runs through Sunday, January 12th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, Twitter chats, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 27 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

 

I have no clue what I will be reading by the time it kicks off, so no TBR. I decided to just do the IG challenges this time around; the blog challenges are the same ones every cycle. I will participate in Twitter chats, since they now happen in my time zone. Other than that, no specific goals.

24 Festive Tasks Master Post and Finally Point Tally

 

 

I know it seems a little early, but I am tallying up my points and am finished with the game. I have two books for one square left to read and those books are short so I will get it done by the 31st.

 

Thank you to Moonlight Snowfall, Murder by Death, and TA for allowing me to play host as well as player. I hope everyone had fun playing along and/or reading others' posts and I am anxious to see how many points total we earned.

 

Door 1 Points: 5

Door 2 Points: 5

Door 3 Points: 4 + 1 bonus for picking a winning pony

Door 4 Points: 4

Door 5 Points: 4

Door 6 Points: 3

Door 7 Points: 5

Door 8 Points: 4

Door 9 Points: 5

Door 10 Points: 4

Door 11 Points: 2

Door 12 Points: 3

Door 13 Points: 2

Door 14 Points: 3

Door 15 Points: 4

Door 16 Points: 2

Door 17 Points: 3

Door 18 Points: 3

Door 19 Points: 4

Door 20 Points: 4

Door 21 Points: 4

Door 22 Points: 5

Door 23 Points: 4

Door 24 Points: 2

 

Points Earned: 89

24 Festive Tasks, Door 23: Hogswatch

 

Hogswatch

 

Book: I read The Color of Magic in graphic novel form. I'm saving the second graphic novel in the book for next year!

 

Task #1: Goddess of Review Writing

I take bullet point type of notes while reading the book and right after finishing, she then takes those notes and writes the review and does the posts for me. Extra goddess points for all the 2.5-3 stars reviews, those are the hardest ones to write.

 

Task #2: 

“No, what he didn't like about heroes was that they were usually suicidally gloomy when sober and homicidally insane when drunk.”
Terry Pratchett, The Color of Magic

 

Task #3: Skip - I'm reading my first Discworld book this month.

 

Task #4: This is my first Pratchett and I tried to read a Gaiman book and did not like it at all. So I asked my husband who is a big fan of Good Omens (and has tried to get me to read it repeatedly...to no avail) - his answer: Aziraphale because "he had a lot of shit going on but he protected the kid so the kid can make his choice without outside influence." Seems fitting my husband would root for the devil-like character, LOL.

How to Destroy a Genre: The RWA Christmas Story - Edited to reflect more cars in the pile up

Edited 12/27/19: I took the night off and purposely did not go on Twitter to watch the continuance of this train wreck. Instead, I spent several hours with the nuns, nurses, and residents of Poplar (Call the Midwife is still my favorite show - and season 8 is a banger). This morning I had to refill son's ADHD prescription; holidays + end of the month meant that I knew I had a wait, so I brought my NOOK - my low battery NOOK. So I ended up reading new RWA posts from Twitter.

 

OOOOOHHHHH BOY, HERE WE GO:

 

Carolyn Jewel has resigned as President and Damon Suede is now President. There are three At-Large Directors left. There are more members leaving, more entrants to the Ritas/GHs wanting to leave the contest, and more smaller leadership members resigning (Brie Quinlain and Jeannie Lin resigned in a joint statement). 

 

The stories coming out now of discrimination against marginalized authors are from the local chapters (which are affliated and approved by RWA), showing the rot is not just at RWA HQ but in the local writing groups as well - again as affliated and approved by RWA. Then there are the stories of how Suede treated individuals and in one case, the RRW (the LGBT+ specific chapter that he was once a part of). 

 

The "new" board wrote a word salad of an open letter to the membership, going on and on about how trust was broken, trust must be rebuilt, we love diversity, blah, blah, blah. As often the case, actions speak louder than words. The new board has decided to appoint remaining members who volunteer to the vacant positions until the yearly elections (July or August 2020), rather than hold new elections....yeah good luck with that.

 

I'm going to be honest - I'm disappointed Kate McMurray (At-Large director and M/M author) hasn't resigned yet. I hope someone talks to her or she sees the writing on the wall and does so before we ring in the new year. I would hate to delete her books off my eReaders, but I will if she doesn't resign soon.

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So when I published my post A List of Cowards, I wanted a handy place to put the list of the Romance Writers of America (RWA) Board of Directors names so that I could go through and boycott/eliminate them from my TBR. But it turns out that we only got a small portion of the story Monday night/Tuesday morning. So for clarification and updates, here's the story of how a group of Nice White Ladies (NWLs) destroyed a genre:

 

In August of 2019, Lisa Ling used private communication methods to talk with Courtney Milan about her feelings about a book Ling was reading. Milan did not disclose the conversation, but she did make her feelings known about the book, Somewhere Lies the Moon by Kathryn Lynn Davis (originally published in 1999, re-issued as an ebook in May 2014). It was problematic for Ling and Milan (both of Chinese-American romance authors) due to racism and other issues. Milan did not call Davis a racist in her tweets; she had problems with the book and her tweets were about the book. 

 

This was at a time when the hashtag #RitasSoWhite was just starting to fade. The hashtag was for the conversation regarding the Ritas/Golden Hearts awards program regarding the slate of finalists, which were overwhelming white, cis, and straight. The Ritas were RWA's big professional award for published authors, the GHs are for unpublished works.This was not the first year the Ritas/GHs have been marked with dubious content; in 2015, Kate Breslin's For As Such a Time As This featured as the main couple a Nazi officer "hero" and a Jewish concentration camp "heroine" was named a finalist. That went over as well as you might expect.

 

There have been folks dedicated to fixing not only the awards programs but the PAN loop discussion forums and just overall the homophobia, transphobia, the ungodly amount of racism, and other -isms. For a genre that prides itself on being a place where everyone can have a HEA/HFN, the real work of making that a reality for the writers of marginalized communities was Sisphyus-level but there were some change being seen....or that is what the RWA wanted people to see.

 

In August 2019, Suzanne Tisdale and Kathryn Lynn Davis filed an ethics complaint against Milan. Milan stepped down from her leadership position (she was chair of the Ethics Committee). The current BoD decided to panel a second ethics committee to decided on the complaints since they felt the original committee members were too close to Milan to be impartial....more on that second panel in a minute.

 

On Monday, December 23rd, Alyssa Cole posted a Twitter thread announcing the Board's decision to censure Milan based on the report from the second ethics committee. Her punishment was to be ban for one year from the RWA and a lifetime ban from any leadership role. Although it was clear from the documents posted that the Board and possibly the second panel did not find the complaints filed by Tisdale and Davis credible AT ALL, but they voted 10-5 (1 abstained) in favor of banning Milan. The RWA then closed for the Christmas holiday. Yep, they dropped the MOAB then just went home to enjoy some nog while Twitter exploded.

 

By Tuesday, December 24th, someone on the Board decided to try and put out the flames by issuing a temporary suspension on the censure:

 

"At a meeting today that identified a gap between policy and process, RWA’s Board of Directors rescinded its vote accepting the findings of the Ethics Committee report and the consequent penalties against Courtney Milan pending a legal opinion.

RWA reiterates its support for diversity, inclusivity and equity and its commitment to provide an open environment for all members."

 

Man, "pending a legal opinion" is doing A LOT of work in this statement, as someone pointed out on Twitter. This is very IRONIC considering the genre is made up of a lot of lawyers and former lawyers, including Milan.

 

One other thing to point out with RWA's extremely terrible timing, the announcement of Milan's censure on Monday was also the last day for entry into the Rita/GH award program. Authors who want to enter for a chance to win had to submit their manuscript and pay the $50 fee and agree to judge. So when the Milan censure came down, there were a whole lot of authors emailing the RWA asking for their entry to be disqualified/returned to them along with a refund of the fee and oh hell no they were not going to be a judge. Other authors, who learned from previous years not to bother with the Ritas/GHs, were demanding their membership fees be refunded or were vowing not to renew when the time came to do so. 

 

I guess the Board saw the money leaving the organization and tried to staunch the bleeding with the temporary suspension of Milan's ban, but no dice. This on the heels of Cockygate, Feehan's attempt at trying trademark basic paranormal romance terms, the statutory rape book series featured on Frolic that turned into a doxing and harassing mess, the silence from RWA regarding the publisher Dreamspinner Press not paying authors royalties earned for at least a year now, years of #RitasSoWhite - it all came to a head and everyone had a story to tell.

 

Linda Hilton here on BL shared a small part of her horrible experience with RWA. Other authors from marginalized communities are sharing their stories, not just with Board members but a lot of stories involving RWA "staff" discriminating against members and future members. Olivia Waite filed ethics complaints against another author for discrimination and hate towards her for being LGBT+ but her complaints were seen by the ethics committee or the Board....the paperwork was discarded by a lower level RWA staffer. Piper Huguley was stopped from entering the dining hall where the 2013 awards was held because the "staff member" didn't recognize her as a finalist, even though staff were given pictures of all the finalists. And two Jewish authors told stories this morning of being rejected as members because their manuscripts didn't "meet" the requirements of a romance and was rejected within 24 hours of submitting. Neither author knew of the other's story until this morning.

 

While stories were being shared and membership were leaving in droves, a certain Executive Board member's husband decided to weigh in on a few stories where his husband was called out for his silence. Geoff Symon, husband of President-Elect Damon Suede (who will take over as president at the end of current president Carolyn Jewel's term), went after a few people who were calling out Suede for his silence not only on the Milan censure but also on the Dreamspinner fiasco. As someone pointed out on Twitter "Damon Suede is the Pete Buttgieg of the RWA" - it might be petty of me, but I laughed hard at that because it is SOOOO TRUEEEEE. (Buttgieg is a mayor running for President on the Democratic party ticket - for all you non-Americans wondering who the fuck he is.) Suede is also the biggest, if not one of the biggest, names on the Dreamspinner roster of authors.

 

On Thursday, December 26th, members of the Board's At-Large directorship all resigned in mass, so my list of cowards shrunk a ton (good thing, as many of them are in my TBR). This is a big deal, considering the names of those resigned were all AoC and their statement is pretty damning. Then Rachel Grant, now former member of the original ethics committee, resigned as well and then dropped the whole "hey it wasn't our committee, it was this other ethics committee that some of us were not even aware of".....so now we might have a shadowy ethics committee and RWA staff running around trying to MAKE RWA GREAT AGAIN (a point brought up by Army officer and romance author Jessica Scott). 

 

In the time it has taken to write this post, most of the Board has resigned and the membership roles (and the money it rakes in) has dropped. There have been no comment from the Board other than the temporary halt to Milan's ban while awaiting their legal eagle to give them cover. Authors are looking at creating a whole new organization with the expressed mission to be inclusive and diverse; others are looking at joining other writer groups including SFWA, MWA, and NINC. Some authors are returning past Rita awards to the RWA HQ in Houston (Deanna Raybourn for one), while Milan is donating her Rita to the Brown's museum for romance. 

 

This is how you destroy a genre at Christmas.

currently reading

Progress: 15%
Copycat Killing - Sofie Kelly
Breathless - Beverly Jenkins
An Extraordinary Union - Alyssa Cole
The Preacher's Promise - Piper Huguley