Romance, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult, Book reviews, industry news, and commentary from a reader's point of view

RT Recap Day 3: Friday

I spent some time attending panels on Friday.   

The first “panel” I attended was actually a reader party hosted by Ann Aguirre, Lauren Dane, Megan Hart, Anya Bast, and Cynthia Eden. It was very popular. When you entered, you were handed a soft tote bag (one of those recyclable kind) full of swag. I think that each bag contained 5 or 6 books, several bookmarks, and a t-shirt. The party activity was answering 25 questions about the authors. In order to get the answers, you had to go and interact with the authors. I thought it was a very clever way of engaging the readers.

After the morning party (which did have food and drink for those who follow my twitter feed and now know that I am fairly obsessed with eating), I attended the Dorchester Spotlight.   For those who enjoyed the Shomi line and were wondering what happened to it, the line has been folded in Lovespell and Leisure.   Leah Hultenschmidt has more information on her blog.

Some highlights include:

  • Dorchester’s current releases are available in Sony & Kindle digital formats but the goal is to make them available in more formats and to digitize the backlist.
  • Dorchester encourages authors to send in unagented, unsolicited work. Marjorie Liu was found in the slush pile.
  • Dorchester publishes contemporaries with a humoristic bent.
  • From the time of acceptance to time of publication is usually 9 months to 1 year.
  • Bookstores are only placing orders 6-8 weeks in advance and not the 12 weeks in advance as they did before.

One title that fascinated me was  The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy  Parker set in the Victorian time period and steampunk-ish but without gadgets.   Anne Marsh is writing a very steamy series about shapeshifters releasing in the fall with the first title called  The Hunt.  

After the Dorchester panel, I attended the editor panel.   The message is that it is a good time to be a romance author but that they are still being selective about what authors they are picking up.   It sounded like the authors they are looking for must have a good hook and be marketable.   I’m not exactly sure what that means.   Most publishers acknowledged that their numbers were up.

I think that the best advice that came out of the conference came from agent Lucienne Diver who stated that you want to be the name that is used to describe the trend, not following it.

I attended the vampire ball which was hosted by Helen Rosburg and Heather Graham.   There was singing! and dancing! and dramatic acting!   and also food!   A good time was had by all.

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Nonny
    Apr 25, 2009 @ 14:59:13

    “Dorchester encourages authors to send in unagented, unsolicited work. Marjorie Liu was found in the slush pile.”

    Wow, that’s such a reverse from other publishers that have said they’ve yet to pick anyone up out of the slush pile. Hope! :)

  2. Sherry Thomas
    Apr 25, 2009 @ 16:08:23

    I think Dorchester has always read the slush.

  3. Leanna Renee Hieber
    Apr 25, 2009 @ 16:21:13

    Thank you SO much for mentioning The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker, Jane, I’m having a blast at RT and you’ve just made my day!!

  4. Terry Odell
    Apr 25, 2009 @ 17:07:57

    I don’t think it’s fair that Heather Graham can write AND sing. She blew everyone away with “House of the Rising Sun”. Amazing.

  5. Danielle
    Apr 25, 2009 @ 17:53:30

    Dang Dang Dang, I wish I was there!!!! Sounds like your having a great time.

  6. Eirin
    Apr 26, 2009 @ 08:56:03

    Anne Marsh is writing a very steamy series about shapeshifters releasing in the fall with the first title called The Hunt.

    Does anyone know more about this?

    I thought it sounded interesting, but Google is being spectacularly unhelpful. I can’t even find a whisper of this author (Anne Marsh).

    I agree that it’s unnecessary for an author to have a blog (re. last recap), but it’s all kinds of annoying when there’s no internet presence at all; no website, nothing I can bookmark or take note of.
    By the time the book comes out, chances are I’ll have forgotten all about it.
    You’d think the publisher (I assume it’s Dorchester) at least would have a note of upcoming releases.
    Now I feel all thwarted and grumpy.

  7. Leah Hultenschmidt
    Apr 26, 2009 @ 13:27:02

    @Eirin – More about THE HUNT is here. All the covers and descriptions are alpha by author, so just scroll down. In fact, you can find info on all romance through Oct. pubs, and Nov. will be on its way soon.

  8. Eirin
    Apr 26, 2009 @ 14:09:55

    Ooh, thanks Leah.
    My Google-fu must’ve been low on batteries. But…no mention on Amazon, Fantastic Fiction or FictionDB? No author website? Is it, perhaps, a stealth novel?

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