Happy 2018!

Happy new year, and welcome to NECRWA’s newly revamped website! We hope you find it easier to navigate and find what you need–if you have any trouble or want to provide feedback, please feel free to contact the webmistress. (Which is also me, NECRWA’s VP-Communications.) We will be continuing to add content and functionality to the site over the next few months, including:

  • a revamped members’ area with more information for new (and existing) members
  • an expanded and updated authors page
  • and other cool stuff we’re cooking up. 🙂

Today is exciting for another reason–registration for NECRWA’s fantastic Let Your Imagination Take Flight conference is now open! The conference will be held on April 27-28, 2018 at the Boston Marriott Burlington (MA), and the line-up of workshops and speakers this year is incredible. You don’t want to miss it! Early bird rates apply through February 1st, so register today!

January 21, 2018 Meeting – Setting Goals

The most compelling romances feature characters who have specific, concrete goals, things they want or need to achieve (or things they desperately want to avoid). The same can be said for smart romance authors: successful writers set goals, both for their writing and for the shape of their careers. So, what do you want to accomplish in 2018? Finish a manuscript? Join PRO or PAN? Write 100 words a week? Create a newsletter? Publish 5 books?

No matter what stage of your career you are at, thinking about your goals for both the coming months and for the distant future will bring much-needed focus to your writing, marketing, and publicity efforts. During January’s meeting, we’ll brainstorm about goals for our own writing and for our romance writing careers in 2018, and then set specific, concrete, measurable, and achievable steps we need to take to make those goals happen. For those who are interested, we will set up small accountability groups in which we can share our writing and career goals and encourage our fellow writers to follow through on their own.

November 19, 2017 Meeting – How To Be Edited with KJ Charles!

Editor and writer KJ Charles will join us via Skype to talk about the process of editing from both sides: what authors should expect from an editor, what an editor needs from an author, getting through hard edits without tears, how to tell if your editor is being too easy on you, and what to do when edits go bad. Suitable for traditionally published authors, self-pubbers working with freelancers, and people who simply want to be better beta readers/crit partners.

BIO:

KJ Charles spent over 20 years as an editor (development edits, line edits, and commissioning) in various British publishing houses, including Harlequin Mills & Boon, where she edited authors such as Penny Jordan. She recently changed sides to become a full time writer, and has published historical queer romances with Loveswept (Penguin Random House), Riptide and Samhain, as well as self publishing. She blogs on editing, self-editing, publishing and more at kjcharleswriter.com. Her claim to fame is a world-famous author refusing to speak to her ever again…twice.

2018 New England Reader’s Choice contest is open for submissions!

The 2018 New England Readers’ Choice contest is now open for submissions!

The New England Readers’ Choice contest for published authors recognizes excellence in published romance fiction. Our contest is one of the few judged exclusively by fans: librarians, booksellers, and devoted romance readers.

This year, the grand-prize winner of the New England Readers’ Choice contest will receive a Publicity Package or an Author Coaching package (winner’s choice) worth $250! The first, second, and third place winners in each category will receive a web badge, as well as a printed award certificate. Winners will be announced on the NECRWA website, in RWR, on NECRWA’s social media accounts, and at the Let Your Imagination Take Flight conference, to be held April 27-28, 2018.

Visit the NECRWA web site contest page at http://necrwa.org/blog1/contests/ for more information, including how to enter. Questions? Contact [email protected]

October 22, 2017 Meeting – Not Just For NaNo: Tips and Tricks for Writing Fast and Keeping on Track

Our speaker for October had to cancel, so we’ll be using our meeting time to prep for NaNoWriMo. Even if you’re not “officially” doing NaNo, there are useful lessons for all of us in the skills it takes to write 50k words in a month. After we go over some helpful hints, Stephanie Kay will tell us more about Word Wars, and we can use the last part of the meeting to split up into groups for critique sessions or brainstorming. Or, if you’re ready to roll, feel free to bring your laptop or a pen and paper and get a jump start on your project.

We hope to see you all on Sunday, October 22nd at 1pm in Bedford!

1. Not Just For NaNo: Tips and Tricks for Writing Fast and Keeping on Track. NaNoWriMo is fast approaching, and while it’s not for everyone, it can help develop skills that all writers find useful: writing quickly, focusing on a single project, and sticking to a deadline. We’ll discuss different methods that can help you win NaNoWriMo and also keep you on track all year long. Bring your favorite tips and tricks to share! (Tamsen Parker)

2. Word Wars (Stephanie Kay)

3. Brainstorming/Critique Sessions (small groups)

NECRWA18 Conference Is Accepting Workshop Submissions!

The NECRWA Conference, to be held April 27-28, 2018 in Burlington, MA, is accepting workshop proposals now through October 15th!

Do you have a great workshop or panel idea? We are looking for a wide variety of panels and instructional sessions focused on craft, business, and lifestyle topics that will appeal to authors in all sub-genres and with all levels of experience. Please fill out the submission form here: https://docs.google.com/…/1phcKY-ek4r8AeAwPkjVeQeJ…/viewform. If you have any questions, please reach out to Tamsen Parker, our workshop chair, at [email protected].

September 17, 2017 Meeting – Making Your Newsletter Work for You with Kristen Strassel

In this workshop, Kristen will discuss strategies to build a newsletter that helps authors sell books. A newsletter is the only social media that belongs to the author. She will talk about how to start a newsletter, including newsletter services and things authors need to get started—no book required. She’ll look at the best ways to build a newsletter list—including building an organic list, using reader magnets, and multi-author promotions. She’ll also discuss best practices on sending newsletters, working with other authors to maximize sales and profits, and how to increase backlist sales using your newsletter. These techniques can be used by indie and traditional authors.

BIO:

Kristen Strassel is far cooler than she’ll make herself sound in this bio. The prolific author of many paranormal and contemporary books, she enjoys spending time with the voices in her head—nudging the characters toward those bad decisions and seeing if she can get them a happily ever after. When she’s not writing, she’s often still in the land of make-believe—doing makeup for film and television. And when she’s not doing any of that, she enjoys making her house look like a Pinterest board, watching football, and road trips to the middle of nowhere. Kristen doesn’t have any kids, but she does have a very opinionated cockatiel.

August 20, 2017 Meeting – “You’re Such a Tease” with Marianne Rice

Ever see a book teaser with an amazing graphic and a quote that makes you smile, pulls at your heartstrings, or revs your…engine? In this workshop, you’ll learn the basic steps of graphic design. Marianne will share sites that have royalty free high-quality pictures and free programs to create your teasers for social media sites, website banners and blog posts. By the end of the session, those who choose to participate will leave with an epic teaser formatted and ready to post on all social media, blogs, and websites.

**You are encouraged to bring taglines or quotes from a WIP or published work so you can use them to create teasers during class.**

BIO:

Marianne Rice loves to write fun and spicy contemporary romances set in small New England towns. If she’s not writing, it’s because she’s stuck at high school attempting to teach her juniors and seniors to appreciate literature, and maybe even write a complete sentence or two. Marianne spends the rest of her time chauffeuring her herd of children to their varying sporting events, writing, shoe shopping, eating chocolate, and when there’s time, relaxing with a glass—or bottle—of wine and a romance book. You can find her all over social media and on her website at www.mariannerice.com

Marketing and Promotion Roundtable at Sunday 6/25 meeting!

By popular request, after Gabriela Pereira speaks to us about marketing for creatives, we’ll have a marketing and promotion roundtable.

We’ll talk about what’s working for you (newsletters, FB ads, BookBub, etc.)–or maybe not so much–and do some networking to try find possible cross-promotion buddies. We’re sure Gabriela will have given us some great fodder for our discussion!

Hope to see you on Sunday!

June 25, 2017 Meeting – Pixels to Platform: Marketing for Creative People with Gabriela Pereira

Savvy writers know that producing a great book is just the first step. To make an impact, you need to build an author platform so you can get your work in the hands of your readers. Yet oftentimes it can feel like you’re being pulled in a million directions. With new social networks popping up every day, it’s easy to get distracted by latest marketing gimmick—or worse, give up on building a platform altogether.

Don’t worry. Platform doesn’t have to be painful and you don’t have to sell out to sell books. In this session, you will learn concrete steps for building your online brand so you can forge meaningful connections with your readers. You’ll also discover a game-changing technique that will help you understand and research your audience, whether your platform is huge or nonexistent. Finally, you’ll learn strategies to help you focus your energy and resources on the things that matter most, so your platform will be sustainable for the long term.

BIO:

Gabriela Pereira is a writer, speaker, and self-proclaimed word nerd who wants to challenge the status quo of higher education. As the founder and instigator of DIYMFA.com, her mission is to empower writers to take an entrepreneurial approach to their education and professional growth. Gabriela earned her MFA in creative writing from The New School and teaches at national conferences, regional workshops, and online. She is also the host of DIY MFA Radio, a popular podcast where she interviews bestselling authors and offers short audio master classes. Her book DIY MFA: WRITE WITH FOCUS, READ WITH PURPOSE, BUILD YOUR COMMUNITY is out now from Writer’s Digest Books.