A writer pal told me she wasn’t coming to Colorado Gold because RMFW members were too divided among traditional and independent writers. Too much friction. She didn’t feel welcome any longer.
Maybe I’m as clueless and naïve as a newborn, but I just don’t get it. I don’t feel it. I don’t sense it, either. But I’ve heard others say the same.
You get to choose traditional or independent. Who the absolute hell cares what anyone else decides in terms of a path to publication?
Repeat: who cares?
We all write.
We all market.
We all believe in the power of story.
How many writers out there have started independent and gone traditional? How many have started traditional and shifted to independent? How many do both? (Looking at you, Kerry Schafer.)
It’s very possible I was board president for RMFW when IPAL (the Independent Published Authors Liaison) formed. I’m 99 percent sure I supported the concept at the time.
But it’s time for this split to end.
I would say the Venn Diagram of “traditional” versus “indie” is about a 95 percent overlap. Working with agents and negotiating contracts with traditional publishers is about the only element that is exclusive to traditionally-published writers. Even then, you could make an argument that awareness of contracts and agents (etcetera) is useful for independent writers, too, because “independent” writers work with small publishers who may not offer traditional advances but do require contracts.
What I’m trying to say these aren’t separate camps!
And, by the way, if you have only ever been traditionally published, do you think you have some helpful suggestions for those working in “independent” land? And vice-versa?
So I emailed RMFW president Sue Loeffler about this issue. I told her I was prepared to throw a fit here on the RMFW blog.
And (drum roll, please), the RMFW board has already decided!
And they are doing the right thing.
PAL and iPAL will merge on Jan. 1, 2022.
The new Professional Author Alliance (PAA) will be headed up by the energetic Andre Gonzalez. (Way to go, Andre.)
It’s time for RMFW to come back together as one organization focused on the craft and business of writing and producing genre fiction.
I support this decision 1000 percent.
See you at Colorado Gold (if you’re coming) at Colorado Gold next week.